Before they went on to their task, I introduced them to World Book Online. The school district is kind enough to pay for a subscription. After students finished their first task, they went on to work in groups of four answering questions about a specific topic using the online encyclopedia.
Each student was given a web graphic organizer and asked to choose a topic, find the encyclopedia that matched and write 6 facts about their topic of choice. Some classes chose subjects right away and got to webbing, while others had to be encouraged and nudged to finally choose a topic. In one class, the encyclopedia index was used several times!
I'm excited about the progress students made because they will get to use their new found skill for their upcoming Black History Month project.