Grade 5

Properly Citing Sources

Digital Citizen
student looking at computer screen with notepad and pen next to it.


Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due​

Students write an essay expressing their opinion, wherein they choose an influential person and explain why this person should be included within a list of the most influential people of all time. Students are asked to include information obtained from at least three credible sources. In order to ensure that students are respecting the rights of others, they will use an online tool for generating citations to cite sources within a bibliography.

Students will:

  • Be able to properly cite sources using an online citation generator.

Vocabulary Words:

  1. Citation: A citation is a quotation from or reference to a source of information.

  2. Sources: Sources are documents, videos, or any place from which information came.

  3. Bibliography: A bibliography is a list of sources used to provide information, within a given piece of writing.

  4. Plagiarism: Plagiarism is taking someone else's work or ideas and passing them off as one's own ideas. (not giving the creator formal credit when using his/her work)

To prepare for this lesson:

See the Accommodations Page and Charts on the 21things4students website in the Teacher Resources. 

Directions for this activity:

  1. Students will be assigned a report or presentation 
  2. Students will do research to find content for their project. 
  3. Students will keep track of all online resources used to obtain information for their project. 
  4. Students will use an online citation tool to create individual citations.
  5. Students will compile all citations within a bibliography.

Possible Extensions: Students may explore various styles of citations.

Different options for assessing the students:

  • Observations
  • Check for understanding
  • Teachers will assess the bibliography to ensure that all sources used are included and that the format of all citations remains consistent.

MITECS: Michigan adopted the "ISTE Standards for Students" called MITECS (Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students) in 2018.

Digital Citizen
2c. Students demonstrate an understanding of and respect for the rights and obligations of using and sharing intellectual property.

Device: PC, Chromebook, Mac, iPad 

Browser: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Edge, ALL

App, Extension, or Add-on:
Cite this For Me

Cite This For Me
Citation Machine
Zoterobib video tutorial


CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.5.8 Recall relevant information from experiences or gather relevant information from print and digital sources; summarize or paraphrase information in notes and finished work, and provide a list of sources.

As students find and use images, information, and/or videos encourage them to always cite their sources.

Students when doing research on mathematicians and/or formulas cite all sources. 

As students conduct research, encourage them to create a bibliography of any and all resources used.

As students conduct research, encourage them to create a bibliography of any and all resources used.

This task card was created by Jean Smith, Van Buren Public Schools, January 2018. Updated October 2023.