For an assignemt like a biography, a history, or anything that takes place over time, a timeline program such as Timeliner from Tom Snyder Productions may help in the thinking process. This program allows the student to enter items onto a timeline, then organize them on the screen, cross-reference them, annotate them, and print them out. Timelines can be short as a day or go from the past to the future.
Most research projects are essential to the social studies curriculum. The electronic library is highly useful when it comes to research. Far beyond providing students with facts, the computer can help them think about what they find, ask questions, and discover new relationships.
Having immediate access to multireference or encyclopedia titles makes reading history more meaningful. In seconds you can look up words and even events you don't understand (or forgot). You can call up a map or a photograph of the place you are studying (The Apache Tribe for the Native American Unit), to help you visualize what really happened. Your reports can be peppered with little known facts and cross-references to happenings in other locations.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/kidspost/orbit/kidspost.html (search engine that helps students with current research)
Software provided by MCPS
Maps N Facts
Native Americans: People of the: Desert, Forest, Northwest Coast
Nystrom Online Map Library