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While evaluating different search engines today, my freshman students 
chose their own search term to help them determine the effectiveness of 
different search engines. I like to have them use searches such as 
"blue suede shoes", "ruby slippers", "deer mouse" and the like to learn 
to narrow their searches and also to see how different search engines 
handle the request. One group today used "Air Force One" which of 
course is a plane, but is also a) a Nike shoe style and b) a song. Very 
creative on the kids' part! We also used "sacred land", a topic the 
freshmen are researching, which can refer to Native American sites but 
also is the title of a computer game. It's nice to have some new (and 
relevant to the students) topics to search. I love this stuff!

Cathy Rettberg, MLIS
Head Librarian, Menlo School
Atherton, CA

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