K - 4 Citation Expectations

Note:  These are minimal expectations for all students.  The goal is to have all MMMUSD students using complete MLA format by the end of sixth grade. We expect website URLs to be listed for "tracking back" even though URLs are no longer required by MLA.  If teachers in grades 3 and 4 wish to teach complete citations, they should use the MLA format including URLs.  When online tools are used for creating citations, EasyBib is currently the recommended tool.  

Note: Yellow highlights indicate the change/increase in expectations from the preceding grade level.

Kindergarten & Grade 1

Essential Question:  What type of material did you use, what is the title, who created it/who does it "belong" to?

Expectation:  Awareness of ownership - "belongs to" creator

  • Books: Author Name and Title of Book (formatting flexible, title may be underlined when hand written or italicized when word processed)
    • Example: Frost. Monarch and Milkweed  <or>   Frost, Helen.  Monarch and Milkweed
  • Internet: Name of website 
    • Example:  National Geographic Website
    • Example:  Nasa.gov 
  • Images: Discussion about original source.  Where did the original image come from? Remember: Google and other search engines are not usually the source, though this may be difficult for children at this grade level to understand.  
  • Person/Interview:  The full name of the person
  • Teachers model proper use of resources 
    • When using a picture in the classroom, talk about where it came from; when using a picture on your website use proper citation.
    • Discuss that  publications are created by someone and the work belongs to that person
    • When reading books, talk about the author, title (and illustrator)
    • For teachers Teachers are expected to know the difference between search engine results and actual website sources. For example, a picture returned in a Google is a will have a long URL with "google" in the URL.  Teachers should show students how to find the website where the picture is located, though this may be difficult for children at this grade level to understand. 

Example of linking to an open source image with all rights granted for reproduction. 
Students may copy and paste the link like this: .

http://openclipart.org/detail/4502/cat-reading-by-johnny_automatic

Grade 2

Essential Question:  What type of material did you use, what is the title, who created it/who does it belong to and how current is it?
Expectation:   Name of source, name of creator, publication date.  Formatting flexible; title may be italicized or underlined.

  • Books:  Last name, First name.  Title.  Publication Date.
    • Example:  Waters, Kate.  Sarah Morton's Day. 2008.
  • Encyclopedia (print or online):  Title of Encyclopedia. Publication Date.
    • Example:  World Book Encyclopedia.  2009.
  • Website:  Name of Website or the URL
  • Images:  Name of Website or the URL.  Stress that Google and other search engines, are usually not the source of an image/picture, the URL will not have "Google" nor the name of a search engine in it and will not be extra long.
  • Person/Interview: The full name of the person and date of interview
  • Teachers model proper use of resources 
    • When using a picture in the classroom, talk about where it came from; when using a picture on your website use proper citation.
    • Reinforce/discuss that  publications are created by someone and the work belongs to that person
    • When reading books, talk about the author, title (and illustrator), and the date of publication especially when using reference materials.
    • For Teachers: Teachers are expected to know the difference between search engine results and actual website sources. For example, a picture returned in a Google is a will have a long URL with "google" in the URL.  Teachers should show students how to find the website where the picture is located, though this may be difficult for children at this grade level to understand. 
Example of a citation from Pics4Learning
The entire citation is given below the picture so students can copy and paste it.
Boldt, Katie. bookbuddies4.jpg. . Pics4Learning. 30 May 2012 <http://pics.tech4learning.com>

Grade 3 and Grade 4

Grade 3 will be practice.  Assessment will be done in grade 4 as part of the Report Assessment in the Writing curriculum.

Essential Question:  What type of material did you use, who created it/who does it belong to, where in the material did your information come from (can someone track back and find it?) and how current is it?

Expectation:  Name of source, name of creator, publication date, location of information in source (e.g., page number). Formatting flexible; title may be italicized or underlined.

  • Books: Last name, First name.  Title.  Publication Date: Pages.
    • Example:  Raabe, Emily. Ethan Allen: the Green Mountain Boys and Vermont's Path to Statehood.  2002. 12 - 30. 
  • Encyclopedia (print or online):  Title of Article.  Title of Encyclopedia. Publication Date.
    • Example:  Lemmings.  World Book Encyclopedia Online.  2011.
  • Website:  Title of Website.  Date of Publication if given.  Date of Visit.  URL (copy and paste)
  • ImagesName of Website or URL.  Reminder that Google and other search engines are usually not the source of the picture.
  • Person/Interview: Name of the person, Information about their expertise if applicable, date of interview, format flexible.
    • Example:   Johnson, Katherine, DVM. Personal Interview.  1 June 2012. 
Teachers model proper use of resources 
    • When using a picture in the classroom, talk about where it came from; when using a picture on your website use proper citation.
    • Reinforce/discuss that  publications are created by someone and the work belongs to that person
    • When reading books, talk about the author, title (and illustrator), and the date of publication especially when using reference materials.
    • Teachers are expected to know, and teach, the difference between information resulting from search engines and where the information appears on an actual website. For example, Google is a search engine, and, in most cases, not the source, though this may be difficult for children at this grade level to understand. 

 Recommended sources for images:

  • Pics4Learning All images are available for educational use and include the citation to copy and paste. (especially good for grades K - 4)
    • Pixabay - All images here are free, and because this is a non-attribution site, students do not need to include a citation.
      • Flickr CC - Add the Flickr CC Attribution Helper to your bookmark bar to make the use of this tool easy for you and your students.
        • World Book Online All images are available for schools that subscribe and include the citation to copy and paste. Use the CESU school account to search World Book Online.  (Especially good for grades K - 4)
          • Public Domain Images This does have ads at the top! Read the fine print for publication permissions.
            • Search by Creative Commons  Pick the search engine you want to use.  Read the fine print for publication permissions since some images may have restricted permissions.
              • Wikimedia Commons Easy to use and shows the reproduction rights with a light bulb icon.
                • Open Clip Art Library
                  • When possible, take your own!