Teaching Strategies: Stimulate Through Effective Questioning If you’re looking to improve the effectiveness of your teaching strategies, it’s best to start by improving your questions. Questioning students is the foundation of teaching, and when done effectively, it can transform a traditional teacher-led classroom into one where the students lead. Oftentimes teachers ask questions in an attempt to “fish” for the right answer. When doing this, teachers are missing out on giving all students the opportunity to participate in the class discussion. To help shyer students develop skills of inquiry that will extend learning beyond the classroom, consider the following teaching strategies. With a little forethought and a bit of tweaking to your lessons, a STEM-based... To kick off this holiday week, we want to spread a little Thanksgiving joy with... Google Play for Educators is designed specifically to help teachers find the... Here are some ways teachers around the nation continually promote connectedness... Teaching Strategies for Asking Questions
Teacher talk in inquiry classrooms « Justwondering I’m sitting in a café at an airport in New Zealand – scanning through emails while I wait for my flight. My attention is drawn to a young woman’s voice at the window behind me, “ Wow – isn’t it amazing to watch this! Having contemplated the same question many times, I turned around to see who my fellow ‘wonderer’ was. Child: “I can see another moving thing!! (Teacher) Oh yes! Child: “It’s for the bags. Teacher: “Tell us more…” Child “ They have to put the bags inside for the people” Oh – I see… I wonder which part carries the bags? Another child: “It’s joining up!” Child “Not for the bags. (The teacher stays silent for a while…the kids take their cue and watch…) Teacher: ”Wow – you have some interesting ideas guys. Child: “It IS for the bags” TEACHER It might be, yes, won’t it be interesting to see what happens…you’ve got me thinking about how they get people and bags on. About ten minutes later the group reappears in front of me. You have noticed so many moving things here. (Teacher) Sure!
Creating Classrooms We Need: 8 Ways Into Inquiry Learning If kids can access information from sources other than school, and if school is no longer the only place where information lives, what, then happens to the role of this institution? “Our whole reason for showing up for school has changed, but infrastructure has stayed behind,” said Diana Laufenberg, who taught history at the progressive public school Science Leadership Academy for many years. Laufenberg provided some insight into how she guided students to find their own learning paths at school, and enumerated some of these ideas at SXSWEdu last week. 1. Laufenberg recalled a group of tenacious students who continued to ask permission to focus their video project on the subject of drugs, despite her repeated objections. 2. Laufenberg’s answer: Get them curious enough in the subject to do research on their own. “Rather than saying, ‘We’re going to study immigration,’ I took them through a process where they become interested in it themselves,” she said. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Related
Inquiring into the ‘how’…. « Justwondering One of the key principles of inquiry based learning is that HOW the learner learns is as important as WHAT they are learning about. Inquiry teachers talk a lot about process and the importance of learning to learn. It’s part of our discourse…but lately I have been wondering how much we REALLY value it. I spend a lot of time contributing to teacher inquiry (including my own) by giving ‘fishbowl’ lessons. Every ‘demonstration’ lesson I conduct includes an explicit focus on learning processes. I recently enjoyed working with a year 4 class who had been involved in an inquiry that demanded a great deal of collaboration. As teachers reflected on the session afterwards, it was clear that some of us found it difficult to justify ‘so much time’ focused on such specific process oriented work. The skills and dispositions needed for effective inquiry are indisputable. Many of us did not grow up in classrooms that focused on learning processes. What does it mean to think creatively? Like this:
The Question Formulation Technique in Action We’ve been at work for more than 20 years teaching a strategy that helps people in low-income communities learn to advocate for themselves and their families. We have seen people use the strategy to advocate for their children at school, participate in decisions that affect them at the welfare office, secure better job training opportunities, and partner more effectively with their healthcare providers. We’ve also seen that the same strategy has universal value and has been used by college and graduate school students, professors, and professionals in various fields. What is the “Right Question Strategy?” We are seeing an explosion of implementation around the country in teaching the skill of question formulation. Learning “just” these two skills creates not only a pathway to success on many levels but also a pathway to full participation in democracy. Luz Santana / Dan RothsteinCo-Directors, The Right Question Institute
Learning Spaces #1 - Build a project nest A learning wall that reflects the emerging nature of your project is something that will help you develop new ideas. The Why Productivity and creativity guru Scott Belsky calls it a Done Wall, Google Ventures' Jake Knapp calls it The War Room of a project. In short, for longer, deeper thinking projects we need a physical space that is a continual reminder of the work that is going on, what has been completed. The space for your project will help keep ideas bubbling away and will create a point of interest to talk about and refer to. Having one physical space is a vital component in getting all the information from a project's immersion phase into one space, meaning digital resources need to be made physical, too. The Experiment Building a project nest is a developmental process, not something that has boundaries. For the schools we work with they can dedicate a wall space that becomes a working wall. This can work with even your youngest learners. Your Next Steps
Curious Homework: An Inquiry Project for Students and Parents Photo credit: iStockphoto International educator Scot Hoffman is a big believer in the power of curiosity to drive learning. After nearly two decades of teaching around the globe, he also realizes that school isn't always so hospitable to inquiring minds. (As Einstein said, "It's a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.") That's why Hoffman has developed The Curiosity Project, a self-directed learning experience that engages students, parents, and teachers as collaborators in inquiry. I first met Hoffman a couple years ago during a visit to the American School of Bombay in Mumbai, India. Here are highlights of our recent conversations about The Curiosity Project. What was the inspiration for this idea? Scot Hoffman: In about my third year of teaching -- this was back in the 1990s -- there were a couple students I just wasn't reaching. Another inspiration was a set of questions that a former professor, Dr. What is curiosity? What did you notice? How has the project evolved?
Busting some myths about ‘the inquiry cycle’…. « Justwondering I once read an interview with a hero of my early teaching days – Donald Graves. He was asked about the way people had misinterpreted his ‘process writing’ model and replied that sometimes he wished he’d never written it down! Years later I understand the frustration behind that sentiment. It’s hard to do justice to the complexities and nuances of inquiry in writing. So much gets lost. Something that is rich, layered and multidimensional can come across as flat, linear and recipe-like. So why even ‘have’ such a cycle? Articulating a model or framework for the process of inquiry is a helpful way to support and guide our practice. Here are some of the more common misconceptions about ‘the cycle’ and my response to them. Misconception 1: Inquiry is all about ‘the cycle’. Simply using an inquiry cycle does not make us inquiry teachers. Misconception 2: The cycle is a recipe. Nope. #Misconception 3: All inquiries go through the same phases over a similar time frame. …Just wondering…. Like this:
How To Understand Anything Using The Inquiry Process Hypothetical situation: you’re a student and your teacher has tasked you with identifying a topic that is important to you, understanding it, interpreting it, and then delivering a report to your classmates. Aside from the nerve-wracking part of talking at the front of the classroom (eep!) there are a lot of things to consider. For example, how do I find my particular topic? That’s where the inquiry process comes in to save the day. Quick aside: like the graphic on the right? The Inquiry Process Check out the fabulous visual below that maps out everything in a flowchart. Step 1: Pose real questions! Step 2: Find useful resources: Ask yourself questions like ‘Where do I find quality resources?’ Step 3: Interpret all that information you just acquired in step 3. Step 4: Now the hard(er) part. Good luck!
Reflections in the Why | Thoughts on Transformations in Math Education Small Acts That Change the World | KindSpring.org Dear Friends, The overwhelming response to September's 21-Day Kindness Challenge surpassed our wildest dreams! 6000 people, from 98 countries participated and lit up the world with thousands of kind acts and stories. This surge of energy, enthusiasm and connection left us wondering -- what do we do next?!? It didn't take long to arrive at the perfect answer. Inspired by YOU, we've decided to step it up and launch the 21-Day Gratitude Challenge. While the Kindness Challenge placed attention on all the ways we can give, the Gratitude Challenge will be geared to make us tune in to all the ways in which we constantly receive. As with the last challenge, you'll receive a daily email with inspiration and ideas. Together we will find and celebrate the good in each moment. Change Yourself. In the spirit of service, The KindSpring Crew At age 108, Holocaust survivor Alice Herz Sommer still practices piano for 3 hours every day.
Genius Hour Part I This week it unfolded. Passion…geniuses…or a combination of both? We kicked off our IBPYP Exhibition these last few weeks in grade 5 at Yokohama International School. Frontloading: To begin, students watched videos we found on Inspire My Kids. But until this week, we had mostly been discussing, getting a grounding in passion. Hands-on Time: I first read about it here on Inquire Within and considered starting it during Exhibition. Students brainstormed interests. After brainstorming, they thought about what they needed and went at it. The Next Day: The first thing the next morning, students came in and started talking. Wait. The Energy: When they got back into their passion hour, they didn’t want to stop for anything. Some reflections so far: Absolutely self-motivated. Next week, the students will show their process so far, what they learned, and I’ll have them do a compass points visible thinking routine about what they learned and where they head to next. Like this: Like Loading...
36 Core Teacher Apps For Inquiry Learning With iPads 36 Core Teacher Apps For Inquiry Learning With iPads The interest in inquiry-based learning seems to ebb and flow based on–well, it’s not clear why it ever ebbs. In short, it is a student-centered, Constructivist approach to learning that requires critical thinking, and benefits from technology, collaboration, resourcefulness, and other modern learning skills that never seem to fall out of favor themselves. Regardless, St Oliver Plunkett Primary School has put together two very useful images that can help you populate your iPad–or classroom of iPads–with apps that support both inquiry-based learning (the second image below), and a more general approach to pedagogy based on Apple’s uber-popular tablet (the top image). The original pdf for the first file can be downloaded here. 36 Core Teacher Apps For Inquiry Learning With iPads; image attribution St.