As the school is set to begin for me in three weeks, I keep finding myself toying with what I am going to do different this year. I think sometimes teachers get so used to teaching what they have always taught the same way because it is safe for them. They know it’s going to work. I on the other hand, have a different philosophy. At the end of each learning cycle, I have my students evaluate the cycle as well as myself. This serves two purposes. One, it get students into the practice of reflection, which we all know is a valuable skill our students need to have, and secondly, I continue to practice to self-reflect. The area that was lacking in most of my learning cycles from both my students point of view and my point of view is inquiry. While I speak and use inquiry in my lessons on a daily basis, I feel that my students and I can do a better job when it comes to this area. I need to find more engaging images, videos, and sources to hook my students at the beginning of an inquiry cycle, and my students need to know how to ask better questions.
Last year at ISTE in San Antonio, I met a group from The Inquiry Process. It is a website based out of Canada that has great resources on how to implement the Inquiry Process into your classroom. Also, part of better inquiry, are better questions. For teachers its important to ask questions that students can’t simply Google to find the answers. The group at notosh have a great resource about this too.
So my challenge is to make inquiry the number one priority in my classroom this year. What is your top priority?
George Phillip is a social studies teacher and designer.
Ramsey Musallam - www.cyclesoflearning.com
Karl Lindgren-Streicher -
Josh Stumpenhorst -
Jason Bretzmann -
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