Thursday, 7 May 2015

Planning for inquiry learning

With my new school year rapidly approaching, I have been thinking about ways to incorporate more inquiry-based learning into my classroom. I found a useful blog post by Kath Murdoch at JustWonderingBlog.com with some great ideas around how to prepare learners for a more inquiry-oriented approach to their learning. 





One of the key points I feel is the idea of reframing learning intentions as questions. The Right Question Institute offers a range of free resources that provide teachers with ways to encourage learners to formulate their own questions and foster an inquiry approach to learning. 

An area where I am limited is in creating a physical space that enables learners to move around and find working configurations that suit them. The best that can be achieved is the rearrangement of desks or the creation of a slightly more informal seating arrangement. There are plenty of desktop PCs available, however, and most students have their own mobile devices, so this affords a little more flexibility in setting up the physical space. 

Enabling learners to understand their own learning strengths is something I have been focusing on for a while now, and this is again something that is highlighted as an important aspect of inquiry learning. I plan to continue to developing ways to enhance learners' metacognitive awareness, whcih will form part of the inquiry journey. 

Although my learners have frequent, regular summative exams as dictated by the curriculum, my hope is that by using a more inquiry-based approach, learners will achieve more than simply good grades in their exams.