Inquiry-Based Learning: From Teacher-Guided to Student-Driven


>>Student: I opened it up,
and there was a root inside.>>Anne: What’s exciting about
the inquiry models that we go far and above what the curriculum
expectations are. Kids are invested in their learning,
and they’re able to transfer and apply what they’re learning
in school to the real world.>>Lindsay: Inquiry based learning
allows the students to be the thinkers. Teachers begin their lesson with an
idea of where they want to end in mind, but really give the students the
opportunity to drive it to that point.>>Lindsay: So your job, keep
working through your procedure, when you all agree, I’ll come
back and check in with you.>>Dawn: We have guided inquiry, where teachers are guiding
students through the curriculum.>>D.J.: Okay, find that
five milliliters.>>Dawn: And then making a shift
into student driven inquiry, where students use that
as prior knowledge and build their own inquiries
around that. We want them to be building the
foundation for higher level inquiry, starting right when we
have them in kindergarten.>>Lindsay: And once someone
finds something, make sure that you tell the
rest of the paleontologists.>>Student: We found the skull!>>Lindsay: [gasps] Oh,
you found the skull?>>Student: Yes.>>Anne: The teacher’s developing
the guided inquiry model based on the curriculum, but then
the students are shaping where do they want to go with it.>>Lindsay: We’re going to go through our
lab sheet quickly, and then we’re going to get into our experimental groups.>>Lindsay: They were told that two
scientists had a mix-up in their lab. They had some seeds, they had some eggs,
and now they don’t know which are which. The students had the opportunity to decide what they thought
would be helpful experiments for us to get to our answer. Instead of opening with a bunch of
information and facts and details, the students are given a
problem, and then they’re the ones who get to drive the experiments.>>Katie: I’m trying to see which
one is eggs, and which one’s seeds. But we don’t know. So we’re trying to figure out
strategies that we can do.>>Logan: We make our steps and
then we test and see what happens.>>Hadley: And we think planting them, and we think the seeds
will grow, and eggs won’t.>>Student: I think they’ll get bigger.>>Student: Yeah, so once they get
bigger, it would like crack open.>>Dawn: Teachers are
guiding with questions and to really get students thinking,
and learning how to question themselves.>>Lindsay: How might that help us figure out which are the eggs
and which are the seeds? Floating or sinking?>>Student: It might be that the
eggs are heavier than the seeds.>>Student: I like doing it
this way, because you get to touch what you’re actually doing,
instead of just looking at it.>>Dawn: Well, we started with
the inquiry model in science, and as we started to see students
getting excited about finding answers to deeper level questions,
we saw the power and how that could be implemented
throughout the school day.>>D.J.: If you grab a tube of
paint, there’s no real connection to the science behind making that paint. I want them to see that
art is everywhere. Science is everywhere,
math is everywhere.>>D.J.: Hey, we are making paint
out of household items today.>>Student: We started in the art room,
following every step of the recipe.>>Anne: Kids need background knowledge, and some conceptual understanding
of things.>>D.J.: How much salt do we need?>>Student: A quarter cup.>>D.J.: A quarter cup. So how many tablespoons is that?>>Students: Eight– four!>>D.J.: Four!>>Anne: The next step is, “What
do I want to wonder about now? How do I want to adjust this?” >>D.J.: You have to form your
questions so that you’re not taking over their creative process, but
helping that creative process. “How can you make this paint
fit your needs as an artist?” “As a scientist, how am going to change
or modify this paint so that it works?”>>D.J.: So I want you to test that. And remember to document what you did.>>Student: Okay!>>Kendall: We wanted
to change the texture, because ours was a bit
too lumpy for our liking and we added a lot of ingredients.>>Dawn: For the inquiry
to be successful, the question has to be appropriate. And so we really had to teach
students what questions would work, how to model them.>>Paval: My question that I had is how
could I get this to be a thinner paint so I can have like one straight line,
so it doesn’t splatter everywhere.>>Anne: The exciting piece
of learning this way is that we don’t always know
what the outcome will be. It’s a lot of risk involved in
allowing your students to kind of just do some discovery
learning on their own.>>Paval: I learned that if you’re
making paint, you use a liquid substance to make it thinner, but
if you mix too many of the wrong things,
it might just blow up.>>Katie: I think this is pretty good!>>Anne: We want kids to be critical
thinkers, to be problem solvers. Kids are getting to dig deep into
the cause and effect relationships that occur in every field
when we open that up, it just empowers them to love learning.>>Kendall: We really don’t have a limit. We get to learn how to do
this stuff with our own ideas. It took a lot of time, but we did it.>Students: Yay!

4 Comments

  1. Edutopia has become my medium in carrying out learning activities with students, many new knowledge and learning strategies that I can. Continue to work edutopia, thank you

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