When inquiry is front and center, teachers and students discover that each discipline, or area of study, has its own way of investigating, bringing forward evidence, communicating and generating knowledge.
From teachers who build towards inquiry in the classroom, to those same professionals who seek improvement by adopting these principles in their own practice, two recently published studies add to the body of knowledge that is inquiry-based learning.
Discipline-based inquiry results in highly engaged students and teachers who say they are more reflective when it comes to task design and their practice, generally. But the Focus on Inquiry study also revealed misunderstandings about inquiry in the classroom. Teachers and Galileo Educational Network mentors identified the following factors that would help to cultivate a… Read More
Here’s what happens when Grade 1/2 students become interested in bats, and how that fits in with the science curriculum – which included building things, seasonal changes and changes in local animal populations. A discussion about hibernating animals led to questions about bats. Students learned the local population was being threatened during the cold winter… Read More
We’ve been talking about strong tasks – the 'hard fun' when students confront those big issues and questions that even experts in the field of study are encountering. You have a great task when students go well beyond merely thinking about a concept – rather students are involved in work that connects them to the… Read More
Highly-engaged students and teachers who say they’ve become more thoughtful about task design and more reflective about their practice in general - this is what Galileo Educational Network researchers found during the Focus on Inquiry study. The study had researchers, mentors and teachers in 36 Alberta schools working on inquiry-based learning strategies and strong, effective… Read More
Planning for student learning is essential for effective teaching. For many educators, designing classroom tasks that are not only interesting, but also intellectually challenging and authentic to disciplinary ways of knowing is a challenge. Galileo Educational Network research team and mentors worked side by side with classroom teachers during the Focus on Inquiry research project. By… Read More
During the Focus on Inquiry study, participants were engaged in design-based professional learning, creating the change and studying the impact of the change as it was being enacted. Design-based research can serve as a way to enact and study change within our education system. It’s also the methodology used during the Focus on Inquiry study… Read More
Discipline-based inquiry has been shown to positively impact student achievement and provide intellectually engaging learning environments. Timperley (2008) states To engage in professional inquiry that makes a difference for students, teachers need to learn how to identify the pedagogical content knowledge and skills they need to assist their students to achieve the valued outcomes. The… Read More
We’ve defined inquiry and discussed how intellectual engagement is an important component of learning. The Focus on Inquiry study found that when teachers and school leaders build a culture of inquiry, it deepens student engagement in learning. But what does that mean for teachers who every day, must accommodate students, their learning needs, and at… Read More