Thursday, June 4, 2009

Inquiry – notes from sessions prior to starting and Week 1 of Inquiry – Whole Class Session

Inquiry - first session (2 weeks prior to starting)

Be careful with the use of the term ‘project’ within inquiries.

Whatever you decide to come up with. It is something that you can apply to your own learning and to schools.

So what? – there is going to be a positive consequence one way or another – our chance to make a difference for you as a learner and others as a consequence of what you are doing.

Why is inquiry different to research?

Inquiry is doing something with the information you have gathered. How do you apply it? It is a recursive model – there are stages that you might move through and you often come back to the earlier stages (it’s not linear).

Refer to A3 handout – See ‘Lift Off to Learning’ – Michael Pohl (there are CDs as part of the resource). 3 hour and 3 day loan in the library. Especially good in terms of the questioning stage.

Immersion stage – explore some of the deviations along the way. At other times you might meet road blocks along the way.

Sign into Gazette and sign into online job alerts. Lots of jobs now want teachers to have inquiry experience.

A desk is a form of control and is education from ‘the waist up’. There are all sorts of things to achieve in the classroom if you allow children to begin this process (and high levels of independence that they can take in terms of their learning).

EDIS 723 Student Net Site

160 hours of learning.

Pass/Fail course (but written feedback give n which is valuable for applying for positions)

Fill in sheet to hand in the last immersion session to Sue’s office T305

Check out Mancala game

Banks Ave model of inquiry is being developed at the moment.

Refer to A4 handout

Need to have a journal (A4) – A4/A3 is the best size for sticking in things. Bring one to the next immersion lesson.

Choice Words – the power of the teacher and their language in the classroom


Integrating interactive multimedia into literacy programmes using classroom blogs. Things to consider: pedagogical reasons for justifying technology, internet safety, code-switching/text language – how do students move between these different literacies. Think about digital literacy/multiple literacies.

Inquiry Session Week prior to starting - visiting speakers

Have a timeline

Inquiry is big in the schools – think about how you would do it in the classroom!

Think about info and sources – don’t overwhelm yourself

Do lots of journaling and reflecting – use your diary – as is reflecting on the journey at the end. Can also use this in job interviews.

Relate your practice to your project – reflective practitioners – you can’t do an inquiry without reflective practice. Also models to students that we are lifelong learners.

Ways to integrate inquiry into your classroom:
Teachers need to be consistently changing and thinking about their practice to improve it for their students. Look at the tiny little things.
- gather people around you
- professional learning situations – lots of learning happens here – knowledge is pooled and developed – makes you feel valued
- relationship with students grows and builds in a way that you have never seen before

We make connections with other learning but in the end it is your own practice that will change. Your beliefs are valid and important and personal to you.

Match a model to it – this just happened during the process.

Handout – final article from Quest site - this will show you what you are going to gain from the inquiry.

Synectics Model – Jay Gordon – brings in creativity aspect

Presentations – be careful with a Mac


(see powerpoint too)

Students can answer low-level questions without thinking.

Students enter/exit classrooms with no more understanding of
what they've learned than "The Griney Groller" taught you!

We want students to engage in thinking at a deeper level. Importance of asking higher order questions – to ‘unpack’. The new curriculum wants students to use their thinking skills to create new knowledge.

Art Kosta – ‘Habits of Mind’
e.g. persistence, listening with empathy, thinking about thinking, ability to question and ability to determine accuracy etc.

Need to think about classroom cultures and constructing questions to encourage higher level thinking (see diagrams on powerpoint). Print off new Bloom’s taxonomy.

Establishing our Big Questions: we need balance, process is just as important as the product. Look at independent skills – frame learning around higher order questions.

Essential questions are:

- open-ended and resist a simple single right/wrong answer
- deliberately thought provoking counterintuitive and/or controversial
- require students to draw upon content knowledge and personal experience
- can be revisited throughout the unit
- lead to other essential questions posed by students

See ICE principle

Mentor Group Notes

Nikki Davidson – contact for assistance with setting up blog site
Presentation – new facility – can we use this for our presentations – Otakaro
Contact: Kirwee School; Cobham Intermediate; Fendalton School

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