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Teaching as Inquiry

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Started by Diane Mills 14 Nov 2013 5:27pm () Replies (1)

Thank you Alison for uploading your recent teacher inquiries.  I am adding in some thoughts here for you to consider for next year! :)

Professor John Hattie wrote: ".. the biggest effects on student learning occur when teachers  become learners of their own teaching".  Obviously though, there is more to it than that.  A robust school inquiry process needs to be implemented to maximize the opportunities for teachers to learn and for students to progress.

A shared starting place for the staff might be to talk about such things as:

 1.  What is powerful, important and worthwhile for students to learn?

Does our school curriculum reflect this?   future focused thinking – what is important for students to know and be able to do as they look towards their future and world of work?

2.  eLearning is about good quality teaching, learning and assessment, not about the tools to use– therefore exploring the inquiry in terms of quality learning for the students is first and foremost.  ‘IT tools’ should support the quality learning.

3.  What key competencies can we promote through the inquiry? Working independently, self management, thinking, using language, symbols and texts, relating to others, participating and contributing

4.  How can we support each other to gather robust appropriate baseline and final data? Formal assessment data but also some way of measuring well-being, engagement of students

5.     What teaching strategies will we put in place to support student learning? For example: How to work collaboratively, question effectively, manage self, find information, create new material

6.     How will we reflect and support each other to ensure that all of our inquiries are robust and worthwhile? Professional learning community within school and beyond such as the VLN

7.     How will we encourage teachers to use research information to support their professional learning? School visits, readings, conferences, local events, VLN groups and …

8.     What expectations will we have of teachers for reporting back on their inquiries?

One of our facilitators used the following as a feedback model:

  • Name/Inquiry title
  • What did you set out to achieve?
  • Target group, reason for working with them, intended outcomes.
  • What actually happened?
  • Include evidence here, actual or links to other docs, photos etc.
  • Why do you think there was a difference?
  • Feed forward to next inquiry cycle.

Done well, Teaching as Inquiry not only improves student achievement, but also builds capacity within the school to self reflect, improve teaching, learning and assessment and to continue to grow and develop.    


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