Wednesday, March 25, 2009

School is for asking questions...

I read a lot of blog posts today and spent some time (way too much) on Twitter. I always take away some new thought or reflection. In a post on Teaching with Technology Steve Kirkpatrick made a statement that made me think. He said,

"At which point did children stop going to school to ask questions and go to school to be given answers to remember?"

What have our schools become? How can we make our schools places where children come to ask questions? In another recent post, Angela Maiers shared a wonderful video of her lesson with first graders about how learners constantly ask questions. Take a moment to watch it.

I am wondering if we ever slow down enough so kids can ask the questions. If we don't take the time to stop and listen, their questions just might stop. That's a very scary thought. I can imagine a school where children walk through the door each day with a "Good morning", a smile to start the day, and a brain filled with questions and inquiries.

"Do you know..."
"I am wondering..."
"What might happen if..."
"How ..."
"Why..."

School would, once again, be a place where children came to ask questions. How would our classroom conversations be different? Would students feel differently about school? How would learning look and sound? I would like to find out.

2 comments:

The Book Chook said...

Your post is also thoughtworthy! Thanks!

Natalie said...

That is a great quote from Steve Kirkpatrick. As a high-school teacher, it is a pleasant surprise when a student approaches me with a question that doesn't relate to a due date or grade. Recently I've been delving into inquiry learning in an effort to get students asking questions again, and then taking the initiative in answering them. I found several ebooks on inquiry learning at http://www.dedicatedteacher.com that helped me develop my lessons and understand how to put the theory into practice. Inquiry learning is just one method to motivate students, though, and I'm constantly looking for other helpful strategies. Keep up the great blog!