5 Examples of Inquiry Based Learning

Inquiry based learning helps students become more creative and independent. Inquiry-based learning provides more opportunities for students to develop problem coping, solving and researching skills.

Inquiry Planning

Student planning is the first phase of the inquiring-learning process. Students must understand that the primary purpose of inquiry-based learning projects is to develop acquisition learning skills in tandem with curiosity and optimism. Many schools will offer standard plans and directions for integrating inquiry-based learning activities. Schools usually vary the content areas from year to year to ensure that students are properly learning and improving their knowledge, but these standard plans may change with new technology or regulations. Students may work with a familiar teacher who can help them identify areas of interest and available resources. Teachers may choose a curriculum-based theme that matches students’ background or experience.

Information Retrieving

Students should think about the information they have currently and the information that they still need. This activity is enjoyable because students can actively search for new information related to their ideal topic. An overwhelming number of resources and possibilities may result in students being frustrated or bored with finding specific data for their inquiry. Teachers help students organize and retrieve information through demonstrating search skills and screening strategies for selecting relevant information. Students may work with a librarian to select online and print resources. Students will learn library literacy skills and strategies for integrating information into their project. Teachers sometimes intentionally choose a complex topic that requires research, which helps students realize the importance of the issue.

Project Processing

Teachers should decide on the scope and final result of the inquiry activity. Those who are teaching inquiry-based learning for the first time should limit the project’s scope by controlling the time, topic selection and the deliverable formats. Teachers must consider how many product formats are acceptable and what is the minimum amount of information required from struggling students. Narrowing the project’s topic involves the creation of an authentic question, a personal perspective or a thesis statement for older students.

Creativity Skills

Empowering students to be creative involves organizing information, putting concepts into one’s own words and creating a suitable presentation format. Students will feel more confident during this activity, so it’s a good time to include new learning or advanced resources. Teachers should provide students with tips on how to stay focused and organized during presentations. Some teachers have students create timelines that determine the order in which the inquiry activity be taught. Most inquiry projects are scheduled during the middle point to the end of a curriculum unit because students must first learn background knowledge.

Project Sharing

Students who have been given sufficient support through the inquiry process will be proud of their project and open to sharing it with others. This is a good time to teach students public speaking and presentation skills. It is best for teachers to model a presentation and have students practice presenting to each other, which will reduce anxiety and help them improve their overall presentation. Teachers may allow students to present in different formats, such as digital, print and multimedia. A quick and simple process is best because students will feel relieved when they have an established focus for the inquiry.

When teachers design inquiry based learning activities, they should integrate them with the curriculum, relate them to students’ past experiences and promote them with lifelong learning and critical thinking skills. Readers can explore more inquiry-based learning resources and downloads here.