Best Practices PYP – Inquiry based Classroom(Day 1)

For today’s CPD, we learn and revise about the definition of inquiry and how it can be implemented in the classroom.

First session – What is inquiry?

Clock partners was introduced by Ms Lee as a grouping strategy in class and to be used in future classroom activities. To start an inquiry, the CSI method was taught (Color/symbol/images). It was interesting as we  can use it to test students prior knowledge about a topic and also a tool to gauge what students have understand.

Through some  short reading sessions, we defined the meaning of inquiry in our words using keywords that we found in articles given to us. Subsequently,  we read some articles about the types of inquiry and created a Venn diagram about the types of inquiry. With some analysis, we could identify the similarities and the differences of the types of inquiries (structured, guided, open).

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Structured inquiry: Teacher provide the questions and materials with procedures already devised by the teachers. Students just have to follow through all the procedures in order to produce the expected product.

Guided inquiry: Teacher provides the questions and materials but the procedure to inquire is formed by the students.

Open inquiry: Students are responsible to come up with the questions and procedures to perform the inquiry of the topic given to them.

Session 2: How does inquiry look like?

The inquiry process was described in detail. There are 5 components to the inquiry process: Tuning-in, Finding out, Sorting out, Going further, Making Conclusion and Reflection.

Different types of activities can take place at different parts of the inquiry cycle. Apart from that, the questions or statements that could be mentioned by the students were discussed as well as the questions or statements that teachers can use to prompt the inquiry.

Session 3: Assessed curriculum

A few situations based on subjects were given to identify whether it was an activity or performance task given to the students. Activities were used as part of the learning and the performance task was used as part of assessment.  The way statements are constructed to indicate activity or performance task is very important.

After that, we filled up a Frayer’s model on the definition of assessment, facts/characteristics of assessment, example and non-examples of assessment.

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Subsequently after that, we did a mapping of the summative assessments we planned to see the relevance of the assessment to the learning.

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Session 4: Differentiation

The last session of the CPD is about differentation. We learn to identify different learning styles and multi intelligence through self-assessment. It was interesting to see how we were as learners as it affects the way we teach in class.

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