Week Seven of ECS 410

This week we did a carousel with one of the stations being inquiry based teaching. Inquiry based learning is something we discuss in many of my classes. It focuses on student-centered learning, centers around questions and concepts, and has the teacher as the model and coach. Inquiry is great because it allows the students to take charge of their learning, while the teacher helps guide them in the right direction. We discussed content that would be good for inquiry learning, they are things that student show interest in, content that has practical connections to the real world, interpretation and analysis are required and show a value, social or moral dimension. With this class being about assessment one of the important things we discusses is how to assess inquiry based learning. One great way is to use rubrics, that can be filled in and updated as the students progress in their learning. The following link gives a quick summary of inquiry based learning:http://www.queensu.ca/ctl/resources/topicspecific/inquirybased.html

“When we give students the impression that we value the right answer more than critical thinking, we may drive them to take shortcuts and cheat.” -Chris Tovani. As a future math teacher, I need to encourage students to focus on the process in order to reach the correct answer. Though getting the correct answer is ideal, I think we need to pay less attention to that final value and more attention to the process leading up to the final answer. There were times in math classes where I would make one small miscalculation and end up getting the entire question wrong. I will not do this, if I encourage students to show their work, then I can see what students did and where the are unsure or could use improvement. I think this is crucial in supporting student learning , and helping to further students understanding.

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One thought on “Week Seven of ECS 410

  1. I completely agree with everything you are saying here. I find there are many similarities between teaching math and teaching science. As you say they encourage inquiry based learning in math, they do the same in science.
    From what you have said it sounds like our own high school education experiences were very similar. It was very focused on getting the right answer and if you didn’t get it right then the majority if not all marks were lost. Inquiry based learning takes more of an exploring approach. It allows students to be curious and explore on their own while making mistakes that only enhance the learning in the end.

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