Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Final Thoughts on Inquiry

Upon entering this course, I felt that much of inquiry was related to Science. Knowing that I do not teach Science on a daily basis, this worried me a bit based on how I would complete the tasks at hand. Throughout my time in class, I have come to learn and realize that inquiry is not just taught in Science, but rather curriculum wide. Sure, there is a strong need for it in a Science type of setting, and it may fit best here, but I have also come to realize that inquiry is formed through various skills. I have found that these types of skills are what students should be exposed to in all content areas as often as possible to help create lifelong learners.

I definitely want to make the implementation of inquiry a personal goal of mine for future lessons and years to come because I feel that it opens the doors for students. It helps to provide a sense of ownership for their learning, and it teaches them to search for answers. I think that taking an inquiry-based approach to all content areas will not only help to improve the quality of student understanding, but of student enjoyment as well. Inquiry allows students to fully participate in their learning, rather than simply absorbing it. A key component that I have learned from this course is that inquiry-based learning does not need to be hands-on, and not all hands-on learning is inquiry. When students discuss, debate, hypothesize, and draw connections, they are inquiring. During this time they are also discovering new things and actively participating in the learning process.

Teaching students how to discover and learn through inquiry provides them a wonderful educational experience that they can carry with them forever. Many life skills are developed through inquiry, that will help to create contributing members of society for our futures. I have thoroughly enjoyed learning about inquiry and I will strive to utilize these strategies within my classroom, and throughout all content areas, as often as possible!

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