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Title: Effective Questioning in the Classroom

Topic/Purpose

The title of the course I am developing is Effective Questioning in the Classroom. This course will provide an introduction to the way questions should be used in the classroom in order to encourage higher order thinking. The following questions will direct the design of this course:

  • What is higher order thinking?
  • What is the purpose of using questioning strategies?
  • In what ways can questions be used in the classroom?
  • What are the demands of questioning on the students and the teacher?

Learning Outcomes

The intent of this course is to enlighten educators on how to use questioning strategies effectively in the classroom. Learners will be able to:

  • List the purposes and benefits of questioning (Verbal)
  • Identify ways of using and applying questions during instruction (Verbal Information and Intellectual Skill)
  • Evaluate whether or not effective questioning strategies are being used (Cognitive Strategy)
  • Recall the demands of questioning on the learner and the teacher (Verbal)
  • Choose to use effective questioning strategies in the classroom (Attitude)

Needs Assessment

Problem

It has been greatly considered that students learn better and are able to develop a deeper understanding of material when effective questions are used. However, often times it seems teachers are unsure how to use effective questioning strategies and/or encourage students to ask questions of themselves as a learner. As teacher's, by providing students with effective questioning, students are given the opportunity to develop and use higher order thinking throughout the learning process. Teachers can not be the only ones to ask questions in the classroom and it is equally important for students themselves to ask questions and engage in deeper thought during the learning process, in order to better stimulate their thinking and learning.

In my experience teaching, I have gathered that questioning indeed helps students have a better understanding of any given topic. I have had a lot of experience in many different classrooms with many different learners throughout my teaching career thus far. No matter the age, no matter the intellectual level, questions seem to keep students focused and on task. This year I am working as a teacher's assistant for first grade where I go between six different classrooms throughout the day. While in the classrooms I am able to observe the way questions are being used or are NOT being used across subjects in the classroom. Questions should be used throughout all parts of a lesson, at the beginning to introduce a topic, in the middle, and at the end to wrap things up and review what was learned. Overall, teachers should be using effective questioning strategies in the classroom with students more often, and working towards making students more aware of themselves as learners now and in the future.

What is to be Learned

Learners will become informed about how to use effective questioning strategies in the classroom and be familiar with how to encourage students how to use similar questioning strategies to help them grow as learners and thinkers.One lesson that I plan on developing for this unit is a lesson that will focus on the types of questions teachers should be asking their students. I also plan on developing a lesson that focuses on how teachers can encourage students to ask questions themselves in regards to where they are in their learning process and how they can improve on what they are trying to learn.

The Learners

In general, this course will be used for educators and other professionals in the education field seeking knowledge about how to use effective questioning strategies in the classroom. Not only will learners become more knowledgeable about how to use effective questioning strategies themselves, but they should also be able to use what is learned in this course and apply it to the classroom(s) they are working in.

Instructional Context

All instruction will take place online, so in order to successfully complete this course students will need to have access to a computer with working internet connection. Instruction will vary slightly depending on the unit being taught, however the majority of resources in this course will come from readings, videos, and/or lectures. Participants will be assessed through a series of activities dealing with scenarios dealing with using effective questioning strategies in the classroom.

Exploring the Problem and Solution

Participants will continuously explore the effects of student learning when questioning strategies are not used or modeled in the classroom environment, as well as the reasoning behind the importance of using effective questioning strategies in the classroom. Through activities and other various assignments, participants will be able to recognize a variety of effective questioning strategies that can be used int he classroom with students.

Goals

The main goal for this mini-course is for participants to gain a better understanding of what effective questioning is and how to implement it in their own classrooms. By the end of this course participants should feel sure of themselves and be able to use questioning strategies that were gone over in this mini-course and use them in real life situations to help students learn and grow as life long thinkers.

Performance Objectives

At the conclusion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Classify the purpose of using effective questioning strategies in the classroom
  • Identify examples of different questioning strategies can be used in the classroom with teachers and students
  • Execute at least three questioning strategies in the classroom by first modeling to students how to use effective questioning strategies
  • Develop a list of different questioning strategies that could be used in the classroom with students and explain why these specific strategies would be helpful for student learning

Task Analysis

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Unit 1:

The purpose of using effective questioning strategies in the classroom

  1. The learner will define higher order thinking
  2. The learner will identify the purpose of using effective questioning strategies in the classroom (Pre-requisite)
  3. The learner will understand what an effective question is by developing a list of possible questions
  4. The learner will actively participate in activities (Pre-requisite)
  5. The learner will be engaged in wanting to learn more about the topic (Pre-requisite)

Unit 2:

In what ways can questions be used in the classroom?

  1. The learner will watch several videos of different types of questioning strategies being used in the classroom to engage students
  2. The learner will see how effective questioning strategies benefit the student learning by watching real life videos
  3. The learner will understand different ways of using questioning strategies in the classroom
  4. The learner will write a paragraph about one type of questioning strategy explaining who it would be used by and why that type of question would be beneficial


Unit 3:

What are the demands of questioning on the student and the teacher?
  1. The learner will understand the ways in which questioning can be used by the teacher and the students
  2. The learner will see how questions can be similar and different when used by the teacher and the students
  3. The learner will complete a compare and contrast sheet after unit information is given
  4. The learner will analyze the chart and understand the ways questions are used by teachers and by students

Unit 4:

Are effective questioning strategies being properly implemented in the classroom on a regular basis?

  1. The learner will follow step by step instructions (Pre-requisite)
  2. The learner will evaluate if and how questioning strategies are being used in their classrooms
  3. The learner will recall the demands of questioning on the teacher and students
  4. The learner will take a self-assessment to evaluate how much they have learned from this mini-course

Curriculum Map

The link below outlines each unit for this mini course, the objectives, as well as the activities that will be completed during each unit. To view the curriculum outline map for this course click the link below:

Media:Mini_course_curriculum_map.pdf

Mini-Course Units

Click on the following link to view the four units designed for the Effective Questioning Strategies mini-course:

Mini-Course Units

References and Resources

Anderson, A. Letting Students Ask the Questions--And Answer Them. Learn NC: UNC School of Education. Web http://www.learnnc.org/lp/pages/661.


Asking Questions to Improve Learning. (2009). The Teaching Center. Web http://teachingcenter.wustl.edu/strategies/Pages/asking-questions.aspx.


Ballast, S. Higher Level Thinking: Video. (September 7, 2011). Web http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4tQoOX8BFA.

Bowker, M.H. (Fall, 2010). Teaching Students to Ask Questions Instead of Answering Them. (p. 127-134) The NEA Higher Education Journal. Web http://www.nea.org/assets/img/PubThoughtAndAction/Bowkershort.pdf.


Gagne, R.M., Wager, W.W., Golas, K.C., & Keller, J.M. (2005). Principles of Instructional Design (5th Ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadworth/Thomson Learning.

Inquiry-Based Approaches to Learning. (2005). Glencoe/McGraw-Hill, Inc. Web http://www.glencoe.com/sec/teachingtoday/subject/inquiry_based.phtml.


Linton, J. (2013). Effective Questioning: Powerpoint. Petal School District. Web http://petalschools.com/Page/89.

Sockalingam, N.(May 4, 2011). Questioning Skills to Engage Students. Magna Publications. Web http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-and-learning/questioning-skills-to-engage-students/.


Von-Westling, S. (July 27, 2012). Strategies for Student-Centered Discussion. The Teaching Channel. Web http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxTuPVtayOI.