Unit 2: What Makes Inquiry So Difficult to Implement Well?


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Driving Question:

1. What are some of the difficulties with inquiry-based learning?


2. Demonstrate a positive attitude and increased comfort levels of implementing inquiry-based activities through self-assessments

2.1 List some of the common drawbacks to an inquiry-based approach

2.2 Share personal experiences with inquiry-learning

Before We Begin

Part of the reason you're taking this course is because inquiry is not easy for most of us to implement. In order for us to begin to learn some best practices and effective strategies we can implement, we must first identify the problem. I would like you to get started on Unit 2 by jotting down a few of the issues that keep you from effectively implementing inquiry labs. You'll use those ideas later on in the unit.

2.1 Difficulties with Inquiry

INTRODUCTION: So, what are some of the most common problems that we find when we try to use inquiry labs? In my experience, one of the top problems we run into is time. The time it takes to plan inquiry labs and the classroom time it takes to implement them. There are also the difficulties that come along with assigning open-ended group work. These are issues such as developing group norms, picking appropriate group activities, and monitoring group discussions. Many teachers have expressed concern over their ability to teach using inquiry, citing lack of proper training. There is also the concern that inquiry labs won't help student be adequately prepared for end of year exams. Inquiry labs are also difficult because students are often resistant to these open-ended activities.


2.2 Your turn: Sharing your own experiences with Inquiry

INTRODUCTION: Before we move ahead to the design stage, it is important for us to take a little time to and share our own experiences with inquiry learning and inquiry labs.s Perhaps you have experienced something that can help another teacher, or perhaps you might have some good pointers for someone else.


Move Ahead: Unit 3

Go back: Unit 1