12 Oct 2021
09:00 AM - 03:00 PM
A workshop for teachers in primary/middle years who want to take inquiry further and who believe in the power of personal passions!
Participants in this workshop will receive excerpts from Kath’s upcoming book “Getting Personal with Inquiry Learning”
“ Whatever your circumstances, you need to find time to be in your element – to do what gives you energy rather than what takes it from you.” Ken Robinson, 2013
There has been growing interest in ‘personalised learning’ for many years now. Increasingly, schools are making arrangements to provide more opportunities for learners to learn to be self-directed and to have their needs and interests met through the curriculum. An inquiry-based approach is an approach that recognizes the importance of learner voice and choice and of linking new learning to the existing knowledge, experiences and interests of the learner.
Teachers who use an inquiry based approach are committed to helping learners ‘learn to learn’ and to equipping them with the skills and dispositions to more independently investigate questions, problems, issues and interests. But what opportunities do we give learners to do this beyond the “units of inquiry” we may develop? How can we provide learners with real opportunities to follow their passions and to truly inquire into those things that matter to them? How can we do this in a way that is not overwhelming for learners or for educators! And why is this so important? What is the role of the educator in a more personalized inquiry experience?
In this workshop, we will investigate a range of ways that inquiry can be made more personally meaningful to learners. Importantly, this does not mean we abandon opportunities to inquire together. Both personal and collaborative inquiries can be woven into the school year.
We will explore the following questions with practical tasks and lots of recent examples from classrooms:
- Why is personal inquiry important? What’s our purpose?
- What is the teacher’s role in this and how can we apply quality conferring skills to scaffolding learner thinking in connection with their personal investigations.
- What can ‘personal inquiry’ look like as learners move through the school?
- How can we help learners identify their interests? How can we inspire wonderment and curiosity?
- How can we help learners design effective questions for their investigations?
- How can we make sure personal inquiry time is appropriately stretching? How do we help learners challenge themselves and go beyond the known?
- What skills and dispositions do learners need to make this work? How can we teach these?
- How can we make this manageable? What systems and routines and classroom set ups make it work?
- What resources are available to support this way of working?
This workshop would best suit teachers who already have some understanding of inquiry and are using this approach in some form in their school.
I would also recommend you come with at least one other colleague so you can collaborate on an action plan for your return to school.