Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Learning Science Through Inquiry
About the Workshop
Helpful Hints


About the Workshop


Workshop 1. What Is Inquiry and Why Do It?

This introductory workshop presents an overview of why inquiry is such a powerful approach to teaching and learning science — how it enables you to assess and meet the needs of a wide range of learners, how it taps children's natural curiosity, and how it deepens their understanding of science.

Workshop 2. Setting the Stage: Creating a Learning Community

At the heart of inquiry teaching and learning is a positive environment that encourages and supports students on their learning paths. This program looks at what is needed for building that foundation and preparing your students for inquiry investigations.

Workshop 3. The Process Begins: Launching the Inquiry Exploration

To inquire into specific scientific phenomena, students need to draw upon a foundation of experience. This program shows how you can encourage students to share and discuss what they already know, and to explore the materials and phenomena in an open-ended manner.

Workshop 4. Focus the Inquiry: Designing the Exploration

Students' open exploration leads to a range of interests and questions that lead in turn to deeper investigation. This program looks at the design process—how you can guide students to plan and begin their investigations.

Workshop 5. The Inquiry Continues: Collecting Data and Drawing Upon Resources

This program explores ways that inquirers collect and record first-hand data, just as scientists do, and observe, raise questions, make predictions, test hypotheses, and develop understanding. It also examines how other resources and outside expertise can help your students formulate patterns and relationships.

Workshop 6. Bring It All Together: Processing for Meaning During Inquiry

Making meaning from investigations and experience requires that you guide student dialogue, encouraging your students to make connections, draw conclusions, and ask new questions. This program looks at the rationale for this kind of processing, and strategies that can help students construct new mental frameworks.

Workshop 7. Assessing Inquiry

Assessment is an ongoing process in the classroom. This program looks at a variety of assessment strategies that range from the very informal formative assessments to formal summative assessments, and explores the purposes each can serve.

Workshop 8. Connecting Other Subjects to Inquiry

This program explores how to use subjects like mathematics and language to further scientific inquiry and understanding of science concepts, and conversely, how science can aid learning in other subjects. It also reiterates the benefits of learning science through inquiry and explores your "next steps" along the inquiry journey.

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