questioning

SWAP TALK: A reflection at the end of the day

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As the day of a teacher ends, sometimes we ask ourselves if we have done enough or if we have done a lot. Questions occur while traveling home or even when taking a shower. And still at the end of the day, the only thing we can do is to wait for tomorrow and make things better. Here are random questions and activities that we can do or ask ourselves at the end of the day to aid us in planning for a better tomorrow.

Write down something everybody learned.

Write down something nobody learned.

 

Write down something different each child learned.

Name the child who already knew everything you taught.

Name the child who learned nothing.

 

Did you do anything other than group instruction?

Did you challenge pupils’ intellects?

 

Did anyone work on an independent learning problem?

Did you reject any child?

How many children failed to learn the lesson for the day?

 

Did anyone work on the board? Did you?

Did students do anything other than listen to you, write, read, and answer your question?

Did any child help another?

 

How often did you reinforce the children’s correct response?

Did you repeat every answer? For what?

How often did each child get a chance to talk, ask and answer?

 

Did any child ask a question?

Did the class laugh? Did you at someone, something with someone?

Were you angry?  Why?

 

Was any child angry? Why?

How many students did you praise? For what?

Did you teach reading (not just hear the students read)?

 

Did you teach new words before or after reading?

Did you read to the class? Why?

How do you feel about the day’s work?

 

These questions are just tips for us, teachers, to face a better tomorrow with our students in our class.

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As teachers, we need to pay attention to children’s emotional and social well-being as well as their academic progress. We need to create an environment in which learning can become a joyful experience for our students as well as other members of the school community.

By: Jose Noel Guasch Veloso

Grade 1 Class Teacher

BINUS SCHOOL Simprug

jveloso@binus.edu

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Framing questions to enhance student learning

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As part of our professional development at BINUS SCHOOL Simprug at the beginning of the academic year, we invited trainers from Australia to visit and share some of their experiences with us. The topics covered were framing questions and cooperative learning. Though we were implementing most of these in our teaching and learning already, fine-tuning and knowing the nuances to maximize active participation from our students, as well as balancing safe classrooms and accountability, were the highlights.

I am sure most of us must be wondering why framing questions is one of the basic skills a teacher should possess. Basically, questioning is a methodology that most teachers use to recapitulate and gauge student understanding. By framing questions, we encourage active participation of all students and maximize the learning that takes place in the classroom.

Most teachers may have experience with avoidance tactics from students when questions are posed to them. This is generally to hide their embarrassment in case the answer is wrong. By giving ‘wait time’, students’ thinking tends to shift from covert to being overt.

Let’s now see the characteristics of an unframed question and a framed question.binus-1Unframed questions do not provide students with the ‘wait time’ and this mostly leads to the same three or four students responding to the teacher’s questions. The fear of failure also affects the confidence of our students. On the other hand, framing questions allows the use of ‘wait time’, providing opportunities to rehearse within the safety of one’s mind, or with partners before sharing publicly, and leads to active participation and a safe classroom.

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Studies reveal that when students have time to think and share with partners before sharing to the class, they are more likely to feel secure and experience success.

Active participation by students can be seen when students feel safe and their self-esteem is maintained by demonstrating involvement in the thinking and learning process.  

When teachers apply the skill of framing questions, students feel safe and are more involved in their learning.

By Sujatha Sreenivasan

Grade 4 Level Head and Class Teacher

BINUS SCHOOL Simprug, South Jakarta

ssreenivasan@binus.edu