Wow, what can I say this world is BIG...and the internet is INFINITE! Inquiry Based Learning is the buzz word we have heard for years in education classes, blogs, faculty meetings, but when you factor in the internet a whole new world is seen for our classrooms. The article by Neil Stephenson Introduction to Inquiry Based Learning helps teachers see 8 principles that should be part of a lesson: Authenticity, Understanding, Performances, Assessment, Technology, Expertise, Success, and Citizenship. When you team Inquiry Based Learning with SAMR Model developed by Ruben Puentedura you start creating a classroom that is preparing students for the 21st century. This really makes me think about what has been happening in my classroom for the past few years. In the past I know I was a better teacher than I am today. I remember having in-depth assignments where students produced a product that was awesome and they were the teachers. I have had kids make videos, create books, posters, power-points and more, but now I am always worried about teaching every single standard before the EOCT. What am I really teaching anymore? It is frustrating, because on one hand we are told to create lessons that require deep understanding and students create their own solutions. On the other hand we have to cover so many standards in one semester that all I have time to do is direct instruction, where I am teaching anywhere from 3-5 new concepts a class period and I still don't get finished with all the standards. Travel back in time and remember Geometry and Algebra II, remember that was two years of math. Georgia's Analytic Geometry course covers all of Accelerated Geometry of the past, and 2/3 of Algebra II. Imagine being a student who struggles with math and all you have is one semester to learn all of that material...it is daunting.
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What is Inquiry Based Learning?
It is when you create a lesson that requires your students to solve a real world problem that is relevant to their lives right now. It is a lesson where they ask the questions and use a number of resources to find a way to create a solution. What would make it even better? Students are using technology to extend, publish, communicate, and collaborate with experts, peers, teachers, and community members to create a valid solution that they discovered and produced.
Thinking out loud about a lesson:
Topic: Lying with Statistics
Collaboration: Students will work in small groups. Research online share with other people digitally.
Make it Relevant: Have student's come up with a topic they are passionate about and gather data: internet, interviews, online surveys, etc.
Show them what you want: Give examples of graphs in the real world that are just wrong, that fool the person into believing something that is not true. Use Blendspace to develop my portion of the lesson.
Now the Creation: Have students use any Web 2.0 tool they choose to display their data that is true, and then create the lie. Make people believe what they want with a graph that is modified to Lie with Statistics.
Relation to the Real World: Why would knowing how to do this help them in the real world?
Self-Evaluation: Use a rubric as a guide and for students to reflect on their own work.
Share: Student can post their work on the class website.