3 Key Concepts in Effective Teaching – Differentiation, Self Direction, and Innovation

When I think about all the rubrics for effective teaching, whether is the Danielson Rubric or a state or district created document- there are a few key concepts that we all are striving for in future ready classrooms.

Here I’m going to show how GID is a framework that helps educators to achieve each of these concepts.

  1. DIFFERENTIATION

One of our biggest challenges in classrooms is to make sure that all of our students are engaging in increasingly challenging material for their abilities. Differentiation is the work we do to accommodate all our learners to ensure that they have access to a high level of instruction. That they are each successful with their work so that they are challenged and continually progress.

The Inquiry Tools of Guided Inquiry Design are a part of the framework that supports educators to differentiate learning through inquiry. The Inquiry Tools are based on the strategies that students named, in Kuhlthau’s research, as things that helped them persevere through the inquiry process (Kuhlthau’s 6 C’s – see below).

*Chart of 6 C’s in (Guided Inquiry Design, 2012, p 37)  and (Inquiry Tools in Guided Inquiry Design p. 40)

The Six C’s (Kuhlthau, 2004)

Collaborate Work jointly with others.
Converse Talk about ideas for clarity and further questions.
Compose Write all the way along, not just at the end; keep journals.
Choose Select what is interesting and pertinent.
Chart Visualize ideas using pictures, timelines, and graphic organizers.
Continue Develop understanding over a period of time.

In GID we translated the 6 C’s as Inquiry Tools that would be embedded throughout each phase of the process. It’s hard to keep all those strategies in our heads all the time while teaching and planning lessons.  Guided Inquiry Design makes it easier. Teachers use the Inquiry Tools to differentiate and support learners at all levels to deeply engage in their learning. Routine use of the Inquiry Tools facilitates active learning through the inquiry process.

Guided Inquiry Design: Inquiry Tools (Figure 3.2 in Guided Inquiry Design p.40)
Inquiry communities

for collaborating

An inquiry community is a collaborative environment where students learn with each other in a large group.
Inquiry circles

for conversing

Inquiry circles are small groups organized for conversations about interesting ideas, meaningful questions, and emerging insights.
Inquiry journals

for composing

Inquiry journals provide a way for individuals to compose and reflect throughout the inquiry process.
Inquiry logs

for choosing

Inquiry logs provide a way of keeping track of the quality sources that are chosen as important for addressing an inquiry question.
Inquiry charts

for charting

Inquiry charts provide a way to visualize, organize, and synthesize ideas in the inquiry process.
Inquiry tools

for continuing

All of the inquiry tools are for continuing and sustaining the inquiry process to completion.

See this blog post on IEP’s and student learning with GID (Post from our blog in 2016)

  1. SELF DIRECTED LEARNERS

We all want engaged students.  Self direction and engagement go hand in hand.

For learners to become self directed, they must first understand themselves as a learner. Then they can come to know strategies that support their own learning. Within the phases and sessions of Guided Inquiry Design students have the advantage of consistent self reflection.  Through regular and routine reflection, students have time to think about, not only, what they are learning, but how they are learning it.

In these reflections, students reflect on their use of the Inquiry Tools.  The tools keep them active in the process as they write, talk with others, collaborate, chart and choose.  At the end of each session each day, students reflect on how these and other tasks supported their thinking and learning.

Teachers and librarians alike benefit from professional development on how to embed these tools into inquiry based learning.  The GID institute supports the efficient use of these tools so that the learning team of teachers and librarian can gather important student data on learning and support them to know how they can direct their own learning as a result. Knowing our learners is a first step to helping them know themselves and the Inquiry Tools are a structure that helps you to do just that.

  1. INNOVATION

Creating is the product of learning-  creation of new thinking, new connections, and new understandings.  The process of Guided Inquiry Design leads students to a meaningful Create phase.  In the CREATE phase students take time to consider what they have learned and what they can create in order to share that learning and information with others.

Rather than creation for creation sake, students follow the path of research to ask meaningful questions, seek relevant information and create to communicate their ideas and understandings with the world, to make a difference, tell a story, or invent something new.  Invention is part of the GID process, and GID practitioners recognize the importance of the guidance we can provide to have our students reach higher places with their research and innovation.

 

Leslie Maniotes, PhD

Co-creator of guidedinquirydesign.com