Inquiry Learning and its Origins


Inquiry Learning and Problem- Based Learning are grounded in similar theories of understanding. Whether it be project-based learning, design thinking or genius hour, it’s easy to get confused by the many education buzzwords floating about. But at their heart these pedagogies are all student-centered and there are commonalities across them that are the key to their success and far more critical than keeping the jargon straight. Naturally, educators want to understand each of these frameworks in order to make an informed decision as to how to best meet the needs of their students. The “Tree of Inquiry” is a visual guide for educators who are interested in shifting their practice but are unsure where to begin. Inquiry-based learning is the foundation for all of these student-centered strategies — students are asking their own questions, discovering answers and using their teachers as resources and guides. Schools and classrooms where deep inquiry is clearly at work invariably possess four specific characteristics no matter the specific type of inquiry utilized.

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