Questioning in the classroom

Topics: Question, Education in the Republic of Ireland, Leaving Certificate Pages: 13 (5582 words) Published: May 20, 2014
Contents

The Inquiry P2 The Educational Situation P3 Data Collection and Analysis P6 Conclusions from Analysis of Data P9 Plan and Set Action Steps P12 Monitor the Change P14 Analyse Evaluative Data about the Change P16 Review the Change and decide what to do next. P19 Bibliography P21 Appendixes P22

The Inquiry:
‘While reflective practice can be used to identify problems, action research can seek to provide solutions’.1 By undertaking this action research project I will delve into my own practice in order to understand and improve it. A performance gap is described as the discrepancy between what you do and what you are actually doing.2 I have recognised that my performance gap lies in questioning. I am concerned as I feel I have not reached a substantial and consistent level of effective questioning in my classroom, as these should be one of the most effective weapons in a teacher’s arsenal. They can be designed to stimulate curiosity, provoke ideas, clarify concept and challenge beliefs. This also sends a clear message that students are expected to be active participants in the learning process. In order to rectify this issue I need to enhance the quality, level, distribution and technique of my questioning (QLDT). I have identified this concern drawing from the collection of evidence I have gathered from critical incidents that happen in the classroom; feedback from supervisors, co-operating teachers, deviate group and students; entries in my reflective journal; and video and audio recordings of my classroom. In order to ensure that I am keeping with best pedagogical practises and checking my perceptiveness; I will converse with fellow student teachers, cooperating teachers, supervisors and colleagues. This will engage me in a process that integrates reflection with planning for action and moves me beyond the single loop learning.3

The Educational Situation:
‘Inspired by the vision of Catherine McAuley, school name* is committed to the holistic development of each student. As a Catholic school, we pursue excellence in an inclusive, caring and respectful environment’.4 The school I am working in for my TP is a Catholic girl’s school in the Mercy tradition under the Trusteeship of CEIST located in the centre of Carlow Town with an enrolment of 913 girls in the school year 2013-2014. The vision of CEIST is to have a compassionate and just society inspired by the life and teachings of Jesus Christ whose mission is to provide a holistic education in the Catholic Tradition.5 The school operates an open enrolment system with the vast majority of students coming from the local primary schools. Students also travel from the surrounding hinterlands such as Bagenalstown, Athy, Stradbally, Ballon, Baltinglass, Hacketstown and Tullow. The main school building comprises two large buildings linked by a corridor, an extensive sports hall, a hockey pitch with a surrounding running track and a grass football pitch. The school has 35 classrooms, 3 Art Rooms, Assembly Hall, Biology Laboratory, Chemistry Laboratory, Physics Laboratory, 2 Computer Rooms, 3 Home Economics Rooms, Craft Room, Geography Room, Language Laboratory, Library, Music Room, Photography Room and Technology Laboratory. In first...

Bibliography: Dillon, J.T. (1988). Questioning and Teaching: A manual of practice. London: Harvard University Press.
Postman, N. (1979). Teaching as a Conserving Activity. New York: Dell, Laurel Press.
Kyraciou, C. (2007). Essential teaching Skills. Cheltenham: Nelson Hornes Ltd.
Walsh, Brendan & Dolan, Rose (2009) A Guide to Teaching Practice in Ireland Dublin: Gill & Macmillan.
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