With the result that as we grow older, we stop asking questions. When I first started writing my Teacherhead blog, a few years ago, I wanted to explore the idea of what “great teaching” might look like.I often use the idea of teaching being “great” as an alternative to the hubristic hyperbole of “outstanding” (forever tarnished by associations with meeting external inspection demands) or the functional dryness of “effective” or merely “good”.An early series of 10 posts was called Great Lessons. Clearly this is not the right type of questioning to stimulate the mathematical thinking that can arise from engagement in open problems and investigations. Please read the full Great Lessons Series: 1. This article will guide you through the 9 key questioning skills that, together with other teaching strategies, will have the most impact on your teaching and your classroom practice. The challenge is that you need to think on your feet to inject follow-up questions that support deeper learning. Research indicates that asking questions is second only to lecturing. I am not going to try to emulate the fabulous work in these blogs on questioning: 1) Alex Quigley  http://huntingenglish.wordpress.com/2012/11/10/questioning-top-ten-strategies/, 2) John Sayers http://sayersjohn.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/questioning.html. Joy, Its great to read and is very helpful.. Here you can see several effective questions with various goals for teacher learning. #shortpost. Provocative Rider: Wind them up with a secondary question. The majority of these 9 are open questions; they require longer, more thought out answers than those that only need a simple, short response (closed questions). They are also useful when seeking full understanding about an issue. As you go through your lessons, you should pose questions for students to answer or require them to respond orally to topics the class is discussing. 1997. Therefore, in this study I have chosen to focus on the specific questions where teachers are probing … The is by asking appropriate questions that encourage understanding in students. Does anyone disagree? I think two of them are especially important.Checking for understandingOn any day I spend observing lessons, where teaching isn’t perhaps as effective as it could be, it’s common to find a teacher simply asking questions into the room – “anyone know the answer?” – then only inviting those with hands up to respond.Sometimes you see a teacher ask the almost rhetorical question “is everyone okay with that?”, taking the subsequent nods and murmurs to indicate a green light to move on. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Asking students to rehearse the line of reasoning in a maths or science problem or any more extended question response. You are both getting better feedback. 6. sk A students to read the passage and work through the questions that the teacher has pre-pared for them, using the questioning style that the teacher modeled for them. Visit https://teacherhead.com/The Learning RainforestThe Learning Rainforest: Great teaching in real classrooms is published by John Catt Educational and costs £16. Relationship building: people generally respond positively if you ask about what they do or enquire about their opinions. Probing is a form of questioning that encourages students to extend their verbal answers in the classroom. He is the author of, The Learning Rainforest. The teacher modelling appropriate types of questions e.g. Top-down observation and feedback models are flawed. The key is to try to ask for feedback – to check for understanding – from several students, using other strategies like “cold calling”, where any student could be asked to answer if selected, to ensure that nobody opts out. Probing questions are intended to promote critical thinking as well as to get the person asked to explore their personal thoughts and feelings about a particular subject. The real power comes when you combine these two techniques and make them your default mode of teaching. My favourite teacher, Mr King – and the relationships that really matter. That could be true but is that the main reason in this particular line? Is there a different way to say the same thing? teachers and school leaders working in secondary education across the UK. There is discipline; everyone listens to everyone else as the probing continues. It took me a term to get used to this method but this method revolutionised my classroom when I adopted it, and made teaching and learning much more fun. select appropriate types of questions for particular teaching situations design a sequence of questions to deepen learning on a particular topic ask questions that help learners learn to think like a professional ask questions that help learners become better learners manage question and answer exchanges to encourage participation. “Michael, tell us what the task is and how we will know when we’ve completed it.” If Michael, and then Jodie or Evan, can’t give a good answer, it will pay to re-explain. it’s where we should begin. Imagine a teacher discussing poem using probing questioning. Are you sure? A focusing question pattern blends information gathering, probing, reflection and justification. This … Every time you have a question, you select multiple students to respond, checking their understanding, sampling the room as much as you can, and for each student you engage in a probing exchange. 5 Types of Probing Questions. Questioning is the cornerstone of great teaching. Probing questions are useful in most teaching situations. You need to listen and respond in and agile manner. This is what they could be saying: It seems to me, on reflection, that the natural tendency to hold exchanges like this with individuals or a whole class is a key feature of excellent teachers. Questions serve a number of essential purposes. What is the theme that links all those ideas together? It is just you and them.. and a really good key question. When I jotted down the list of features of what I see in great lessons, I was mentally surveying all the fabulous teachers I’ve known, imagining them in action and thinking about what they were doing. Reaching into the corners: 12 ways learning can be hard – and what to do about it. Unfortunately, research shows that 93% of teacher questions are "lower order" knowledge based questions focusing on recall of facts (Daines, 1986). Spontaneously, as an interlocking element,  the whole-class exchange is re-directed regularly so students discuss in pairs or groups, giving everyone an opportunity to engage. Funnel Questions. A four-year-old asks on average about 400 questions per day, and an adult hardly asks any. When teachers try to untangle this cognitive mess, they sacrifice personalization for efficiency. According to research cited in "Effective Teaching," these types of questions have a 90-95% student response rate. Optional Practice Activity: Form two lines (A and B) of students facing each other so that everyone has Given that you cannot tell from superficial indicators how well the material in hand is being learned in real time, you need to maximise the degree of feedback you receive from your students during the teaching process to give you an idea of how well things are going. And this is just the beginning! Used together, these questions can help the teacher think about specific interactions in her classroom, analyze those moments, and brainstorm ways to implement her effective behaviors more consistently. Questions number of questions students ask and the Increase number of experiments they need to an-swer the questions multiply. How teachers respond to erroneous answers is critical in maintaining trust and developing curiosity. Teaching Strategies Teaching Resources Instructional Strategies Teaching Art Teaching Tools Teaching Ideas Writing Skills Writing Tips Study Skills. You, meanwhile, get a much clearer idea of how your teaching of the concepts has taken shape in his memory. Number one on the list was “probing” – the art of skilful, probing questioning.My hunches about this were well-founded. It is this: the teacher is asking probing questions. ... is that the student may learn the process of searching for answers to his own questions rather than relying on the teacher. For example, asking students, “what is the best position to receive the ball in?” Technique question: a verbal statement by the teacher that requires a student response regarding technique. Why does it get smaller? (Dylan William). Autonomy with accountability. it taught my students to think like a scientist (I taught physics). Awe 9.Possibilities 10. A good probing question is worded in such a way to encourage individuals to provide details in their answers. These questions can be used be the teacher to guide the children through investigations while stimulating their mathematical thinking and gathering information about their knowledge and strategies. ( Log Out /  That’s the gist of it… but is could you say that more fluently. See chapters 9 and 15 in Evidence Based Teaching if you want to use Assertive questioning, or chapter 24 in Teaching Today. When good practice is embedded it is organic and doesn’t feel like a stuck-on activity plucked from a toolkit. To have the desired effect, these questions need to be effective, well-considered, and challenging. I’ve started with this because I like to think that an outstanding teacher would be outstanding in a field or on a desert island (or in the KEGS outdoor classroom) with no kit, no resources and nothing to write on. I often use the idea of teaching being “great” as an alternative to the hubristic hyperbole of “outstanding” (forever tarnished by associations with meeting external inspection demands) or the functional dryness of “effective” or merely “good”. Barak Rosenshine, in his excellent article Principles of Instruction, describes how effective teachers utilise questioning a central feature of their practice: “Effective teachers ask a large number of questions and check the responses of all students: questions help students practise new information and connect new material to their prior learning.”. How does that answer compare to that answer? Some of the best discussions take the form of ‘chats’, often outside the classroom, when paraphrasing and clarification can take place more naturally. 1) It is the spirit of an idea that is important, not the letter. Zest for Learning… into the rainforest of teaching. That’s true, but why do you think that is? • Think of probing questions as being on a continuum, from “recommendation” to “most effective probing question” as a way to distinguish between suggestions, advice giving, and probing questions. It involves asking students what they notice and encouraging them to communicate their thoughts clearly. Implementing change from the ground up. That’s interesting, what makes you say that? SecEd prides itself on being written by teachers, for teachers and offering a positive and constructive voice for Probing questions are useful in most teaching situations. The art of modelling… it’s all in the handover. . You can also insist that answers build on previous responses so students are fully engaged in what others are saying and referencing this to their own understanding. This technique involves starting with general questions, and then drilling down to … The five forms of feedback I give to teachers most often... Re-thinking Observation and Feedback: Solving the learning problems. Probing is an important skill in teaching. two questions the teacher has already created. Practice: Make it the default that, in any given exchange, you are asking each student, 3,4,5 questions before moving on, probing for understanding, checking for misconceptions, adding extra challenge, providing scaffolding to engineer success. And how is that connected to the first part? Asking questions is an important part of any teacher's daily interaction with their students. Probing: The initial response of students may be superficial. (Mary James), 2) In improving as teachers, we are not collecting tools, we seeking to change our habits… the things we do automatically every day. Here is a typical questioning pattern: What is the evidence that supports that suggestion? Teachers 7. . In all the talk of improving teaching and learning, sometimes – no often – there is too much talk about the model OfSTED lesson. Probing customers can be a tough task when dealing with impatient customers. For customers that seem to be in a rush, an advisor can frame the conversation differently. How did you know that? Allow students to ask questions or share ideas in class anonymously, or without "speaking out" — circulate note cards for students to write questions or comments, or to answer your questions, perhaps anonymously, and collect and address them.Online tools such as Question Cookie and Tricider can help students ask questions or share comments. Asking probing, high-quality questions in the classroom, http://www.aft.org/sites/default/files/periodicals/Rosenshine.pdf. They tick off questions as they are answered and ask about anything not covered at the end. Yet … After teaching a class session, teaching a help session, collecting an assignment, or administering an exam, take brief notes on which questions were the most effective at achieving the goals you had set and which questions led to answers that you did not expect. Using Classroom . I am planning to create a series of short posts called Great Lessons that focus on aspects of routine practice – because lessons can be routinely outstanding. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. Eliciting, soliciting, and redirecting are all useful for guiding students to have success. There is an intensity to it: solid classroom management is securing complete attention from everyone….eyes front, listening intently… and the teacher is probing. International Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology: Vol. Is it true for everyone or just some people? Taxonomy of Educational Objectives. It is this: the teacher is asking probing questions. Probing questions are asked to clarify a situation, to provide detail to an answer already given or to understand a person's feelings. They are typically open-ended questions, meaning the answers are primarily subjective. Focusing on the kinds of questions we ask in classrooms and the strategies we use can help us achieve this. It isn’t about sticking to the rules. Interesting to think how to use these techniques to teach a language. Very often variations in their responses gives you important information in a way that a single response can’t. 6. sk A students to read the passage and work through the questions that the teacher has pre-pared for them, using the questioning style that the teacher modeled for them. Is Everyone Thinking? A probing question is often asked after an initial open-ended question. You can use a number of techniques to help elicit more detailed answers from students as they respond to your prompts and questions. For example, ask the rest of the class to respond to an idea that one student has just presented, or ask the student who answered to explain the thinking that led to their answer. An early series of 10 posts was called Great Lessons. Do we have enough for a 4 mark answer? Questions provide teachers with the ability to check on and enhance student learning. Where did that idea come from? Many of the questions that a teacher poses during the course of a day's teaching are couched in a common classroom discourse pattern know as Initiate-Respond-Evaluate (Cazden, 1988). Techniques such as creating probing questions unique to the customer’s situation can really improve an advisor’s ability to problem-solve, but this does take time. Planning for disrupted learning: Go long; provide the tools. Probing questions are usually a series of questions that dig deeper and provide a fuller picture. To learn more, review the lesson Probing Questions: Types & Examples, which will help you: Determine what a probing question is Compare and contrast probing questions and clarifying questions Principles of Instruction, Barak Rosenshine: The Hidden Lives of Learners, Graham Nuthall, NZCER Press, 2007. Consider these questions from a Consultancy, during which a teacher presented a dilemma about increasing students’ commitment to quality work: In an I-R-E questioning cycle, the teacher asks a question, elicits a response, evaluates the relative quality of the answer, and moves on to the next cycle. Here are some examples of probing questions: ‘What proof do you have that Susan stole the money?’ ‘What exactly do you mean by value-added?’ It took me a term to get used to this method but this method revolutionised my classroom when I adopted it, and made teaching and learning much more fun. This skill in particular highlights components of indirect instruction, which is one of many styles of teaching. Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. Using both clarifying and probing questions facilitates effective deliberation. Probing Questions: First and foremost, let’s discuss probing questions. Visit http://bit.ly/2JRfWjh. Some of this comes with deeper knowledge of the curriculum and common misconceptions; some of it comes from experience and practice. Socratic Questioning: Socrates' method of questioning in order to elicit learning. Two must-read frameworks for CPD: Leverage Leadership + Practice with Purpose. Visit http://bit.ly/2JRfWjhFurther informationPrinciples of Instruction, Barak Rosenshine: http://www.aft.org/sites/default/files/periodicals/Rosenshine.pdfThe Hidden Lives of Learners, Graham Nuthall, NZCER Press, 2007. “Usualise diversity”. Learning: ask open and closed questions, and use probing questioning. ( Log Out /  This video case study shows the difference between funneling and focusing questions in action. The two other types of questions that are commonly mentioned when talking about probing questions are clarifying and recommendation questions. See chapters 9 and 15 in Evidence Based Teaching if you want to use Assertive questioning, or chapter 24 in Teaching Today. So what happens if we made it bigger or smaller? What are Probing Questions? Time for change. Please read them. Towards an anti-racist curriculum: Step 2. 5. Rigour  3.Challenge  4. Teacher's 6. . (2017). Revisiting Dylan Wiliam's Five Brilliant Formative Assessment Strategies. Asking probing, high-quality questions in the classroom Questioning is the cornerstone of great teaching. Which of those things makes the biggest impact? There is not enough detail here. Behaviour Management: A Bill Rogers Top 10. Is that a direct cause of the effect or is it just a coincidence, a correlation? Here is a typical questioning pattern: Probing Questions: Specific questions for finding detail. Rhetorical Questions: Questions without answers. Here we have identified four types of questions you might ask based on your goals for the conversation, the teacher’s learning goals, and the specific observation at hand: identification, analysis, comparison, and brainstorming. Having got the students talking the teacher can use probing questions to bring out more detail. On my recent learning walks and in recent formal observations, I’ve been struck by a simple thought: When you walk into a lesson where the teacher is talking and you immediately think, ‘Yes, this is a great lesson’, what is happening? While the same questions are asked of students, the use of probing questions will vary according to the student’s response. An effective probing question helps to get a person to talk about their personal opinions and feelings, and promotes critical thinking. ( Log Out /  Probing is a form of questioning that encourages students to extend their verbal answers in the classroom. Javed has to think harder, gets more practice with recalling what he knows and is supported in making connections he may not yet have made. There are simply too many students, and too much content to cover, so they cut to the chase. But, to return to my point at the start… the ideas here need to be practiced, assimilated and absorbed so that they become habits, part of the routine, part of the organic, spontaneous exchange within the lesson… the spirit of the lesson. It is helpful for the teacher to model using these types of questions since students may not have experience with them. ( Log Out /  It is all the more important for all teacher as questioning stimulates the thinking of the students and gets the concepts clarified and hence has significant contribution to teaching and learning for all subjects. Given those types of questions, let’s look at some specific questions … two questions the teacher has already created. Here are the five groups of probing question techniques for you to use in your next interaction.. While the same questions are asked of students, the use of probing questions will vary according to the student’s response. They might have got the gist but not picked up on a crucial step.Asking students to clarify their understanding of a task, some practical work or even the homework. For example they: Give immediate feedback on pupils’ understanding, which can then be used by the teacher to modify the teaching. …. The goal is to develop the confidence and ability to trust yourself to do this. Sustaining probing dialogue with any number of students that engages them all is the hallmark of a great teacher…. Until you hear what students say, you can’t plan exactly what to ask. It requires asking multiple students, deliberately selected, to share their understanding with you. Agility 8. Very commonly a teacher will take an answer from one student and assume that this represents the level of understanding in the room. Thinking about questioning styles and techniques ahead of time allows you to begin, sustain and resolve a discussion-based activity. probing questions also make students aware of their own responses and make students answer in the way they think the teacher expects an answer (Smith & Stein, 2011). This works well for multiple situations: The key is to try to ask for feedback – to check for understanding – from several students, using other strategies like “cold calling”, where any student could be asked to answer if selected, to ensure that nobody opts out. A response may redirect students when an incorrect answer is given or students misinterpret the question. TIP Understanding questioning techniques not just helps you as the one who’s asking the questions but also as a respondent to know where the conversation is heading and how you can manage it better. They might have got the gist but not picked up on a crucial step. PROBING QUESTIONING SKILL Dr. Shanti Tejwani Principal, Shri Vaishnav College of Teachers Training , Indore 2. However, it is important to note that not all questions are created equal. Probing As I suggest at the start of the article, great probing questioning is, for me, the hallmark of great teaching. Big idea: Teaching kids to ask smart questions on their own. Exploring Barak Rosenshine's seminal Principles of Instruction: Why it is THE must-read for all teachers. CLARIFYING QUESTIONS are simple questions of fact. Using both clarifying and probing questions facilitates effective deliberation. Thank you for sharing. Tom Sherrington looks at the key elements to good, probing questioning. Probing questioning skill 1. where mistakes may arise and have probing questions or examples ready to shape learning . Asking students to clarify their understanding of a task, some practical work or even the homework. Teachers putting ed-research into practice. Eliciting feedback from your students is just as important as any feedback you give to them and there are lots of effective questioning strategies that enable you to do this. http://huntingenglish.wordpress.com/2012/11/10/questioning-top-ten-strategies/, http://sayersjohn.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/questioning.html, Great Teaching: The Power of Questioning – Teaching & Learning @ CCHS. Change ). As I suggest at the start of the article, great probing questioning is, for me, the hallmark of great teaching. On any day I spend observing lessons, where teaching isn’t perhaps as effective as it could be, it’s common to find a teacher simply asking questions into the room – “anyone know the answer?” – then only inviting those with hands up to respond. Use “think-alouds” to model for students how to think through the questions. Then, the probing continues as the teacher circulates or when the class is brought back. You, meanwhile, get a much clearer idea of how your teaching of the concepts has taken shape in his memory. “Michael, tell us what the task is and how we will know when we’ve completed it.” If Michael, and then Jodie or Evan, can’t give a good answer, it will pay to re-explain. De Bono's Six Thinking Hats encourages students to look at a topic, problem or idea from more than one perspective, with each hat representing a different kind of thinking, encouraging new questions. A teacher’s response to students’ answers is just as important as the question asked. 3. The goal is to develop the confidence and ability to trust yourself to do this. Further reading. Tag Questions: Some questions encourage agreement, don't they? Not sure if that’s quite right… have another go… is that what you meant? Here’s what they might be saying – you can fill in Javed’s responses for yourself: This process makes Javed explore his understanding and recall of what he has learned in far greater depth than questioning where the teacher is satisfied with short, one-off responses – as is common where teaching is less effective than it might be. Probing questions are ideal when trying to get information out of evasive people. This is THE Key. Probing questions are designed to encourage deep thought about a specific topic. Asking probing questions also make students aware of their own responses and make students answer in the way they think the teacher expects an answer (Smith & Stein, 2011). Javed, why do you think the author uses that technique? Essentially, you see every questioning interaction with a student as a short dialogue; an exchange of three, four or five questions that seeks to deepen or widen their response instead of simply moving onto another student after hearing a simple or partial response. At a whole-class level, the dialogue is conducted with some energy and passion, moving from student to student, bringing the students from the back and the corners into the fray. Explaining  7. If one student gives a good answer, you then check in with someone else to see if they can too; and then yet another student. 973-987. Great Lessons 1: Probing Questions. The Learning Rainforest: Great teaching in real classrooms is published by John Catt Educational and costs £16. Clarifying questions are for the participants, and should not go beyond the boundaries of the presenter’s dilemma. .By increasing the wait-time, you buy Flexibility for yourself an opportunity to hear and to Increases think. Leading and funnel questions. Series of questions which require students to go beyond the first response. Is there another explanation? Two must-read frameworks for CPD: Leverage Leadership + Practice with Purpose. Bloom's Taxonomy of Learning, Teaching and Assessing organises questions into 6 categories according to whether they involve knowledge, comprehension, analysis, application, synthesis or evaluation. If you do this in an affirmative way "Tell me what you like best about working here" … Types of Questions Within the context of open-ended mathematical tasks, it is useful to group questions into four main categories (Badham, 1994). What would you say instead? The more you do it, the better you get at it. 1. Questions Effectively. Addison Wesley, 1956 Gabrielatos, C. A Question of Function: Teacher Questions in the EFL Classroom. Even if you have already just gone over it, it is powerful to see if students understood what you meant. Tom Sherrington looks at the key elements to good, probing questioning When I first started writing my Teacherhead blog, a few years ago, I wanted to explore the idea of what “great teaching” might look like. Any thoughts anyone? Many Primary teachers have already developed considerable skill in good questioning … Number one on the list was “probing” – the art of skilful, probing questioning. 7, pp. But, in truth, it is not much good just asking one student; their one response doesn’t tell you anything about what anyone else might be thinking. Ask probing questions that require students to explain, elaborate or clarify their thinking. select appropriate types of questions for particular teaching situations design a sequence of questions to deepen learning on a particular topic ... Probing. Probing questions. Too often this leads teachers into thinking of idealised lessons than can only be turned out in special circumstances or that Outstanding lessons require us to devise an elaborate box of tricks to show off with. A good probing question is worded in such a way to encourage individuals to provide details in their answers. Until you hear what students say, you can’t plan exactly what to ask.
2020 probing questions in teaching