Questions for answers

Questions for Answers.

I’ve been writing a new conference on effective teacher-pupil interactions in the classroom and wanted to share one concrete technique on my Blog: Questions for Answers.

The idea is a simple one and it’s interesting because it inverts the typical transactional norm of the Primary classroom. Instead of asking pupils to answer questions we ask them to generate questions! It’s a technique I’ve regularly seen used in maths sessions (The number is 50. What are the questions?) but I’ve rarely seen it used across the curriculum.

Taking history as an example, a lesson could begin with the following written on a Whiteboard:

Here are today’s answers:

Pyramid
Nile
Pharaoh
Shadoof
Old Kingdom

What are the answers?

Groups of pupils are given selections of books on the subject (In this instance ‘Ancient Egypt’) and, hey presto, we have a superb activity for assessing (by stealth) pupils’ information retrieval skills. Coincidentally it raises the cognitive bar!

A simple idea but a fantastic way of differentiating a session in any area of the curriculum! I’d be very keen to hear from teachers using this technique or others of a similar ilk!

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