Questions Arising From Classroom Discussion in KF
In phase one, students should have generated questions that could drive inquiry during classroom discussions. In phase two, students should post them onto the Knowledge Forum for further online discussion. This method provides a good linkage between phase one and phase two.
It is a common misconception that a good Knowledge Forum discussion starts with a well-structured question given by the teacher. This kind of discussion can easily result in unidirectional assignment-based writing, with extremely limited interactions among students.
The essence of knowledge building is to allow students to direct their own learning. Therefore, instead of answering teacher’s questions, students are to ask their own questions and try to find out the answers, thereby construct knowledge and understanding through the collaborative efforts of their knowledge-building community.
Specific and content-based questions restrict students’ independent thinking. To facilitate students’ metacognition, broader questions such as ‘What do you know about this topic?’ and ‘What do you want to find out more on this topic?’ are more appropriate.
Questions Arising from Reading Texts
Sometimes students can be inspired through reading of books, newspaper articles, research report, poems or other written materials (used in phase one). Of course, materials of other modes, such as video, movie, comics, sound clips etc. can also be good stimuli.
Teachers may consider doing News Discussion with students regularly (e.g. bi-weekly or monthly). In this approach, different groups of students take turns to find a newspaper article that interested them and identify key questions for discussion based on that article. After that, the group needs to act as the little teachers to present to the whole class their inquiry questions and lead the class discussion. After the lesson, the questions will be posted onto KF for further inquiry.
Questions Arising From a Field Trip
Firsthand experience such as experience in field trips, visits and workshops give students wonderful opportunities to discover and explore authentic problems.