Student groups visit our National Parks each year, engaging with park rangers, working on junior ranger books, visiting museums, and hiking on trails. Whenever new activities, education programs, and exhibits are created we need to consider how to nurture and place a higher priority on students’ questions. Finding new methods to foster and support student (and visitor) generated questions is essential. Read the article, “Our Students’ Questions Should be a Top Priority” to learn what educator Molly Ness has to say about the subject.
In the Article…
Molly Ness describes the necessity to support, answer, and nurture continual student created questions. “Praise the process of questioning […] student-generated questions might become the driving force of classroom instruction”. Ness offers several examples of how to support student questions including the use of picture walks to generate questions and creating a culture of questioning. Both strategies could be useful in our parks across the country and they could be modified to meet the needs and educational goals of a particular park.
After reading the article, reflect and select three of the strategies mentioned and create a list of how each could be used in your particular park. Write these down and share them with a colleague. Have an open discussion about them, taking these ideas one step further. Also, check out this TED Talk video about stimulating curiosity for children to use in your reflection.
Ness, Molly. “Our Students’ Questions Should be a Top Priority”. MiddleWeb, 22 May 2018.