Insights By Inquiry

Read regular posts by Inquiry By Design team members.  In addition to exploring Inquiry By Design’s unique perspective on literacy, teaching, standards, and assessment, you’ll find insights into the use of our curriculum, professional development, workshops, and company culture.

Support for English Learners

By Sarah Noble

I am in the midst of grading my 8th graders’ first interpretive paper of the school year. I am pleasantly surprised by what I see in the first few papers. My students are thinking deeply and engaging in the text based on the evidence they pull from the story. I breathe a sigh of relief, and keep slogging through the remaining 63 essays. The next essay is by “Johnny,” a low-intermediate English learner. He just moved here from […]

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TOP FIVE: Productive Student Discussion Strategies

If you read our recent two-part blog series about classroom discussions (What If No One Talks – Part 1 and Part 2) you might be in search of more strategies for apprenticing students to productive discussions in your classroom. We polled our fabulous team of master Inquiry By Design teachers and here are some of their favorites.

 

1. THINK-PAIR-SHARE

Asking students to write and discuss ideas with a partner before sharing with the larger group gives students more time to compose their […]

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English Learners and Dependent Readers: An Unexpected Advantage (Part 2)

We are always concerned for our struggling learners. Of course we are. So when a teacher first encounters the crazy-complex texts in an Inquiry By Design unit, that teacher may be a little skeptical, or hesitant, or even terrified.

Well, take a deep breath because there are several research-based reasons why those might be the very students to excel with challenging texts and an inquiry based pedagogy. (If you missed reasons 1-3, go here.)

I went through school a long time ago, […]

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English Learners and Dependent Readers: An Unexpected Advantage (Part 1)

“My high kids will be fine. But I can’t imagine what my ELLs and my SPED kids are going to do with this.”

We hear this consistently from teachers all around the country during Inquiry By Design’s curriculum institutes. Based on the increased level of complexity in the texts and considerable rigor of the accompanying tasks in our units of study, it’s a valid concern—but one rarely borne out in practice.

There are several reasons why English language learners and SPED students […]

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TOP FIVE: Education Blogs

Who do we follow? Here are our favorite education-related blogs. Great stuff!

1. Shanahan on Literacy.
Focused solely on literacy, Shanahan’s blog emphasizes research (including his own) related to reading-writing relationships, reading assessment, and improving reading achievement. It is a rare day when we aren’t challenged and enlightened by his posts.

2. Chalkbeat.
This a great source for broader education-related news from around the country.

3. Mindshift.
Focusing on slightly edgier, more fringe topics within the educational technology field, MindShift opens our eyes to totally new […]

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