It’s the start of a new school year. As a parent, you want to give your child every chance to succeed. But what’s the best way for you to help? How can you work with teachers and other school staff—who, let’s face it, see more of your child than you do—to make sure your favorite student is getting what they need?
FORDHAM magazine checked in with some alumni of the University’s Graduate School of Education—professionals who work with students ranging in age from preschool to high school—to ask them for some guidance. Here’s what they had to say.
Dr. Molly Ness and Jean Humphries (PhD in Language & Literacy Education) published “Beyond Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How: Preparing Students to Generate Questions in the Age of Common Core Standards” in the most recent issue of the Journal of Research in Childhood Education.
Using a case study design, our research explored question generation as a reading comprehension strategy, focusing on the types of questions 4th- and 5th-grade students posed before, during, and after reading narrative text. The authors aimed to determine whether their participants are ready to pose the higher-level questions expected of them by the U.S. Common Core State Standards (2010).
The results indicated that students asked mainly memory-based and convergent thinking questions, with far fewer divergent thinking and evaluative thinking questions.
Instructional implications for classroom teachers include teacher modeling and demonstration of how to ask divergent and evaluative thinking questions through explicit instruction, mentorship, and more teacher use of language related to deeper thinking comprehension questions. These findings are explained in connection to the Common Core State Standards.
Dr. Ness is also the author of the forthcoming The Question is the Answer: Supporting Student-Generated Queries in Elementary Classrooms from Rowman & Littlefield.