How do I get questions?


Phew! I asked for one good question, and what you would have to know to answer it. I got, “Why would someone make that?” ,”Where is this?” Very, very few kids were able to come up with ideas for “how to figure out the answer” to their own questions. You have to go there, or ask the guy who made it. Since you can’t, you may as well give up.

So, next week, I think I’ll give a picture, ask 3 or 4 questions, and then they can pick a question and try and come up with what they might need to know to answer it. Clearly, students are not interested in questions they might be able to figure out. They are interested in, “Who is this guy sitting on the bench?” but only to google it and move on.

Kids did actually spend time googling the (Pearl River) bridge, as “bridge shaped like an 8.” They were proud of finding it, so I guess that’s something.  This whole question thing is hard. I am not sure what to do with people who don’t ever ask questions that they cannot figure out the answer to. Here we are, asking questions like mad. Is this a microcosm of teachers, or is this the difference between adults and children (who feel they have no control), or between people who make a living wage and those who live in severe poverty (where there are no choices)?

Hey, we’re having a hard time just trying to get kids to figure out that they need the average of a set of  numbers, without using the word “average.”

  And, for those who care, Dan Meyers referencing your blog gives sends people to read it (for my reference, that’s the sudden huge spike in reader stats). For sure I blame Sam Shah (again), who told me that I could write as if nobody would read it.


2 responses »

  1. The same thing happened to me. I had a post that Dan Meyers quoted and talked about in his post and all of a sudden I noticed the top bar chart on WordPress was going crazy. Maybe I’ll post my pic too cause it’s crazy. How many followers must he have for hundreds to follow that link to my blog? Then as a week has gone by it’s settled back to the same as before. But still that post gets the most views.

  2. I put this up because we’re working on histograms/bar charts in my classroom. What do they mean? What can it tell us? In this case, something sure happened! I was so shocked to see my name on his site.

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