I was working with an s3 class today doing a lesson on enquiry skills. For me, enquiry is all about being out in the field and I find it quite dry and also quite difficult to teach in a classroom setting. It's just all words and theory. So, today I wanted to break it down. What does enquiry mean? What are gathering techniques? What are processing techniques?
I thought about using an example based on an infamous stewards enquiry from my days working as a bookmaker, where one jockey stole anothers whip. Being unable to find this, I remembered the fracas in the summer when cyclist Mark Renshaw took, or gave, one for the team so that his sprinter team mate, Mark Cavendish, could gain an advantage.
We talked about what had happened, and some students said he would have been disqualified. I asked on the back of this when, why and how. We were basically exploring the idea that before disqualification, there would have to be very good proof. Although it was obvious for us with hindsight, we agreed that the race stewards would have to consult rules, check video etc before deciding on his fate. This was to help them FIND OUT about the issue. It was agreed that this was a good definition of enquiry. To do this, they GATHERED information in different ways (video being one), but then had to PROCESS this into a meaningful result- in this case, the race result, standings and the withdrawal of the rider from race listings. What's a results list if not a table?
Afterwards, we went on to discuss this in relation to geographical scenarios where students had to suggest how they would 'find out' about the issue, what techniques they would use to 'gather' the information they needed, and we will later discuss how we would use or 'process' it. Not sure how much of a difference it made, but couldn't see how I could tell Mr Howell this in 140 characters on Twitter :-)
Posted via email from Mr O'D's class posterous