Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Bloom's Taxonomy and Inquiry

Benjamin Bloom’s taxonomy, updated in 2001, can help you identify and categorize good questions to guide student learning. Within the taxonomy, there are six cognitive levels, and these move from lower- to higher-order thinking. The six levels are remembering (knowledge), understanding (comprehension), applying, analyzing, evaluating, and creating (synthesizing). These six levels provide opportunities for teachers to incorporate inquiry learning into their lessons beyond the lower cognitive-level thinking activities, such as knowledge and comprehension that are centered on recitation and memorization. In order to develop critical thinking and good inquiry activities, you want to ask questions that provide students with opportunities to apply, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate important concepts and themes within the activity. This deeper investigation and exploration of topics allows your students to focus on differentiating and questioning different points of view and then synthesize the information in order to debate an issue or build a model.

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