Research has shown that teachers ask around 300 – 400 questions per day. This can be as much as 120 questions per hour depending on the type of lesson and the subject matter being taught (Vogler 2005). However, it has been suggested that many of these questions known as “call-out” questions (Croom and Stair 2005) are low level cognitive questions which only require pupils to recall information or knowledge (Vogler 2005). As a result, children are not being given the opportunity to perform higher order thinking as often as they should be.
It has been widely documented that varying the types of questions asked of pupils is an important strategy that helps support the development of thinking and learning. It has been suggested that asking children higher order questions can help them to become self-directed thinkers (Strasser and Mufson 2015).
The benefits of asking higher order questions do not stop with pupils. Using effective questioning can help teachers assess students academic progress (Croom and Stair 2005). Assessment is for learning is a vital part of good quality teaching and learning. Appropriate questioning is a large part of AifL and as a practitioner I wanted to gain a deeper insight into effective questioning to challenge and support the children in my class. I chose Bloom’s Taxonomy questioning as I could adapt the questions to suit the age and stage of the children in my class and the lesson content that was being taught. Bloom’s Taxonomy is also progressive moving from lower order thinking to higher order thinking. This allowed me the opportunity to assess the effectiveness of my questioning against the progression of the children through the levels of thinking.
The aim of this practitioner enquiry is to find out what impact Bloom’s Taxonomy has on the teaching and learning within an infant classroom when it is used to inform teacher questioning.