Elaine Lloyd

Primary Teacher

St. Edward's Primary

  • Bloom's Taxonomy

What happens when Bloom’s Taxonomy is used to construct Higher Order Thinking activities?


The focus of this investigation was chosen as developing higher order thinking skills in numeracy and literacy is part of both the school improvement plan and the council’s wider initiatives to close the attainment gap. The scope of the project was narrowed by examining what happened when Higher Order Thinking (HOT) activities were applied to literacy lessons. As a probationer teacher, I was keen to broaden my knowledge of Bloom’s Taxonomy by investigating what happened when higher order thinking activities were applied in the classroom.

Effective questioning is a key component of formative assessment. Clarke (2008: 74-78) describes methods for improving teacher questioning and includes the use of Blooms Taxonomy to generate more challenging questions rather than solely recall questions. Blooms Taxonomy has six classifications which start with lower orders skills of remembering and understanding and move towards higher order skills of applying, analysing, evaluating and creating. Building the Curriculum 4 (2009) highlighted the need to develop thinking skills in all areas of learning.


The aim of this enquiry is to develop higher order thinking skills in literacy by introducing HOT activities. As well as promoting thinking skills via HOT questions, this technique will help to develop the pupils’ understanding of their text and promote literacy skills within the classroom.

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