Instruction and enquiry both get learning moving

It is often assumed that a ‘knowledge-rich’ curriculum requires direct instruction techniques. But science teacher Alex Black believes that schools must also use ‘epistemic enquiry’ to help young people grasp complex ideas and make connections between them

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Much of the debate surrounding a knowledge-rich curriculum has been premised on the claim that it implies the need for a direct instruction model of learning (or guided instruction as Paul Kirschner has termed it – see bit.ly/DirectInstruct).

I do not want to make the alternative claim that a project-based/enquiry-led teaching model is the preferred pedagogical foundation for a knowledge-rich curriculum. But I would like to explore the concept of “epistemic enquiry” and its fruitfulness in clarifying what “knowledge-rich” actually means – and how such a curriculum might best be delivered.

I ...

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