A great question is a springboard into a fascinating discussion. Phrase it the right way and students will start thinking. Then they'll start talking. Then you won't be able to get them to stop!
Great questions can make the difference between a good learning activity and a great one.
It can also make the difference between classroom technology that's just so-so and game-changing tech use.
Want to get students talking? In this post, you'll see some really juicy questions shared by educators on Twitter that they use with their students.
Here are some ideas for creating juicy questions of your own:
- Student interests: Is there an app they're excited about? A song? A YouTuber? Can you phrase the question through that?
- Audio, images, and video: Is there an audio clip you can play for students? A provocative image? A short video that will spark discussion?
- Would you rather: Can students choose between two options -- especially if it's a difficult decision?
- Summarize: Can they boil down an idea into one sentence? One word?
- Lists: Can students formulate a list (top 3, top 5, top 10) based on certain criteria? Can they justify what made the list -- and what didn't?
- Fantasize: What could the world look like? What could class look like? What could the material you're studying look like?
- Life's mysteries: What's a question that doesn't have a clear answer that could be argued either way?
1. What magical creature would make the world a better place if it existed?
Which magical creature would make the world a better place if it existed?— Mr. Harris (@TheMrHarrisJ) October 16, 2020
4. If you had to give up one of your five senses, which one and why?
Today we talked about if you had to give up one of your five senses, which one and why? Great discussions in all classes.— Julie (@Julie54461) October 16, 2020
6. Is a hotdog a sandwich?
A1: Is a hotdog a sandwich? I couldn't get them to STOP talking! Pineapple on pizza. Yes or no? is another one that gets strong reactions.— Lisa McLeod (@lisakmcleod) October 16, 2020
7. Are you doing what it takes to get what you want in life? Why or why not?
Are you doing what it takes to get what you want in life? Why or why not?— Canji Rhodes (@canji_w) October 19, 2020
8. Who REALLY is the strongest avenger?
10. The Zombie apocalypse has started... your two best friends are being chased. Who do you save?
12. Whose voice is missing from this (book, article, video, story, image...)?
A1: Here's my juicy question to get students talking and thinking 🗣 "Who's voice is missing from this .... book, article, video, story, image, textbook, news report, issue, event, lecture, conversation, audience .... etc. etc?" #ditchbook @DitchThatTxtbk https://t.co/wcFV5VXPdm— Julie Millan (@jsm2272) October 16, 2020
16. What type of candy is better? Sweet or salty?
A1 Which type of candy is better? Sweet or salty? Most people have an opinion and something as contentious as which candy is best will 100% break the ice.— Garrett James (@Garrett_James_) October 16, 2020
18. How could you use (Instagram, Twitter, Google Slides, paint, Play-doh, Lego, Among Us...) to show your learning?
20. Can you explain a boring fact about yourself in an interesting way?
I aske students to describe a boring fact about themselves in an interesting way. “I can blink bi-hemispherically” was one of the fun responses.— Mr. Carr on the Web (@MrCarrOnTheWeb) October 16, 2020