Inquiry EDUC 450 | EDUC 451 | EDUC 452

These courses are offered to all Elementary & Middle Years and Secondary teacher candidates.

EDUC 450 – Inquiry Seminar I

Inquiry Seminar I is designed to engender:

  • an understanding of teaching as a moral and intellectual activity requiring inquiry, judgement and engagement with multiple others—students, parents, colleagues, scholarly community.
  • an appreciation of the importance of research in understanding curriculum, teaching and learning.
  • a desire to engage in one’s own educational inquiries—to become students of teaching.

EDUC 451 – Inquiry Seminar II

Inquiry Seminar II is designed to provide opportunities to

  • engage in teacher inquiry around a theme, a particular curriculum emphasis or an educational issue of one’s choosing.
  • demonstrate understandings acquired during course work and develop deeper understandings of a particular area of educational study.
  • begin to make links between one’s inquiry topic and one’s practice as a beginning teacher.


Jane Cho (BEd, 2016) on Inquiry

jane-cho-lr“I am looking forward to discovering more about how we teachers can enhance and foster intercultural understanding in multicultural classrooms, which is vital to a 21st century globalized world. Prior to immigrating to Canada at age of 10, I grew up living in England, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Seoul going to international schools and public school in Seoul. As a third culture Korean-Canadian kid, I always found people of diverse cultural/linguistic/historical background fascinating, and understanding their stories were impactful to my personal identity, growth and development. I hope to see our next generation Canadians and other global citizens to learn more about one other and develop the insights, knowledge, skills and attitudes that will bridge the gaps between local and global communities.

As I was going through the books in this preliminary stage (in the photo), it amazed and overwhelmed me at the same time how much information is out there and all the possible directions my inquiry topic could branch off to many different ways. My Inquiry topic is: “Building Global Competence: What strategies can social studies teachers best engage students in intercultural/cross-cultural understandings in Canadian multicultural classrooms?”

 

EDUC 452 – Inquiry Seminar III

Inquiry Seminar III is designed to provide opportunities to reflect upon and represent one’s learning experiences (in the teacher education program) in light of a critical engagement with what it means to be a professional and to be engaged in a profession. This includes revisiting one’s inquiry question/s in a post-practicum and pre-career space: where is the inquiry process now? has the question shifted? what questions have emerged?

The sharing of this reflective process allows one to demonstrate:

  • a growing awareness of commitments and responsibilities to the profession, self and others
  • a developing ability to engage thoughtfully in practice, to raise critical questions and wonder ‘out loud’ about an individual and collective professional future.

 

Teacher Candidate Perspectives

What Inquiry Means To Me | Dominique Moore (BEd, 2015)

Initially I thought inquiry was a ‘thing’; a question, an e-portfolio, a blog, a paper, or some sort of end product that displayed a question I wondered about. What I have come to learn about inquiry is that it is a mindset and process where the end product can be unknown and has no limits. During my inquiry process, I learned that it’s okay for teachers to be in that uncomfortable dissonance of the unknown. In fact inquiry is driven by the curiosity teachers have about the unknown (The Mentor, 2010).

Evolution of My Inquiry

My journey in inquiry has had a significant impact on my teaching practice. But the genesis of the inquiry question did not come easily. It took days to come up with the initial question, then weeks to build and refine the question. It was necessary to take the time to determine the true purpose of my inquiry in order for it to become meaningful. So what is my inquiry all about?

I have come to learn that there are some elementary school teachers who are not physical education (PE) specialists and have expressed their lack of confidence and discomfort in teaching PE. So I thought to myself, how can I practically support and collaborate with elementary school teachers to improve pedagogical practice and improve the PE experience for elementary school age learners?

How can secondary Physical Education (PE) specialists collaborate with and support elementary school teachers to improve pedagogical practice and improve the PE experience for elementary school age learners?

I believe that it is crucial to lay down a strong foundation of fundamental movement skills in kindergarten to grade 7 and present the concepts of active living, movement, safety, fair play and leadership to these learners using fun and engaging pedagogy early on. We only have one first impression. If we can facilitate quality learning experiences for elementary school students early on, we are paving a smoother pathway between elementary school physical education and secondary school physical education programs.

So What, Now What?

As I near completion of the UBC BEd program, I am currently working on a presentation package proposal I will present to my hometown in the Richmond school district. Essentially, my goal is to continue the inquiry process and live out my inquiry project. I am passionate about seeing where this road and journey will lead.

“…cultivating a spirit of inquiry and the capacity for inquiry, we find that inquiry not only helps in subject learning but also in lifelong learning – both for ourselves and our students” (The Mentor, 2010).

 

Inquiry Process

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Kelly Catron (BEd, 2017) on Developing an Inquiry Question

As an older TC with some life experience behind me, I find myself drawn, more than ever, to the concept of resiliency. Over the years, I have watched as my two sons, both of whom learn differently than most, have persevered through their struggles with purposefulness and grit. I appreciate and understand the complexities of these struggles, as I am a different learner myself. Having been placed in a diverse 5/6/7 classroom with various emotional, learning, and language needs, I am aware, on a deep, personal level, how important it is to teach and nurture resiliency in my students. But how will I do this? What will it look like?

These curiosities, combined with my commitment to instilling truth, reconciliation, and decolonization in my classroom, have led me to the following inquiry question: How can I promote, foster, and model resiliency to my students using SEL and the First Peoples’ Principles of Learning?

 

Incorporating Inquiry Questions into Practicum:

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