Five tips for asking inspiring Questions of the Day

Are your questions inspiring the children?

Now that the children have settled into our morning routine, it is time to introduce the children to our Question of the Day board. The top goals of our Q and A routine is to inspire action, promote conversation, and build critical thinking and decision-making skills. Here are five tips for how we go about doing that.

Tip 1: Build a Connection

Everyday before school, we take a few minutes to think and talk about what question we want to add to our board. Instead of just tossing out any old question, we think about how we can use the question to connect with a book we are reading or something the children have been focused on during the week. For example, we read the book “The Apple Pie Tree” by Zoe Hall so as a lead in to our book we asked, “Have you ever made an apple pie?”

Tip 2: Inspire Action

An action question inspires the children to do something like jump, hunt for a square, or make a face. An example would be “Can you roar louder than a lion?” or “Do you see any circles in this room?”

Tip 3: Promote Conversation

Conversational questions tap into something the children often have prior experience with so that they can and will want to share that experience with the class. To inspire conversation, the questions have to meaningful to the children. An example would be, “Have you ever been to an apple orchard?” or “Do you have any pets at your house?”

Tip 4: Build Critical Thinking and Decision-Making Skills

Ask questions that will lead the children towards actually stopping to think for a second then make their own decision. For example, a question like, “Do you know what it means to be allergic?” or “Do you think a green light means go?”

Tip 5: Avoid tricky questions

You might be tempted to ask abstract or trick questions at times but if the children can’t understand or connect with the questions, your questions will not actually inspire conversation or action. For example, don’t ask “Do you think a green light means stop?” This may seem easy enough but it can simply confuse the children and cause them to worry about being right or wrong. You want to build the children’s confidence to make a decision and to answer the question so keep it simple.

More to grow on:

Invite your little scientists to play this super fun question game!

Want to learn more great ideas about the Question of the Day? Join us in the Honey Bee Hive and learn all about it!

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Leave your thoughts or questions in the comments below!

By |2018-11-05T14:28:38+00:00October 18th, 2018|

About the Author:

Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. has been working and teaching in the field of early childhood education for over 30 years. Deborah currently owns and teaches in her own part-time, private preschool called The Children’s Studio. Deborah’s deep passion for teaching and working with young children is documented and then graciously shared with millions of readers around the world through her blog and other social networking communities. Deborah believes that young children learn best through play and exploration and embraces this belief in all that she does in her own classroom so that she can effectively and passionately share rewarding, real- life, tried-and-true practices with other teachers, parents, and leaders across the field of early childhood education.

8 Comments

  1. Alma Wesley October 21, 2018 at 12:09 pm - Reply

    Great material. What do you do with parents that want more academics seen?

    • Deborah Stewart October 21, 2018 at 2:37 pm - Reply

      Continuously highlight the value of play and how children are learning all the academics they need through more meaningful context when they learn it through play.

  2. Maria Rogers October 21, 2018 at 12:50 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much Deborah!! Love the idea

  3. Jennifer October 22, 2018 at 12:27 am - Reply

    Love the ask a question idea! I will use it this week and ask them how many people are in their family since I m doing Myself and my family theme. I can also ask them to say their parent’s and siblings names or describe if they are tall etc.
    Thank you for your ideas.

  4. Vishakha Deshpande October 22, 2018 at 1:34 am - Reply

    Tank you Deborah for these ideas. They are useful for our classrooms.

  5. Denise November 4, 2018 at 5:24 pm - Reply

    Just wondering…. do your questions always have a yes/no answer? I am thinking of implementing this after the holidays. Thanks!

    • Deborah Stewart November 5, 2018 at 10:05 am - Reply

      Yes they do so we can make a simple decision then compare, graph, and discuss our answers.

      • Denise November 5, 2018 at 4:38 pm

        Awesome, thanks!

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