The idea of adding inquiry to our classrooms is exciting for teachers. It offers us a chance to get to know our student’s better, to understand their passions, and it provides student agency. Inquiry makes teaching electric again. But there are best practices and foundational skills needed to ensure that inquiry is implemented effectively. That is where Trevor Mackenzie’s new book Inquiry Mindset comes in. His expertise, along with that of Kindergarten teacher, Rebecca Bathurst-Hunt creates a guided pathway for us as teachers to learn, to explore, and to implement inquiry into our classrooms.
When I read Trevor’s first book, Dive into Inquiry: Amplify Learning and Empower Student Voice, I realized the power of inquiry in the classroom. I showcased this book in trainings, online workshops, and in lessons in teacher’s classrooms. I believed inquiry would transform their classrooms into communities where students learn because they are curious. In an inquiry community, students are given the freedom to explore, examine, and question.
When I heard that there would be another book that offered even more examples, more experiences, and more information about how to best implement inquiry into our classrooms I was thrilled and could not wait to learn more about the inquiry process. I was fortunate enough to be able to read a draft of the new book. In Inquiry Mindset Trevor and Rebecca help explain how to scaffold inquiry and they offer resources, ideas, and lessons to foster inquiry in your classroom.
In the book, Inquiry Mindset, I found an incredibly unique and powerful feature nestled at the end of each chapter. Trevor and Rebecca have a section called “#Inquiry Mindset in Action” which calls upon us as readers and learners to put into practice what we have read, and to reflect on how we can best implement what was laid out in the chapter. I found these ‘ calls to action’ ideas to be powerful because they make you pause and put a plan into place before moving on in the book. What they propose will allow you to put into practice what you learned right away.
These ideas also help create a community because Trevor and Rebecca ask you, the reader, to share these ‘calls to action’ to the online community using a common hashtag #InquiryMindset. They are creating a community of teachers who are willing to offer windows into their inquiry-based classrooms. This community will be an incredible resource for those of us who are putting inquiry into action. Teachers are always pushing students to be their best, to do their best, and to dream big. These ‘calls to action’ push teachers to do the same. We are lifelong learners. That is why we are on Twitter, we read books, we blog, and we share ideas and resources with our professional learning communities. The #InquiryMindset community will have an impact on your professional growth, which in turn will have a positive impact on your students.
I am super excited to be a part of this community. When I host my inquiry-based workshops, I will be using Inquiry Mindset as a guide to help explain inquiry and know this book will help teachers build a toolkit with the resources mentioned in the book. But most of all, using the ‘#InquiryMindset in Action’ sections will help make inquiry a reality in our classrooms.