To understand how inquiry-based learning is beneficial to students, it’s important to have a clear idea of what it means. Put simply, inquiry-based learning is an approach that emphasizes the student’s role in the learning process. Instead of the teacher telling the students what they need to know, students are encouraged to explore the material, share ideas, and ask questions. There are several different approaches to this kind of learning which include small group discussion, guided learning, and individual exploration. The objective is to get students to learn by doing as opposed to memorization which results in limited retention.
Students will build the foundations of incredibly important skills that will help them in the future through inquiry-based learning. As they explore certain topics, students will absorb communication and critical thinking skills. These cognitive skills not only help students understand the particular concept they’re working on, but it also helps them improve comprehension in almost every subject and their daily lives. Skills such as these are also very important for the future because both communication and critical thinking will help with solving problems and collaborating with others.
One of the advantages of inquiry-based learning is that it actively engages students so they aren’t just hearing or writing what they’re being taught. They have the opportunity to explore a topic in-depth and learn from firsthand experience if possible. This allows students to better understand and recall the material they’re learning because they’re able to make their own connections. It’s been proven that we retain 75% of what we do compared to 5% of what we hear and 10% of what we see.
Style of Learning
Another way that inquiry-based learning is beneficial is that it allows students to take ownership of their learning since they will explore topics on their own. This will allow them to process the material in a way that works best for them rather than relying on the single way that the teacher explains it. As a result, they will be more inclined to learn the information because it will be their responsibility. They will also take initiative by making their own connections and drawing their own conclusions. By pursuing a way of learning that is comfortable to them, the students will have a much greater chance of actually wanting to learn the information.
Creating a Love of Learning
When students have the opportunity to approach learning through the inquiry-based method, it allows them to connect with the information on a deeper level. This helps students gain an understanding of the material they’re learning. Inquiry-based learning is also designed to teach students how to develop a passion for learning and exploration. Since they’re the ones personally processing the information, they will be more likely to understand what they’re learning, appreciate the knowledge they’re gaining, and understand the value of what they learn in school.
In conclusion, inquiry-based learning has various benefits that can truly help middle school students understand concepts and what they’re learning better. Additionally, it will lay the groundwork for their future. It helps them to develop important skills and foster engagement.. It’s also an approach to learning that will be incredibly useful when these students go off to high school and college where they will play more of an active role in their education. Overall, it’s highly beneficial for middle schoolers and will help them reach their full potential as learners.
Written by Anumita Basani
October 25, 2021