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Questions for teachers

Question # 1 What questions can you ask students?

The engine of good education is

fantastic questioning., minute 21.

Ask children questions that you can't answer yourself. Stay curious as you learn what children find out. Teaching means to model curiosity.

Examples of questions 1. What was the most important thing you learned from what you just did? 2. Can you tell me more about this, please? 3. What do you think about x? Why do you think so? 4. What would you do differently to learn more / better? 5. What do you want to change about your education? 6. What do you wish I would ask you so that I can be a good teacher for you? 7. What do you love to do? 8. Describe a moment when you felt really engaged. Why do you think that moment was such a positive one for you? What is a great teacher., minute 28.

Question # 2 How do you listen to students?

Teaching is a lot about

listening. Michael Sandel, minute 25.

Do you lead with your mouth – or with your ears?,-Say,-and-Do.aspx

In a classroom setting, what would happen if we reduced teacher talk by 50%?

Question # 3 How do you use social media?

Dean Shareski

Teachers who blog are the best teachers.


To find out how to blog with 6 year olds, have a look at this posting:

Question # 4 How do you connect with students?

Connect with individual students. Then the individual students will connect with the topic to be learned., minute 10.

For students to excel, teachers must learn about them and connect with each child.

This is not just about finding out how they learn, but it is finding out who they are. It is essential that we get to know our students, learn their passions, and help them find out how we can engage them in their own learning.

Students are likely to be most motivated to buy the product - achieve success and learn responsibility - when they feel connected, competent, and in control.

If we are not connecting with our students in a meaningful and effective way, we cannot be surprised that they do not hear, see, or understand what they need to.

Question # 5 How do you give students freedom to choose things themselves?

Help students to choose themselves  what they learn,  when they learn,  how fast they learn,  where they learn.

Personalized learning is self-initiated / self-driven. Examples of what the student does  He / she identifies topics to learn.  He / she creates.  He / she publishes.  He / she connects with people to learn from / with.  He / she makes self assessment.

Giving students choices - about their homework, assignments, how they're grouped, and so on leads to higher levels of student engagement and achievement.,-Say,-and-Do.aspx

Encourage students to write to anyone they want to write to, for example to friends / other students, parents, grandparents, and/or teachers.

Encourage students to write a letter to themselves dated at the end of the school year. In the letter, each student writes: I got an A in this course because:      

Question # 6 How do you inspire students?

Teachers will still be there to motivate and


Offer objective advice.

Provide an abundant supply of interesting and useful materials and resources.

Sharing information and connecting with others - whether we know them personally or not - has proven to be a powerful tool in education.

Question # 7 How can you help students give feedback to themselves?, minute 12.

3 questions that drive feedback students give themselves: 1. Where do I want to go? 2. Where am I now? 3. What do I do now to get to where I want to go?

Adapted from

Communicate with individual students about the difference between 1. the progress they make. 2. the goals they set.

Question # 8 How can you help students give feedback to each other?

Embed mechanisms for students to provide feedback to one another.

Peer tutoring helps students, who act as tutors, to confirm and deepen their understanding of a particular topic. Peer tutoring also enables struggling students to get help when the teacher is unavailable.

Grades cause an emotional reaction - either positive or negative. Feedback causes you to think and engage, which is reflective learning. Dylan William

Students also need to be given opportunities to provide feedback to the teacher so that she can adjust the learning process, materials, and instruction accordingly.

All great teaching boils down to a 4-step, cyclical process. 1. Understanding what students need to learn. 2. Sharing this information in a manner that students can take in. 3. Practice. Giving students the chance to engage in content and master their new skills. 4. Giving feedback.

Question # 9 How can you praise students for their effort?

Praising effort helps build resilience and determination, while praising talent and ability results in risk-aversion and heightened sensitivity to setbacks.

Study shows that students who were given daily feedback and worked with a tutor who personalized every aspect of their instruction performed better than 98% of students taught in the traditional fashion.

5 things you can say to praise effort 1. I like the way you tried different ways of finding solutions to that problem. 2. I admire how you concentrated as you did the work you did. 3. I was impressed about the time and energy you invested to better understand this issue. Your improvement shows it. 4. I found you showed great passion as you worked on improving that skill. How do you feel about how you worked? 5. Everybody learns in a different way. Let's keep trying to find out which learning strategy works well for you. Page 176.

Question # 10 How good are you at trying new things out?

The purpose of the designer is to create spaces for learning, whether they are in person, on paper or online.

In improvisation, one has some idea - perhaps a theme, perhaps an outline of a musical idea - and works with that, making changes as one goes along.

Question # 11 How will you continue to learn?

Educators have always been collectors, from the days when they would bring stacks of old magazines into class to the modern era as they share links, resources, new faces and new names.

Taking time for professional development, personal renewal and reflection is important to creating passionate learners.

Great teachers acknowledge that teaching is a learning experience – no matter how experienced they are., minute 6.

Question # 12 How self aware are you?

Find out who you are.

What is a great teacher., minute 32.

Profile for Frank Calberg

What do great teachers do?  

14 questions about what great teachers do. Research included.

What do great teachers do?  

14 questions about what great teachers do. Research included.