Turn natural curiosity into deep, lasting learnings! Inquiry is what drives us all toward new knowledge, but how do we transform children’s natural ability to notice and wonder into the full learning cycle of observing, thinking, and critically questioning? Through this new edition of the bestselling Why Are School Buses Always Yellow? you’ll find simple, yet systematic ways to develop authentic student inquiry that fosters deep learning. This new edition features: • Updates based on the latest research around inquiry-based teaching • Emphasis on turning inquiry into critical thinking, assessing students’ inquiry, and involving families in the inquiry process • Examples for K–8 across subject areas • New emphasis on critical thinking about technologies • New and updated activities, checklists, templates, and implementation tools • Alignment with Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards With this invaluable resource, help students transform their playful wonderings into deeper questions about content–and develop the higher-level thinking skills they need for success in school and in life. “Educators often talk about developing lifelong learners - our team has had great success using Why Are School Buses Always Yellow? to catalyze professional conversations about how we can better cultivate curiosity through an inquiry approach. I strongly recommend this [new edition] for those who are interested in unlocking the uniquely creative capacity of our youngest learners.” Devin Vodicka, Superintendent Vista Unified School District, Vista, CA
Chapter 1: “What’s Wondering Got to Do With It?”: An Overview of Inquiry
One afternoon in the classroom of a third-grade teacher with whom I worked at Bradford Academy in Upper Montclair, New Jersey, I met several students sitting at their desks forming a small group of five. One young boy was named Keevan and he had a question:
“Why are school buses always yellow?”
Well, I sat back and looked at him and his classmates in wonder. Why, indeed, were all school buses painted yellow? I had no idea. Neither did anybody else, but they soon came up with several reasons including favorite colors, ability to see the buses in the dark, and others.
Keevan’s question was part ...