In a classroom where inquiry-based learning occurs, pupils take an active role; they formulate questions and try to find answers. Formal explanations come at the end of an inquiry-based learning teaching sequence rather than at the beginning.
Inquiry-based learning promotes:
• Learning through challenging and open tasks;
• Independent and self-directed work with tasks and problems – for individuals and teams;
• More of a supporting role for teachers whose goal is to help pupils overcome difficulties with the learning and problem solving process through minimal, but precisely targeted assistance and strategic questions.
In PRIMAS we have sought to support teachers in developing pedagogies that allow them to work with pupils to develop inquiry skills in mathematics and science, through dissemination of "what works" in classrooms.
We have therefore provided:
• Professional development materials;
• Classroom materials for direct use by pupils;
• A range of professional development courses and other opportunities for teachers to explore effective teaching methods.