Date of Award
Master of Education (MEd)
Effective questioning techniques and the use of effective wait time can create a learning environment where all students are encouraged to process information and feel comfortable sharing their opinion. The root of reflective thinking lies in asking good questions and knowing how to ask them and when to ask them. Good questions create classroom interaction which has been found to promote student achievement. However, in our fast-paced classrooms, teachers tend to dominate discussions and often answer their own questions. This is where the effective use of wait time can be so crucial in establishing an atmosphere of inquiry – not inquisition. Too many students are left out or unengaged from the classroom because of the types of questions that are posed and the lack of waiting for responses.
Wouldn’t it be great if students discussed the material in class and were actively involved in their own learning? I believe that reflective thinking can occur in the high school classroom with just a few changes: teachers asking better questions and waiting an appropriate amount of time for the students’ response. If reflective thinking increases student achievement, then students will be able to go beyond “textbook” thinking and cultivate deeper and more creative thinking that will produce success inside and outside of the classroom.
Van Es, Jolyn M., "Encouraging Reflective Thinking in the High School Classroom: Effective Use of Questioning and Wait Time Strategies" (2006). Master of Education Program Theses. 12.