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Generating Questions


Questioning is a critical element of learning that promotes curiosity, focused inquiry, and self-regulation. Deliberate questioning is often the first step towards self-directed, metacognitive learning. Although questioning is natural, many students require explicit instruction in order to be able to apply questioning effectively to formal learning environments.


Questioning can fulfill many purposes: to generate interest, to maintain focus, to direct learning, and to expand inquiry. By becoming self-aware of the questioning process, students are able to take the first step towards deliberate metacognitive learning.

Content Area Adaptations 

Questioning is a basic element of learning, and students should be encouraged to use a wide variety of questioning techniques in any learning environment or subject area.

Learning Strategies 

  • Connecting
  • Determining Importance
  • Inferring
  • Metacognition
  • Predicting
  • Questioning

Content Areas 

  • ELA
  • Math
  • Science
  • Social Studies

Learning Strands 

  • Listening
  • Numeracy
  • Reading
  • Speaking
  • Writing

Elaborative Interrogation

This activity helps students to assimilate and consolidate new learning that is consistent with their prior knowledge. Students perform an iterative process of asking and answering the question “Why is this true?”, thus using their prior knowledge to justify and integrate their new learning.

Lesson Plan Stages 

  • Investigation
  • Synthesis

Guided Peer Questions

This group questioning activity helps students to learn effectively from a teacher presentation or a text. When engaged in Guided Peer Questioning, students are able to process, clarify, and extend the content of a presentation through structured interaction with their peers. The set of generic thought-provoking questions helps ensure that...

Lesson Plan Stages 

  • Investigation


This activity helps to guide students through the process of solving a mathematical word problem.  Students fill out a chart with the following columns as they complete a word problem:
K: What do you know?
N: What is not relevant?
W: What do you want to find out?
S: What strategy can you use?...

Lesson Plan Stages 

  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content