Creating Higher Level Questions In 9/10

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I tried something different with my grade 9/10 class this week to encourage higher level questions and quality (one week) research. It was based off of a book I had read a few weeks ago called “Make Just One Change”.

The students had to get into groups of 4 or 5. Each student was given a role like “time keeper”,”manager”or”scribe” which were explained at the start of the class. Then they had 7 mins to ask as many questions as they could inspired by the question focus statement:

Printmaking is a type of art that utilizes the ability to create multiple copies of art.

The tricky part of the task was they were not allowed to judge, or attempt to answer the questions even if they knew the answer they just had to record every single question onto a Google Doc. This document was shared with the group members so that they could then prioritize the three most important/interesting questions to them. They also had to choose two questions which would give them enough information to enable them to teach about printmaking history/techniques/culture (depending on their interest). Their final questions were shared on Today’s Meet.

Screen shot 2014-04-11 at 6.05.54 PMSo what types of questions did the students generate?

What is the difference between pop art and printmaking?

What was the most popular technique for printmaking during the 15th century?

What is the process of printmaking?

What elements are used in printmaking?

How is printmaking different from other art forms?

How can people express their feelings through printmaking?

Why would you need to make several copies of art if art is supposed to be unique?

What is the history of printmaking?

What careers are in the field of printmaking?

Awesome! I could not have been happier with the quality of questions. Now, the test was to see if they could actually follow through with the higher level of thinking. They were then asked to choose 1,2 or 3 questions which would enable them to satisfy the assessment criteria and allow them to teach two of their peers through the use of technology. Their peers then assessed them, gave them feedback and did a quiz to demonstrate what they had learnt.

Screen shot 2014-04-11 at 6.06.14 PMBased on the time limit I gave them I have to say I was really happy with their presentations. If I was to do this again with a longer time-frame, I would have them evaluate and improve their presentations and ask more in depth questions triggered from their research as they were really just starting to touch the surface of inquiry.


Overall I think this was a very successful introduction to the new unit. At least it has started great conversations about printmaking.

The next step will be designing their own print based on their choice of a theme from my Pinterest board: so stay tuned to see their creativity flow. We will be focusing on traditional vs digital printmaking/collage and mixed media techniques.



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