Inquiry-Based Learning in the Early Childhood Essay Sample
The following essay sample shall focus upon the need for inquiry-based learning for young children, the benefits of inquiry-based learning in the early years, and the types of inquiry-based learning.
Inquiry-based learning is a type of learning that focuses upon the role of a student in the process of learning. It is different from the traditional method of the learning process.
In this inquiry-based learning, the teacher instead of instructing students is rather encouraged to ask questions by themselves and to share their ideas and opinions. It may include group discussion, guided learning, and debate. It is a practical learning experience of any topic which is learned through discussion, experience, and exploration.
Inquiry-based learning is like experimental learning that actively involves students in the process of learning. It provides a chance to explore topics more deeply and they learn from their practical experiences. It helps the students to have a better understanding of a topic and to gain knowledge.
The young children have the curiosity to learn new concepts from their immediate environment which helps in engaging the social, physical, spiritual, emotional, cognitive dimensions.
Types of Inquiry-Based Learning
Different types of inquiry-based learning are suitable for the different classroom settings and are not suitable for all kinds of teaching and learning processes.
The four types of Inquiry-based learning process are:-
- Confirmation Inquiry – A teacher in this method of inquiry provides the student with a question, the answer to it, and the way to reach it. It improves the critical thinking abilities and research skills of a student.
- Structured Inquiry – A question and a method of investigation is given to the student and he needs to devise evidence for any conclusion drawn by him with the help of this investigation method.
- Guided Inquiry – An open-ended question is given to the students working in a group and they need to reach a conclusion with the help of any method designed by them.
- Open Inquiry – Students are given proper support and time which can pose questions that need to be investigated with the help of their original investigation ideas. They come up with their own conclusions and results.
Why an Inquiry-Based Learning is required for Young Children?
- Children in an early childhood setting carry the cultural identity of their home and family with them and their development is only possible in a socio-cultural environment.
Their minds are young so they can easily adapt to new things in life and inquiry-based learning can help them to develop a strong sense of identity.
- It is well known that for any nation the children are their assets and they are the potential contributors in the future. They can shape their own ideas and personality. Their habit of questioning and curiosity about the world can initiate an authentic inquiry-based learning process for a child.
- Children are good communicators and they learn and create genuine relationships with others with the help of playing and discussions with others. They are encouraged through inquiry-based learning to share ideas with others and to listen to the ideas of others and help in building meaningful relationships.
- They can easily identify their likes, abilities, dislikes, and emotions which gives them a sense of well-being. Inquiry-based learning helps the children to learn in different ways.
- Inquiry-based learning helps the children to be a better explorer of their concepts, interests, and questions with the help of social interaction and communication, role play, etc. It helps them to be more confident and engaging in the learning process.
Benefits of Inquiry-Based Learning in the Early Years
Inquiry-based learning has several benefits for the students and the teachers and is a modern learning approach. In this sample writing, we will discuss the five main benefits of the Inquiry-based learning approach for young children in the early childhood setting and they are:-
Children learn concepts fast
Inquiry-based learning helps in the deeper understanding of a concept and helps the students to absorb information at a fast pace as they are naturally very curious to learn.
It allows them to become very efficient in learning new skills and concepts which also stimulates the intellectual ability of a child. They learn from the questioning and investigation rather than a guided instruction from their teachers.
Inquiry-based learning is applicable to all classroom settings
Inquiry-based learning can be applied in every classroom setting. It helps in the reinforcement and expansion of relevant concepts. It is applied to any content, activity, project, and syllabus and also caters to the needs of students. This learning approach is flexible to the individual needs of the students and helps the children who have difficulty grasping lessons.
Inquiry-based learning makes the process rewarding
It makes the learning process rewarding for the children as they can devote the most of their time to learn as per their choice. They can discover with the help of a learning strategy and conclude what makes the learning process interesting and evolving.
Inquiry-based learning helps the children in getting their ownership
This learning approach helps the children to understand the deeper meaning of various concepts, the origination of ideas, working of rule, formula, and their application. Students can take ownership of their learning which empowers them as they have no bars in questioning.
Helps children in learning through different teaching methods
Inquiry-based learning gives an opportunity to the students to use differentiated instructions to learn from different learning processes and discussions. It helps in the processing of information and delivering of range of content in a way that fulfills the preferences and needs of the children.
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The above writing essay sample highlights the inquiry-based learning practice in the early childhood years.
Early Childhood Care and Education QQI Level 5, Early Childhood Education and Play FETAC Level 5, Childcare QQI Level 5, Child Development QQI Level 5 students can read this sample to gain professional knowledge on early childhood education and care.
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