Have you heard about inquiry-based learning?
I am here to show you simple examples to explore inquiry-based learning to help expand play at home!
I know. Inquiry-based learning sounds like a phrase that begins in the classroom.
But allow me to show you some simple ways you can integrate inquiry-based learning in your every day to inspire more meaningful play at home.
Play that creates chatter, and has unlimited extensions to leave you prompting from afar as you drink your morning coffee.
Activities that begin at the table and lends itself right into independent play.
Still with me? Awesome. Let’s dive in.
RELATED: Looking for simple activities for kids? Check out our activity cards that inspire play!
What is an inquiry-based approach to learning?
Simply put, inquiry-based learning is prompting a child with a question and allowing them to test out the hypothesis in a risk-free environment.
Kids need to play and manipulate parts and pieces for everything they are learning to link with prior knowledge and experiences.
connects play and problem-solving
expands upon prior knowledge and experiences
is hands-on learning through play
allows children to construct
allows reasonable risks
adds storytelling and increases vocabulary
RELATED: Kid activities at home are our jam. You will LOVE this list of easy ways to play at home.
What are the examples of inquiry?
Here, I asked my three boys,
How tall can you stack what you have in front of you?
My almost-three-year-old stacked larger wooden blocks.
It was up to him to change and explore which blocks help hold his block tower steady. Hands-on learning ideas are a great way to help motivate kids of all ages. You must check out our new BIG KID activity cards!
My almost five-year-old tried stacking rocks of different shapes and textures.
It was up to him to test his hypothesis on which rocks will hold steady and how to try again when they toppled over.
My six-year-old stacked small colored cubes.
It was his idea to build multiple layers side by side to add stability.
Holding these small blocks is also helping his pencil grip. I have 25+ activities to help improve pencil grip here.
These examples of inquiry-based learning take seconds (literally, seconds!) to set up!
- Place a small piece of paper in front of my child’s seat.
- Add an X for a visual starting place.
- Put the open-ended supply that my children were to stack to the left of the paper.
PRO TIP: I like to place supplies to the left so my boys get used to tracking the eyes left to right just like we read and write.
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Keep in mind, you can pick one supply to begin and add more over time to change up this inquiry-based learning activity.
Looking for even more inquiry-based learning examples?
You will love:
How to Encourage Block Play by The Workspace for Children
Mixing Colors by Busy Toddler
Fizzy Ice by Toddler Approved
Gravity Experiments – Teaching 2 and 3-Year-Olds
The Best Math Toys to inspire STEM by Days with Grey
Which inquiry-based learning example will you start with?