Innovation and inquiry are two significant aspects of the school district. Inquiry is the mindset that students use to build their own knowledge and understanding through an active, open-minded exploration of a meaningful question, problem, or issue. Through innovation grants, schools develop their inquiries to reflect the components of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning.

Students working

The big-idea questions signal that education is not just about learning “the answer” but about learning how to learn.

Grant Wiggins


Why are we focusing on Innovation and Inquiry?

Focusing on inquiry helps students synthesize and go deeper with their understanding of the curricular big ideas.  Using an inquiry approach fosters curiosity and exploration, as students draw from multiple sources to gain information and evidence to support their inquiry. We are focusing on how learning through inquiry will help personalize learning, help students engage in deeper learning and strengthen understanding of concepts and application beyond the classroom.

What learning and actions are we doing?

In our schools we are supporting educators in fostering students’ ability to link their learning to big ideas, and investigate questions and issues in multiple ways.  Throughout the district, and with the help of our Innovation Inquiry Grants, schools are engaged in learning how to further develop deep learning and conceptual understanding through focusing on big ideas and using inquiry learning processes. Examples of our learning and actions will be provided throughout the year.

How will we know we are making enough of a difference?

Our learning about big ideas and inquiry will develop over the next few years. At this time, we are aware that students who are learning in environments focused on big ideas and inquiry processes have a sense of curiosity and ownership. As part of our commitment to enhancing students’ learning and developing educators’ capacity and innovative practice, we will engage with students and schools to ask questions, review samples of learning, and collect feedback. Examples of how we are making a difference will be provided at key points in the school year.