Branching Questions: Using the Question Formulation Technique in a Youth Tree Stewardship Program

by David Meshoulam, Ph.D. Editor’s Note: Check out this step-by-step video of David facilitating the Question Formulation Technique in a high school science class. This past summer I led a group of teenagers in Watertown, MA, in what will hopefully become an annual Trees for Watertown’s Teen Tree Stewardship Program. During the program teens learned about about […]

Integrating the Question Formulation Technique in PBL through the Launch

by Jennifer Pieratt, Ph.D. Leading organizations in the field of Project Based Learning (PBL) have identified inquiry as a characteristic of high quality PBL, and PBL facilitators are often interested in ways to sustain student inquiry; however after reflecting on my work in the field as an educator supporting teachers I have come to feel […]

Right Question Stories From the Field: Edible Packing Material, Smelly Barrels, and Regurgitated Owl Food

When educators use objects or images as a Question Focus it can send elementary school students’ minds racing in new directions. By Chris Orchard If a picture is worth a thousand words, how many questions is it worth? A lot, it seems. We’ve found that elementary school teachers often achieve great results with the Question […]

What If My Students’ Questions Go Off the Rails?

by Connie Williams Like any lesson ever, the Question Formulation Technique (QFT) doesn’t always go as perfectly as planned, but there’s always something you can learn from your facilitation of the QFT and students always benefit from having space and time to ask questions. I’ve certainly had those experiences where the Question Focus (QFocus) and […]

Right Question Stories from the Field: Farming on Volcanoes, Flint’s Water Crisis, and Excreting Isopods

How educators are using the Question Formulation Technique in STEM lessons around the country and world. By Chris Orchard Students in Alyssa Park’s fourth-grade class had a pressing question about isopods. Specifically, “Do they poop?” To refresh your memory, isopods are “small sessile-eyed aquatic or terrestrial crustaceans with the body composed of seven free thoracic […]

“How does the sun’s power get into you?” Using the QFT to Explore Energy with First Graders

By Jodie Botzang, First Grade Teacher, Summers’ Corners Public School, Aylmer, Ontario, Canada What I like about the Question Formulation Technique (QFT) process is that it provides an opportunity for my first graders to ask their questions without feeling insecure or judged on their prior knowledge. The idea that you ask every question that comes […]

My Ah-Ha Moments with the Question Formulation Technique

by Connie Williams When first starting to use the Question Formulation Technique (QFT), I thought I needed to run through the process as described each and every time. It made sense, after all, to complete it with fidelity so that I would know that I was doing it “right.” As I became more competent – […]

To Adapt, or Not to Adapt?: How Fidelity-Of-Implementation of the QFT Can Impact Student Outcomes

by Shelby Clark In the fall of 2015, my colleagues at Boston University and I set out to find out how the Question Formulation Technique (QFT) impacts high school student outcomes, in particular curiosity, divergent thinking (creativity), school engagement, and self-efficacy. On the one hand, we were particularly interested in knowing whether teaching students to […]

The Question Formulation Technique (QFT) in Social Studies

Steps of the Question Formulation Technique (QFT) & Video Guide After logging in or signing up for the Educator Network, click here to download detailed steps of the QFT and links to video footage for corresponding steps. Questions, Frameworks, and Classrooms By John Lee, Kathy Swan, SG Grant, Dan Rothstein, and Luz Santana The College, […]

The Question Formulation Technique for Deepening Thought

by Melanie Meehan Throughout the year, our district provides ongoing professional development from the Reading and Writing Project at Teachers College of Columbia University (TCRWP). Staff developers visit our district and do demonstration lessons, provide coaching, and lead study groups around reading and writing workshops and content area literacy instruction. They always share innovative tools […]