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<v Rick Madden>Good afternoon. This is Rick Madden. <v Rick Madden>The Ohio State University Telecommunications Center now brings you a live 2 <v Rick Madden>way discussion of educational problems and research between members of the faculty <v Rick Madden>of the Ohio State University College of Education and teachers of 7 <v Rick Madden>schools in Ohio. <v Rick Madden>Your host and moderator for this series is Dr. William McBride, assistant <v Rick Madden>dean of field relations at the College of Education of the Ohio State University. <v Rick Madden>Before introducing Dr. McBryde, here is our guest speaker for today, Dr. J. <v Rick Madden>Richard Suchman, educational consultant from Palo Alto, California. <v Rick Madden>Dr. Suchman. <v Dr. Suchman>I would like to begin by talking a little bit about what inquiry <v Dr. Suchman>is and what it isn't. <v Dr. Suchman>First of all, I don't consider it as a new way of teaching. <v Dr. Suchman>In fact, I hesitate to call it a way of teaching at all.
<v Dr. Suchman>Inquiry really is how people learn <v Dr. Suchman>when you leave them alone. <v Dr. Suchman>You stop to think of it. <v Dr. Suchman>There's a period of life in which all people are inquirers almost exclusively. <v Dr. Suchman>I'm thinking, of course, of the period from birth until the time person enters school. <v Dr. Suchman>Consider for a minute the child in the playpen. <v Dr. Suchman>Here we see a really full fledged inquirer, he's <v Dr. Suchman>exploring his world at a furious rate. <v Dr. Suchman>He's picking up objects. He's playing with them, turning them over in his hand, putting <v Dr. Suchman>them in his mouth, throwing them around. <v Dr. Suchman>He's not only inquiring with the physical world, but with the social world as well. <v Dr. Suchman>And he's interacting with people, various kinds of parents and siblings. <v Dr. Suchman>He's experimenting. He's trying out different ways of behaving and observing how they <v Dr. Suchman>other people respond. And he's learning a great deal about himself, about other
<v Dr. Suchman>people, and about his world in general. <v Dr. Suchman>This is a very effective way of learning. <v Dr. Suchman>As a matter of fact, probably the greatest amount of learning per <v Dr. Suchman>unit of time that we undergo in our life <v Dr. Suchman>is during that period. <v Speaker>So inquiry is, in a sense, the pursuit of understanding information, <v Speaker>new meaning. And it's characteristically this pursuit <v Speaker>under the guidance and control of the learner himself. <v Speaker>I think that's the chief characteristic of inquiry. <v Speaker>It's self-initiated, self-propelled, self-motivated. <v Speaker>I recently thought of a another way of describing it. <v Speaker>Maybe this will help a little. <v Speaker>I think of inquiry as involving the following things, <v Speaker>messing around with stuff, getting ideas, <v Speaker>messing around with ideas, and then messing around with stuff again.
<v Speaker>You'll notice that's a kind of cycle. <v Speaker>You start out with a contact with the real world. <v Speaker>It's there and you can sense it in many ways. <v Speaker>And as you do this as a human being, you were able to get ideas about the nature of this <v Speaker>world. And you you build up these ideas and they form a kind of map <v Speaker>of what the world is like that becomes very useful to you. <v Speaker>And then you start thinking about the map and comparing parts of it with other parts of <v Speaker>it and one map with another. And that's the messing around with ideas part. <v Speaker>But then you've always got to check that map out to see if it really does correspond with <v Speaker>reality. So finally, you're getting back to messing around with stuff again each time <v Speaker>and this cycle goes on over and over again as one inquires. <v Speaker>And as a matter of fact, you watch scientists or anybody involved in the process of <v Speaker>inquiry, you'll see these stages turning up in a cyclical form. <v Speaker>So I think we have to begin with the idea that we're all inquirers and <v Speaker>in some way or another in throughout our lives, we inquire in one
<v Speaker>way or another whether it's in the playpen or outside <v Speaker>of school or even in school. <v Speaker>But somehow we have managed in our schools to <v Speaker>create conditions that seem to inhibit inquiry in the classroom. <v Speaker>In fact, some classrooms are downright hostile to inquiry. <v Speaker>It becomes very difficult for a person who wants to inquire. <v Speaker>To do so under these conditions. <v Dr. Suchman>For one thing, it seems that the development <v Dr. Suchman>of inquiry is not very high or has not been very high <v Dr. Suchman>among our educational goals. <v Dr. Suchman>We seem to be much more concerned with the <v Dr. Suchman>amount and quality of the content that is stored by <v Dr. Suchman>the learner and somehow less concerned for one <v Dr. Suchman>reason or another with how this content is acquired.
<v Dr. Suchman>And as a matter of fact, with how the learner <v Dr. Suchman>develops the skills for acquiring new knowledge under his own <v Dr. Suchman>power. And I think this really comes to the crux of the matter <v Dr. Suchman>with respect to inquiry development, <v Dr. Suchman>how and why do we get <v Dr. Suchman>concerned with the building of skills <v Dr. Suchman>and attitudes in in the student? <v Dr. Suchman>That enabled him to be an effective learner under his own power. <v Dr. Suchman>A one who can set his own learning goals and who can <v Dr. Suchman>engineer the course of his own investigations and his own build <v Dr. Suchman>up of knowledge. <v Dr. Suchman>You might wonder why we should be concerned with this. <v Dr. Suchman>Maybe I should spend a little time talking about that. <v Dr. Suchman>First of all, I really don't think knowledge can be regarded as something like
<v Dr. Suchman>the stuff that fills a container like so much water in a tank. <v Dr. Suchman>If we examine it more carefully, I think knowledge is something more of a structure <v Dr. Suchman>than a lot of stuff. <v Dr. Suchman>Perhaps the analogy of a house would be more appropriate than water in a tank. <v Dr. Suchman>A house is a structure and it has parts and <v Dr. Suchman>some of these parts are more important for the structure than others. <v Dr. Suchman>The foundation certainly is a pretty important part. <v Dr. Suchman>The walls are important and so is the roof. <v Dr. Suchman>It would be inconceivable to have a house without walls <v Dr. Suchman>and there are functional relationships between these parts. <v Dr. Suchman>The walls support the roof and the foundation supports everything on top of it. <v Dr. Suchman>And a house is something that very often has to keep growing <v Dr. Suchman>because the family gets larger. We have to enlarge the sun porch
<v Dr. Suchman>and make it into another room and another story and make other changes <v Dr. Suchman>to accommodate the demands for space. <v Dr. Suchman>In order to enlarge a house, one has to know a good deal about it. <v Dr. Suchman>You've got to know where the joists are. <v Dr. Suchman>You've got to know what kinds of materials went into various parts. <v Dr. Suchman>And as a matter of fact, the more you know about a house, your house, <v Dr. Suchman>the better equipped you are to expand it, modify it. <v Dr. Suchman>You know where the outlets are and where the pipes are, etc.. <v Dr. Suchman>Well, I think this analogy holds true with respect to the enlargement of one's knowledge <v Dr. Suchman>structure. <v Dr. Suchman>Obviously, the knowledge structure can and should keep growing throughout life <v Dr. Suchman>as we have more experience, as we have more demands upon us, as we get able <v Dr. Suchman>to handle more sophisticated kinds of knowledge. <v Dr. Suchman>The structure itself must assume greater
<v Dr. Suchman>size and also a greater degree of interrelatedness of the parts. <v Dr. Suchman>It would be more parts. <v Dr. Suchman>And generally, it must become a more functional thing. <v Dr. Suchman>And if we know how this structure has been put together, <v Dr. Suchman>we are in a better position to modify it and enlarge it. <v Dr. Suchman>And the way in which we can be best acquainted with <v Dr. Suchman>the structure of our own knowledge is if we have played <v Dr. Suchman>a very important role in building it ourselves. <v Dr. Suchman>In other words, if our knowledge structure is the result of our own <v Dr. Suchman>inquiries and our own searching and our own building of this structure, we'll be in a <v Dr. Suchman>better position to know what we know, how we know it, how the parts are related to each <v Dr. Suchman>other, and how we can do something about expanding. <v Dr. Suchman>As a matter of fact, the more we get involved in producing knowledge, <v Dr. Suchman>the more we know about knowledge and how to increase it.
<v Dr. Suchman>If, on the other hand, all of our knowledge has been put together by an architect or an <v Dr. Suchman>engineer, just like calling somebody else in to build and expand your house, <v Dr. Suchman>then there's a likelihood that the job won't be <v Dr. Suchman>as effective, that the person who is not <v Dr. Suchman>familiar with the structure won't know where, where to make <v Dr. Suchman>the modifications and how to do it most effectively. <v Dr. Suchman>In this world today, where textbooks are being rewritten on the average <v Dr. Suchman>of every 10 years, where the knowledge explosion is such <v Dr. Suchman>a fantastic thing that we're having a great deal of difficulty keeping up with it in the <v Dr. Suchman>schools. <v Dr. Suchman>We need to take very careful consideration of the whole question of preparing <v Dr. Suchman>the child for keeping pace <v Dr. Suchman>with the change of the knowledge picture outside of him <v Dr. Suchman>so that his internal knowledge structure will be able to grow as rapidly as possible.
<v Dr. Suchman>This means we have to be concerned with his ability to revise his house <v Dr. Suchman>and expand it and modify it effectively. <v Dr. Suchman>This means that we need to concern ourselves with the maintenance of <v Dr. Suchman>the injury process in the child, the continuation of inquiry. <v Dr. Suchman>The kinds of inquiry that he was doing before he got to school, before we <v Dr. Suchman>started blocking inquiry. <v Dr. Suchman>And we have to consider what can be done in the school <v Dr. Suchman>to help children become effective. <v Dr. Suchman>In a sense, inquiry enables a person to <v Dr. Suchman>keep learning throughout his lifetime. <v Dr. Suchman>Now, the question of what conditions <v Dr. Suchman>are necessary in order for inquiry to take place and how can we create these <v Dr. Suchman>conditions in the school?
<v Dr. Suchman>The work that I was able to do at the University of Illinois over a period <v Dr. Suchman>of about eight years brought to light some very interesting things. <v Dr. Suchman>We were able to find that there are about three conditions that are <v Dr. Suchman>just about essential for children to be able to inquire. <v Dr. Suchman>The first of these is freedom, as simple as that, <v Dr. Suchman>but a particular kind of freedom. I'm not talking now about out and out permissiveness <v Dr. Suchman>where the child, the learner, can do anything he wishes. <v Dr. Suchman>I'm really talking about intellectual freedom. <v Dr. Suchman>There has to be room for the learner to make a great many choices <v Dr. Suchman>in the course of his own search for meaning and knowledge. <v Dr. Suchman>First is freedom to have ideas. <v Dr. Suchman>There's got to be lots of room for children not only to have ideas, <v Dr. Suchman>but to express them, to communicate them to other people in the very form
<v Dr. Suchman>that the child has created. <v Dr. Suchman>The children have to not only be given the freedom to express these ideas, but they have <v Dr. Suchman>to sense this freedom and use it. <v Dr. Suchman>They have to be autonomous in this freedom. <v Dr. Suchman>Without that freedom inquiry is impossible because the very nature <v Dr. Suchman>of inquiry is autonomy is the use <v Dr. Suchman>of these choices in creating ideas. <v Dr. Suchman>And secondly, in gathering information <v Dr. Suchman>to test these ideas. <v Dr. Suchman>The cycle I was talking about a few moments ago involves gathering <v Dr. Suchman>data, messing with stuff, and the learner has to be free <v Dr. Suchman>to gather the kinds of data at the time and in the sequence that he <v Dr. Suchman>needs those data in order to test the ideas that he has. <v Dr. Suchman>And so the freedom has two sides. <v Dr. Suchman>Freedom to have ideas and express them.
<v Dr. Suchman>And secondly, freedom to gather data as a way of checking these ideas out. <v Dr. Suchman>The second important condition has to do with the environment surrounding <v Dr. Suchman>the child. If he has ideas, <v Dr. Suchman>the environment must provide people who are there ready and <v Dr. Suchman>willing to listen to and try to understand his his ideas <v Dr. Suchman>and are ready and willing to respond to them in some way. <v Dr. Suchman>There is nothing more discouraging than for a child or for anybody as <v Dr. Suchman>far as that goes, to have a creative idea and then have somebody <v Dr. Suchman>listen to it and say, I'm sorry, you're wrong. <v Dr. Suchman>That's no good. <v Dr. Suchman>So that there has to be in this responsive environment a kind of <v Dr. Suchman>willingness to let a person's idea ride <v Dr. Suchman>and go on judged or condemned
<v Dr. Suchman>so that the individual has this idea, can find ways of <v Dr. Suchman>gathering data and deciding for himself whether his idea should <v Dr. Suchman>stand or be modified. <v Dr. Suchman>Too often we're very impatient that the child get the, quote, correct idea, <v Dr. Suchman>unquote. The idea that we the teacher have <v Dr. Suchman>rather than let letting the child hold onto his idea, compare <v Dr. Suchman>it with other ideas, listen to other people's ideas, gather data <v Dr. Suchman>and finally make a decision for himself as to what to do about. <v Dr. Suchman>And of course, when I say finally, I don't really mean that in an absolute sense. <v Dr. Suchman>We may have ideas for two or three years, which finally we give up because we have <v Dr. Suchman>access to new data that makes us feel we want to revise our thinking. <v Dr. Suchman>That's what I mean by this process of building and expanding <v Dr. Suchman>and reorganizing our own house, our own knowledge structure. <v Dr. Suchman>If somebody lets you decide for yourself when to change the knowledge structure because
<v Dr. Suchman>you have evidence and reason to do it, then the changes are yours and you know when <v Dr. Suchman>you've made them and why you've made it. <v Dr. Suchman>You also know which parts of your knowledge to have faith in because you're they are <v Dr. Suchman>supported by lots of evidence in which parts not to have so much faith. <v Dr. Suchman>And because perhaps you've accepted an idea that somebody gave you, but you don't have <v Dr. Suchman>any other evidence. <v Dr. Suchman>The other part of the responsive environment that I'm talking about has to do with <v Dr. Suchman>responsiveness and the sense of availability of data. <v Dr. Suchman>In order for a person to inquire, he's got to be able to get his hands on the data he <v Dr. Suchman>need. <v Dr. Suchman>If if a student is studying social studies, he's got to be able to get <v Dr. Suchman>support evidence to test his ideas. <v Dr. Suchman>Perhaps this is in the form of actual documents or other forms <v Dr. Suchman>of. Formation resource materials, and he's got to be able to pick from a vast <v Dr. Suchman>array of these. <v Dr. Suchman>Those things that he needs to test his particular ideas. <v Dr. Suchman>And so in the in computer language, we have to make it possible for the
<v Dr. Suchman>student to get random access to vast quantities of information. <v Dr. Suchman>And this requires a a new approach to curriculum. <v Dr. Suchman>I think a new approach to the selection of learning materials and the utilization of <v Dr. Suchman>learning materials. <v Dr. Suchman>The third important condition for inquiry has to do with an internal <v Dr. Suchman>psychological state of the learner. <v Dr. Suchman>It has to do with a kind of tension that is necessary in order for Ingrid to take <v Dr. Suchman>place. <v Dr. Suchman>If a child looks at a red grass. <v Dr. Suchman>This tension might come immediately. <v Dr. Suchman>He's never seen red grass before. And so immediately the question arises, why is the <v Dr. Suchman>grass red? <v Dr. Suchman>He's very likely to want to inquire into this so that he can satisfy himself <v Dr. Suchman>that he's not having an hallucination or something of that sort. <v Dr. Suchman>He wants to find out why the grass is red.
<v Dr. Suchman>On the other hand, he may see green grass and think nothing of it until somebody raises <v Dr. Suchman>a question Why is the grass green? <v Dr. Suchman>Such a question produces a kind of tension also. <v Dr. Suchman>Suddenly he begins to wonder about grass in a way he hadn't wondered before. <v Dr. Suchman>Yes. Why is it green? I never thought about that. <v Dr. Suchman>I've always accepted it as green, but I've never really thought about it. <v Dr. Suchman>Why is it green? <v Dr. Suchman>Whether the tension comes from my so-called exotic events such as red grass <v Dr. Suchman>or a commonplace event with an exotic question why is the grass green? <v Dr. Suchman>The tension is necessary for inquiry, and if the student does not <v Dr. Suchman>have this question inside of him, he won't have any reason <v Dr. Suchman>to inquire unless he's inquiring to please somebody else, in which case it's not genuine <v Dr. Suchman>inquiry. So we have to consider ways of generating this <v Dr. Suchman>tension, and I think the teacher's role is extremely important
<v Dr. Suchman>here. The teacher may bring into the classroom exotic materials or exotic <v Dr. Suchman>events like red grass. If there is such a thing, he can plunk a microscope <v Dr. Suchman>down in front of the students and say, take a look at that slide. <v Dr. Suchman>What do you think about it? That's likely to raise some tensions. <v Dr. Suchman>He might do read a passage and then race from Shakespeare and raise some questions about <v Dr. Suchman>it. There are countless ways in which teachers can provide a kind of focusing on the part <v Dr. Suchman>of the learner that enables him to have the motivation <v Dr. Suchman>to inquire. <v Dr. Suchman>This focusing can come after a student has formulated a theory. <v Dr. Suchman>He's got an idea. <v Dr. Suchman>He says the idea is, I think that the governments behave this way because <v Dr. Suchman>and he formulates his idea and the teacher listens to it and says, that's a very <v Dr. Suchman>interesting theory. I think I understand what you're saying. <v Dr. Suchman>But if that is so, then how do you account for this over here? <v Dr. Suchman>The teacher now is introducing some new data as a way of challenging
<v Dr. Suchman>the idea, not approving or disapproving, but building new tensions so that the student <v Dr. Suchman>feels that he wants to continue inquiry. <v Dr. Suchman>Now, these three conditions, freedom, response of environment <v Dr. Suchman>and focus are the three fundamental cornerstones on which <v Dr. Suchman>the process of inquiry rests. <v Dr. Suchman>And I think if we're going to bring the process of inquiry back into the classroom, <v Dr. Suchman>where I think it belongs as a very central thing, we've got to consider <v Dr. Suchman>the selection of materials, the training of teachers and the general procedures <v Dr. Suchman>for dealing with the process of education with these conditions in <v Dr. Suchman>mind. <v Dr. Suchman>I have been working with the development of such materials and we have developed <v Dr. Suchman>some particular materials that I think <v Dr. Suchman>serve this purpose. But I think there's a tremendous amount of room for teachers <v Dr. Suchman>to innovate here once they understand what the process is and once they
<v Dr. Suchman>feel comfortable in creating these conditions, I think there's a tremendous amount of <v Dr. Suchman>room for them to invent their own. <v Dr. Suchman>And this invention could be a very exciting thing. <v Dr. Suchman>I would like to suggest at this time, as a matter of fact, that <v Dr. Suchman>those of you who feel that you would like to explore this further <v Dr. Suchman>begin by trying to create these conditions in your own way, <v Dr. Suchman>by experimenting, by exploring some of the possibilities, <v Dr. Suchman>some of the things you can do it. <v Dr. Suchman>Would be to take the children on on field trips or bring objects into <v Dr. Suchman>the classroom or raise questions about issues. <v Dr. Suchman>In each case, starting with something very concrete, not with <v Dr. Suchman>an idea necessarily, but with something some object, some set of objects, some <v Dr. Suchman>conditions, some substances, depending on the subject area.
<v Dr. Suchman>Then allowing the children this freedom to have ideas and to gather data, <v Dr. Suchman>allowing them to operate in a kind of community of scholars climate, <v Dr. Suchman>where the children can exchange ideas and discuss back and <v Dr. Suchman>forth the merits of the various theories that each student has <v Dr. Suchman>and then gather additional data to test these and eventually perhaps to resolve, <v Dr. Suchman>at least on some basis, some of the differences. <v Dr. Suchman>Bearing in mind that there is no final basis <v Dr. Suchman>for conclusion in any instance, that inquiry is <v Dr. Suchman>always an open ended process, that somebody can always come up with a better theory, <v Dr. Suchman>possibly. And so you have no logical ending point, <v Dr. Suchman>but only a plateau of theory. <v Dr. Suchman>You stop at any given point with the best possible theory you can find, <v Dr. Suchman>hoping perhaps that you can have a better one tomorrow. <v Dr. Suchman>But knowing that the only basis upon which you can move ahead would be finding
<v Dr. Suchman>additional evidence or new ideas that help to clarify the problem <v Dr. Suchman>situation in some new way. <v Dr. Suchman>Finally, I would like to say that the only way a teacher can really <v Dr. Suchman>carry this out effectively is if he becomes an Inquirer <v Dr. Suchman>or himself, and one of the chief concerns for the <v Dr. Suchman>teacher as an Inquirer is the teaching learning process itself. <v Dr. Suchman>What are children like as learners? <v Dr. Suchman>How do they grow intellectually? <v Dr. Suchman>This is probably the greatest inquiry of all and one of the most exciting. <v Dr. Suchman>I'd like at this point to wish you luck on your voyage. <v Rick Madden>Thank you, Dr. Suchman, for your presentation and your excellent slides. <v Rick Madden>Mr. Reed, we welcome you to our program today as a panelist. <v Rick Madden>We are looking forward to practical questions from you as this part of our program moves
<v Rick Madden>along. But before we begin our questioning today, <v Rick Madden>we will pause 10 seconds for station identification. <v Rick Madden>This is the Ohio Educational Network. <v Announcer>In Columbus, Ohio. This is WOSU FM, <v Announcer>89.7 Megahertz. <v Rick Madden>We'll begin our questioning at this point and go immediately to Aida high school <v Rick Madden>in Aida, Ohio. Mr. Paul Kramer there. <v Paul Kramer>This is Paul Kramer at Aida School. <v Paul Kramer>Our first question is how can we help but stifle inquiry when we <v Paul Kramer>have 30 students in the classroom? <v Rick Madden>This is the age old problem of having numbers of people and still doing <v Rick Madden>this sort of thing. Dr. Suchman, would you like to respond to that question? <v Dr. Suchman>I'd be happy to. <v Dr. Suchman>I think we have to think about the 30 children in a classroom <v Dr. Suchman>as 30 individual inquirers and not necessarily a group
<v Dr. Suchman>or a monolithic group of 30 students. <v Dr. Suchman>I think our earlier notions of teaching as a kind of showing <v Dr. Suchman>and telling process used to make us feel as though <v Dr. Suchman>these children were coming in awfully large numbers. <v Dr. Suchman>I've seen 30 children, 32 or as many as 40 children in a classroom wall <v Dr. Suchman>inquiring simultaneously <v Dr. Suchman>and really moving along beautifully. <v Dr. Suchman>I think a lot has to do with the kind of responsive environment that you're able to <v Dr. Suchman>provide the children and the kinds of focus foci that <v Dr. Suchman>you make available if the children are in small groups of three and four. <v Dr. Suchman>And if they are having many opportunities to discuss their ideas <v Dr. Suchman>with each other, if they have access to a wide range of resources, <v Dr. Suchman>opportunities to experiment with materials, if if it's in an area where experimentation
<v Dr. Suchman>is going to provide a responsive environment, I think <v Dr. Suchman>that you can deal with a great many children. <v Dr. Suchman>I don't think the numbers necessarily pose the great problem. <v Dr. Suchman>I think it's more the question of of providing these children with stimuli, <v Dr. Suchman>with materials and questions that raise their curiosity and <v Dr. Suchman>get them interested in pursuing greater meaning. <v Dr. Suchman>And I think that 32 is quite manageable group for this. <v Rick Madden>The question that Mr. Kramer raises, obviously, is one and a part of <v Rick Madden>the pattern of an educational philosophy which says that every child must be doing <v Rick Madden>the same thing. <v Rick Madden>And I think you are saying that every child does not have to do the same. <v Rick Madden>Am I correct? I don't want to put words in your mouth. But I'm just wondering if-. <v Dr. Suchman>Yes. Well, You've done very well with this. <v Dr. Suchman>Yeah. As a matter of fact, I think our older notions of education <v Dr. Suchman>say that education is successful to the extent that we make all the children <v Dr. Suchman>alike. That is, our objectives tend to prescribe what the child will
<v Dr. Suchman>be like at the end of the year. And teachers typically would ask the question. <v Dr. Suchman>And now, boys and girls, what have we learned today? <v Dr. Suchman>And I think through the course of inquiry, we find that children become more <v Dr. Suchman>and more different from each other. And I I feel that this is a desirable goal of <v Dr. Suchman>education to allow these differences to manifest themselves. <v Rick Madden>Mr. Reed, you obviously are a man who has been a part of the educational system <v Rick Madden>for some years. What would be your reaction to this? <v Rick Madden>Can we break this lockstep of every child in a classroom of 30 doing exactly the same <v Rick Madden>thing? <v Gerald Reed>I think we can. <v Gerald Reed>I think it's something we should work toward. <v Gerald Reed>I don't think we have been doing a very good job of it in the past. <v Gerald Reed>I think that I'm very much interested in this kind <v Gerald Reed>of learning and find it. <v Gerald Reed>I'm going to have to do a lot of studying and preparing myself so that I can give it a <v Gerald Reed>trial. <v Rick Madden>Mr. Kramer and Aida, we're coming back to you now to see what further elaboration
<v Rick Madden>you might like to have on this on your question. <v Paul Kramer>No, I answered the question very well. <v Rick Madden>We will next go to Chillicothe High School. <v Rick Madden>Mrs. Amelia van Vorhees there. <v Amelia van Vorhees>This is Mrs. Amelia van Vorhees. <v Amelia van Vorhees>Would you con- would you say that the average college lecture type classroom <v Amelia van Vorhees>in which teachers receive much of their training is hostile to inquiry? <v Amelia van Vorhees>If so, how do we train teachers to inqui- to the inquiry process? <v Rick Madden>Very good. I'm going to let you go right to that one. <v Dr. Suchman>I guess I jumped the gun there. I was so eager to answer that. <v Dr. Suchman>Yeah. I think that the the lecture setting, of course, has a message <v Dr. Suchman>of its own. That knowledge is something that's dished out by some authority and that <v Dr. Suchman>students are supposed to stop it up like a sponge. <v Dr. Suchman>Obviously, that picture you saw with the liquid being poured into the head container got <v Dr. Suchman>that message across, I think.
<v Dr. Suchman>Yeah. I think this is a very bad preparation for teachers. <v Dr. Suchman>I think it continues reinforcing something which was taught to our teachers <v Dr. Suchman>when they went through school themselves. And I think we tend to reinforce it in our <v Dr. Suchman>teacher education programs when we teach them that way. <v Dr. Suchman>I think that the preparation of teachers ought to be an inquiry itself, as a matter of <v Dr. Suchman>fact. I I think the teachers ought to begin their preparation <v Dr. Suchman>by being together with children in very small numbers at first, maybe one child at a <v Dr. Suchman>time, and allowed to explore what children are like in very simple, direct <v Dr. Suchman>ways and being allowed to get ideas from this <v Dr. Suchman>and to discuss these ideas with fellow students in education and in the presence <v Dr. Suchman>of their professors and evolve for themselves a theoretical structure about <v Dr. Suchman>the nature of children and learning and the teaching learning process. <v Dr. Suchman>I think teacher education ought to be a an inquiry into just <v Dr. Suchman>this and it ought to be done in a much more enquiring way. <v Dr. Suchman>The more didactic we are with teachers, the more didactic they're going to be with their
<v Dr. Suchman>pupils because people teach the way they learn. <v Rick Madden>This is interesting that you say this, and I'm I'm curious to know what your reaction <v Rick Madden>would be to to the idea that maybe there needs to be a <v Rick Madden>change of idea. <v Rick Madden>It's the concept you have about it is the reason I'm here to sop <v Rick Madden>this knowledge or am I here to inquire? <v Dr. Suchman>Yes. Well, I think that that's the message we give them. <v Dr. Suchman>If we if we line them up in rows, in lecture rooms and throw the stuff at them <v Dr. Suchman>as though we are keepers of the truth and we are now vesting this truth in them, <v Dr. Suchman>that they will get the message that this is what education is all about, shoving things <v Dr. Suchman>that people and filling a tank, and they'll walk away with that message and take it into <v Dr. Suchman>their own teaching. They'll reflect that model. <v Rick Madden>Do you think that the we really somewhere another have to begin the the the concept <v Rick Madden>of changing this at our level? Or are they teachers themselves? <v Rick Madden>By this, I mean the pupils in a class in teacher education
<v Rick Madden>likely to become inquirers even in spite of this kind of preparation? <v Dr. Suchman>Well, every once in a while you'll find somebody who becomes a good teacher despite <v Dr. Suchman>our teacher education. <v Dr. Suchman>But I think that we could do a lot to change this. <v Dr. Suchman>I think we could make lots of space, lots of room for students of education to become <v Dr. Suchman>inquirers. Obviously, if we started this before they got the college, you would even be <v Dr. Suchman>better. Somebody who begins is actually we begin our teacher education <v Dr. Suchman>when we're born. And all of our life is preparation for the day. <v Dr. Suchman>We step into the classroom, in a sense. <v Dr. Suchman>And if most of that is time where we're allowed to inquire, I think we'll be much better <v Dr. Suchman>able to let kids inquire when we become teachers. <v Rick Madden>We'll return to Chillicothe. Mrs. Van Voorhees, further comments? <v Amelia van Vorhees>No, thank you. <v Rick Madden>We will now go to Circleville Junior High School, Fred Goeglein there. <v Fred Goeglein>This Fred Goeglein Circleville. <v Fred Goeglein>We have actually 3 questions at this time.
<v Fred Goeglein>Actually, 2 questions are very similar and are tied together. <v Fred Goeglein>Do you think that learning through inquiry is a significant and indispensible way <v Fred Goeglein>of learning and in connection with this would you please suggest <v Fred Goeglein>some ways in which independent study time for individual learning might be made possible? <v Rick Madden>Would you like to deal with those two questions? <v Dr. Suchman>All right. Yes. <v Dr. Suchman>As I said earlier, that I think that inquiry not only is indispensable, <v Dr. Suchman>I think this is the way people learn when you leave them alone. <v Dr. Suchman>This is the this is the natural learning process of human beings. <v Dr. Suchman>I think we if we deny human beings the opportunity to learn this way, <v Dr. Suchman>then we are trying to swim upstream. <v Dr. Suchman>And I don't think there's any reason to. People are motivated to learn as enquirers. <v Dr. Suchman>And we do a great deal of this before anybody tries to regulate this process <v Dr. Suchman>and intervene in teaching. <v Dr. Suchman>This is not to say that I'm against stepping in
<v Dr. Suchman>and intervening. It's just that I think we need to make lots more room for it. <v Dr. Suchman>Now, the practical matter of how we do this with independent study time. <v Dr. Suchman>I think that the time is best used once the student is <v Dr. Suchman>engaged in some kind of inquiry. <v Dr. Suchman>Once he's interested enough in getting meaning about something to the point <v Dr. Suchman>where he wants to do something about it. <v Dr. Suchman>And that means messing around with something, gathering data, <v Dr. Suchman>theorizing, testing theories, going out and sampling the world and <v Dr. Suchman>thinking about it and coming up with ideas in relation to these experiments <v Dr. Suchman>or studies, whatever he's engaged in. <v Dr. Suchman>I think that once the the learner catches fire, so to speak, once <v Dr. Suchman>he's really involved in pursuing meaning, he'll use his independent study time. <v Dr. Suchman>If we give him the freedom to use it the way he wants to and if we provide <v Dr. Suchman>him with the resources he needs to get the data he's looking for. <v Dr. Suchman>You just can't give him freedom without any way of using it.
<v Dr. Suchman>I think we have to really try to provide him with the best possible <v Dr. Suchman>resources for his investigations. <v Rick Madden>Do you conceive of all of education being this kind of thing? <v Rick Madden>Is there any place in our educational program at all where you really <v Rick Madden>try to accumulate and absorb subject matter for the sake of accumulating <v Rick Madden>and or absorbing subject matter? <v Dr. Suchman>Well, I let's say that I think there there is plenty of room for for <v Dr. Suchman>didactic teaching or for even rote learning for certain kinds of things. <v Dr. Suchman>I think the child has to rote learning his multiplication table. <v Dr. Suchman>I think it's a I say he has to because I think that there are times when <v Dr. Suchman>this is having this knowledge at your fingertips as mighty handy. <v Dr. Suchman>And to have to sit down and figure it out every time seems like a tremendous waste of <v Dr. Suchman>energy. I think that there are certain kinds of learning that <v Dr. Suchman>for which this is a very useful and very important. <v Dr. Suchman>What I think that it's it ought
<v Dr. Suchman>to be within a general context of inquiry. <v Dr. Suchman>In other words, children may be exploring an idea <v Dr. Suchman>or trying to find meaning in some particular experience, trying to explain it. <v Dr. Suchman>I'd say and I suddenly realize that a teachable moment <v Dr. Suchman>has arrived, has arisen that there there's a particular <v Dr. Suchman>time now where it seems appropriate for me to introduce <v Dr. Suchman>this child to a particular concept. And so I step in and I try to help him develop a new <v Dr. Suchman>concept that will help him continue his inquiry more productively. <v Dr. Suchman>Now, within the context of inquiry, I think there's plenty of room for program learning, <v Dr. Suchman>for didactic teaching and for rote learning as a way to help him become a more powerful <v Dr. Suchman>inquiry. <v Rick Madden>Mr. Reed, I see that you are getting itchy in your chair. <v Rick Madden>You must have a question. <v Gerald Reed>How does a teacher encourage inquiry for students in an arithmetic <v Gerald Reed>class? <v Dr. Suchman>Well, of course, now arithmetic, as it's been conceived and
<v Dr. Suchman>applied in the school, is one of the things Joe Schwab calls the axiomatics. <v Dr. Suchman>Arithmetic is a kind of how to do it area that <v Dr. Suchman>your whole your whole objective at inquiry is to get an answer. <v Dr. Suchman>And arithmetic is to get an answer to a problem. <v Dr. Suchman>My feeling is that where arithmetic is concerned, persay, <v Dr. Suchman>I think that perhaps we ought to deal more with the specific skills here <v Dr. Suchman>and help the children develop them through various kinds of exercises. <v Dr. Suchman>But arithmetic is of course, not all of mathematics nixes is simply one <v Dr. Suchman>small part of mathematics. <v Gerald Reed>I would like to ask then do you think this kind of learning lends <v Gerald Reed>itself well in the study of mathematics? <v Dr. Suchman>Inquiry? Yes, by all means. <v Dr. Suchman>I think mathematics is. <v Dr. Suchman>It involves the understanding of quantitative relationships. <v Dr. Suchman>And I feel that the children can explore these in great many ways
<v Dr. Suchman>on their own. I will take, for example, ?inaudible?. <v Dr. Suchman>I think this is a good example of how we have moved from the old approach to mathematics, <v Dr. Suchman>where here a child dealing concretely with quantitative <v Dr. Suchman>relationships in the form of blocks can begin <v Dr. Suchman>to essentially invent for himself symbolic systems <v Dr. Suchman>that account for or describe the relationships he sees in the concrete blocks. <v Dr. Suchman>Now, that's a far cry from the kind of arithmetic that we used to teach. <v Dr. Suchman>It's a matter of fact, it isn't really arithmetic. <v Dr. Suchman>And increasing your blocks is not arithmetic at all. <v Dr. Suchman>But dealing with very fundamental mathematical events. <v Rick Madden>We'll return now to Circleville, Mr Goeglein line there. <v Fred Goeglein>The only thing that we might ask in connection indirectly connection with this <v Fred Goeglein>is that doesn't the inquiry approach requires a great deal or a rigid grouping for <v Fred Goeglein>students of different abilities in certain areas?
<v Rick Madden>This obviously is an organizational pattern. <v Rick Madden>Do we need to teach this way, do we- are there levels of inquiry <v Rick Madden>must we deal with one either socioeconomic or one intellectual group at one level <v Rick Madden>and another one at another level and another at another level? <v Rick Madden>Are there levels that we need to deal with here? <v Dr. Suchman>I believe I understood the question to be involved rigid grouping and I, <v Dr. Suchman>my feeling is that the rigidity here is not at all necessary. <v Dr. Suchman>I think it's quite undesirable. <v Rick Madden>Let's, let's return then to Circleville and to Mr. Goeglein Line to see <v Rick Madden>if we have gotten the question correctly. <v Speaker>Yes, that's correct. I just wanted to find out what his opinion was on that in regard <v Speaker>to rigid grouping and in connection with the inquiry method. <v Dr. Suchman>Yeah. Let me say that I think not only should there be flexibility, but I think <v Dr. Suchman>the grouping has to evolve in terms of the interest and the needs of the children, both <v Dr. Suchman>as perceived by the children themselves and by the teacher. <v Dr. Suchman>Sometimes it's good for children who are inquiring to be together with other children who
<v Dr. Suchman>are operating somewhat at the same level of knowledge and understanding in the area that <v Dr. Suchman>they're inquiring into. Sometimes that helps a great deal to be to have a wide range. <v Dr. Suchman>And I think that a good deal of sensitivity to <v Dr. Suchman>this helps a lot. But I would certainly veer away from any kind <v Dr. Suchman>of fixed pattern. I think teachers have to experiment with this. <v Dr. Suchman>And so do students. <v Rick Madden>This implies a certain kind of teacher that is somewhat different than <v Rick Madden>we have thought about in the past. <v Rick Madden>Here is a diagnostic prescriptive kind of thing for each individual. <v Rick Madden>Would you like to speak to that point just a little bit? <v Rick Madden>Dr. Schulman? <v Dr. Suchman>Certainly, yes. <v Dr. Suchman>I think that we need teachers who are <v Dr. Suchman>somewhat more relaxed and the pressure is off. <v Dr. Suchman>And that means teachers who who are feeling comfortable about experimenting and <v Dr. Suchman>not knowing how things are going to work out for sure. <v Dr. Suchman>I think that that kind of teachers, it does exist already.
<v Dr. Suchman>I think that one of the things we can do to create more of such teachers is to take the <v Dr. Suchman>pressures off them. I think people are more willing to try things out and <v Dr. Suchman>not be afraid to experiment. <v Dr. Suchman>If we make this kind of thing OK, that is administratively, <v Dr. Suchman>if we make the teachers feel that we expect them to do this sort of thing, <v Dr. Suchman>that it's it's understood that a teacher <v Dr. Suchman>is going to have to try things out. And in order to grow professionally, I think the <v Dr. Suchman>teacher has to be an inquirer into the process of education. <v Dr. Suchman>And the only way you can do this is by experimenting yourself as a teacher. <v Rick Madden>I hope I won't spoil another question that may come up later on the network, but I think <v Rick Madden>it's real appropriate at this time for me then to ask the question how is teaching <v Rick Madden>by inquiry as you are defining it, likely to fit in with a prescribed <v Rick Madden>course of study or meeting the testing programs that we are, that we deal with regionally <v Rick Madden>or nationally? <v Dr. Suchman>Well, there are 2 answers to that. First of all, I think there's considerable
<v Dr. Suchman>evidence now that if children or anybody is learning by inquiry in the long run, <v Dr. Suchman>his, his knowledge is going to be considerably greater than if he's taught didactically. <v Dr. Suchman>And I'm saying in the long run, in the short run, possibly the reverse may be true <v Dr. Suchman>in a in a very short period of time. If I had 2 hours to work with a group of children <v Dr. Suchman>and have them pass a particular test, I think I would be very didactic. <v Dr. Suchman>But if I had 2 years, for, and I'm not just saying for 1 test, <v Dr. Suchman>I've had 2 years with those children in terms of the range of material that I would <v Dr. Suchman>ordinarily teach in a 2 year period, I'd feel much better about letting them enquire <v Dr. Suchman>when they're inquiring, they're learning most of the time when we're teaching <v Dr. Suchman>didactically. They may be learning some of the time when I'm talking, but a lot of that <v Dr. Suchman>time I'm not at all sure they would be learning. <v Dr. Suchman>So I think my feeling here is as for the <v Dr. Suchman>the positive effects of inquiry in terms of the gains of the children cognitively. <v Dr. Suchman>Now as far as the tests are concerned, here's the other answer.
<v Dr. Suchman>I think we we we may be measuring the wrong things with our tests. <v Dr. Suchman>I think there's a great danger that our tests are measuring one kind of thing. <v Dr. Suchman>An inquiry is developing quite another, so that until we have a ways of assessing <v Dr. Suchman>the gains that children are making through inquiry that are quite apart from the simple <v Dr. Suchman>notions that are being tested by the test, then we really can't use <v Dr. Suchman>those tests to measure the effects of a programme that focuses on inquiry. <v Rick Madden>So we would have to have another kind of testing programme when and if we move into this <v Rick Madden>kind of thing. <v Dr. Suchman>Certainly another approach to evaluation which does exist. <v Dr. Suchman>We've worked on this and there are other ways of assessing growth in pupils besides <v Dr. Suchman>the existing standardized tests. <v Rick Madden>Before we continue with our questioning, we will have <v Rick Madden>our station break at this moment. <v Rick Madden>This is the Ohio Education Network. <v Announcer>In Columbus, Ohio, this is WOSUFM 89.7 Megahertz.
<v Rick Madden>We will continue our questioning by going to Kettering Board of Education Building <v Rick Madden>Kettering L. Howard Flatterer is there. <v Mr. Segments>This is Mr. Segments speaking for Mr. Flatterer. <v Mr. Segments>We have 2 questions and we would like to give this question first. <v Mr. Segments>Being interested in the development of creative thinking in children, I see an excellent <v Mr. Segments>possibility of encouraging creativity through inquiry learning. <v Mr. Segments>Have any studies been attempted that would suggest specific techniques and specific <v Mr. Segments>materials to facilitate the process of creativity through inquiry <v Mr. Segments>teaching? <v Rick Madden>Now, we have 2 things here, and by definition, we've used the word creativity <v Rick Madden>and we have used the word inquiry. <v Rick Madden>In your context. Dr. Suchman, when do you separate these 2 or are they 1 and <v Rick Madden>the same thing for you? <v Dr. Suchman>Oh, that's of course, it's a difficult thing to answer because people who use <v Dr. Suchman>word words in different ways.
<v Dr. Suchman>My own feeling is that there is a good deal of creativity involved in inquiry. <v Dr. Suchman>Actually, the process of inquiry involves going beyond data to formulate <v Dr. Suchman>ideas and theories. Now, this is a highly creative process. <v Dr. Suchman>There are no rules. There is no algorithm for moving from data to theory. <v Dr. Suchman>It's a leap and it's it's got to be a creative leap. <v Dr. Suchman>So the child looks at some phenomenon and he gets a theory. <v Dr. Suchman>Well, a theory doesn't come to him in any kind of automatic way. <v Dr. Suchman>It emerges as a creative act on his part. <v Dr. Suchman>Now, there may be more specific rules for testing the theory, even that, though, would <v Dr. Suchman>involve some creativity. But I don't see them as 2 separate things. <v Dr. Suchman>I think a creative act is seen time and again in the process of inquiry. <v Rick Madden>Now, I'd like to go back to Kettering to see whether their concept of creativity <v Rick Madden>was a separate thing or rather it was a unitary thing, as Dr. Suchman <v Rick Madden>has indicated. <v Mr. Segments>Well, I would say in commenting on that, that our idea with
<v Mr. Segments>creativity and the development of creativity is the point that we <v Mr. Segments>really are questioning as to whether creativity can be developed. <v Mr. Segments>We believe that it can, consequently seeking a means to develop <v Mr. Segments>it. It appears that inquiry method of learning would be an ideal <v Mr. Segments>vehicle for this purpose. <v Mr. Segments>So in that way, I presume that we are talking about one and the same thing, <v Mr. Segments>although there are some factors related to Dr. Suchman's speech <v Mr. Segments>that would indicate that in all instances of inquiry, would we, <v Mr. Segments>inquiry learning, could we go along with this? <v Mr. Segments>We would have to leave it more open ended in all of respects <v Mr. Segments>in order to develop the idea of creativity. <v Dr. Suchman>Well, I think that the creativity comes <v Dr. Suchman>about as a result of a number of conditions. <v Dr. Suchman>So let me let me talk about these and then you can decide for yourself whether inquiry
<v Dr. Suchman>learning as through inquiry would do it. <v Dr. Suchman>I think for one thing, the autonomy is a tremendously important factor. <v Dr. Suchman>If a child is not or anybody is not autonomous, he can't be creative because <v Dr. Suchman>autonomy is by definition self-direction, self initiation, self-control. <v Dr. Suchman>And if you haven't got this, can this autonomous <v Dr. Suchman>way of functioning, then you can't create. <v Dr. Suchman>Simple as that. I think inquiry develops autonomy. <v Dr. Suchman>It makes a child or anybody more <v Dr. Suchman>in charge of his own learning and his own operations as a learner. <v Dr. Suchman>Then I think the inquiry also leads <v Dr. Suchman>to the expansion of one's knowledge structure, a meaningful expansion that grows <v Dr. Suchman>from the concrete toward the abstract. <v Dr. Suchman>And I think there is nothing like an expanding knowledge structure
<v Dr. Suchman>to give you the ammunition you need as a creative person. <v Dr. Suchman>Inquiry also builds one's skills for <v Dr. Suchman>applying ideas and testing them. <v Dr. Suchman>And here again, I think this can in many instances play an <v Dr. Suchman>important role in the creative process. <v Dr. Suchman>So in a sense, I guess I feel that inquiry builds the number of the functions <v Dr. Suchman>it is learning through inquiry tends to build a number of the functions that <v Dr. Suchman>are involved in being creative, a creative person. <v Rick Madden>We'll return to Kettering now to see whether there is further elaboration on that <v Rick Madden>question. <v Mr. Segments>We'll let it rest there. <v Rick Madden>We'll then proceed to Montgomery County in Dayton. <v Rick Madden>Mr. Harry France there. <v Harry France>Montgomery County has no further questions. <v Harry France>Thank you. <v Rick Madden>We will then go on to Shawnee High School. <v Rick Madden>Amol Childs, there. <v Amol Childs>In regards Dr. Suchman's comments, he says there are some inquiry
<v Amol Childs>evaluation materials available. <v Amol Childs>Would he be able to comment on a few of these this time? <v Dr. Suchman>Well, let me speak of one. <v Dr. Suchman>It's called the Inquiry Box. <v Dr. Suchman>It's a device which enables a person <v Dr. Suchman>to try to develop a theory in relation to what's inside a wooden box that's been closed. <v Dr. Suchman>Inside the box there's a mechanical linkage, which has been set up. <v Dr. Suchman>There are a number of such linkages that can be set up in the box. <v Dr. Suchman>And there were slots around the outside of the box so that the learner can manipulate <v Dr. Suchman>the parts of this linkage that's that protrude from the box and observe how an input <v Dr. Suchman>affects an output. But they can't see what's in the middle. <v Dr. Suchman>And then they have a probing device, a stick which can be used, <v Dr. Suchman>inserted through this lot as a way of determining further what's inside. <v Dr. Suchman>Now, there's a theory sheet that's placed on top of the box where the child records what <v Dr. Suchman>he thinks is inside the box out.
<v Dr. Suchman>There are ways of recording the operations of a student as he tries <v Dr. Suchman>to ascertain what's inside. And as he records this on the theory sheet and there are <v Dr. Suchman>ways of diagnosing the strategies that the child uses so that you can begin to see <v Dr. Suchman>the way he's going about this process of building and testing <v Dr. Suchman>his theory. <v Dr. Suchman>This is one of a number of possibilities. <v Dr. Suchman>We develop something called the Quest Test, which is <v Dr. Suchman>a an inquiry session where the student is shown a film <v Dr. Suchman>of a physical event and then is given a given a certain <v Dr. Suchman>amount of time to ask questions, to gather data pertaining to this event <v Dr. Suchman>so that he can devise a theory. <v Dr. Suchman>After about 25 minutes, he is, <v Dr. Suchman>the session is over, an extensive interview is conducted with the student <v Dr. Suchman>to find out just what knowledge he has gathered as a result of his inquiries. <v Dr. Suchman>And then the questioning strategy is analyzed later as a basis for
<v Dr. Suchman>looking at his inquiry process. <v Dr. Suchman>These are just two of the existing materials <v Dr. Suchman>that have been developed for analyzing and assessing the child <v Dr. Suchman>is an inquirer. <v Rick Madden>If there is a reason for further word on this communication directed <v Rick Madden>to you was your you would be welcome. <v Rick Madden>We'll go back to Amol Childs at Shawnee to see where there's further elaboration on this <v Rick Madden>that he would like to make. <v Amol Childs>No more further, we'll contact Dr. Suchman by letter. <v Amol Childs>Thank you. <v Rick Madden>We will then move on to North High School in Springfield, Carl Wybert <v Rick Madden>there,. <v Carl Wybert>Yes, I'm here and we have not <v Carl Wybert>a lot of questions, but there is 1 thing that I would like to have cleared up. <v Carl Wybert>Mentions that the internal psychological state of the learner was important <v Carl Wybert>and it had to do with a kind of tension that's necessary for inquiry <v Carl Wybert>take place, that the tension is necessary for
<v Carl Wybert>inquiry. And we could should consider ways of generating this tension. <v Carl Wybert>Mental health people continually advise the teachers to reduce <v Carl Wybert>and keep tensions and students to as low as <v Carl Wybert>possible. Can you explain how the tension referred to here <v Carl Wybert>is different from the tension that the mental hygienist might be speaking <v Carl Wybert>of? <v Dr. Suchman>I, I think and I I'm not going to say that I'm absolutely <v Dr. Suchman>sure. But I think the kind of tension that they're referring to has more to <v Dr. Suchman>do with anxiety, tensions produced by perhaps <v Dr. Suchman>fears that one isn't going to succeed or one isn't being accepted. <v Dr. Suchman>I'm referring to quite a different kind of tension. <v Dr. Suchman>It's a tension that's borne out of the feeling <v Dr. Suchman>that you would like to have more meaning pertaining to something than you have.
<v Dr. Suchman>Call it a motivation. Call it a drive. <v Dr. Suchman>Call it a wish. I happened to choose the word tension because it <v Dr. Suchman>just seemed appropriate. <v Dr. Suchman>It isn't that the child is unhappy. It's not that he's feeling down. <v Dr. Suchman>It's just that he's he's feeling that he would like to to <v Dr. Suchman>rise to this occasion and find some way of making more sense out of this thing <v Dr. Suchman>that he's looking at or that he's hearing or whatever. <v Dr. Suchman>And I think if he's perfectly content with his level of understanding <v Dr. Suchman>with something, he's not going to do anything. <v Dr. Suchman>He's not going to try to raise his level of meaning if he's satisfied with the level he's <v Dr. Suchman>got. So by creating this kind of tension, you're really essentially <v Dr. Suchman>making the child dissatisfied with his level of understanding of something. <v Dr. Suchman>And I think this kind of dissatisfaction is very important. <v Dr. Suchman>I think the contented cow idea is it's really a stultifying <v Dr. Suchman>thing in education. <v Rick Madden>This this is real interesting. Are you talking about the kind of feelings that
<v Rick Madden>grow over you when you see the new automobiles as we are now in the show room? <v Rick Madden>And maybe this is maybe it's kind of a possessive thing sometimes? <v Rick Madden>Now, there's nothing bad about this as I see it, but it's it's the desire <v Rick Madden>to have something or to do something or to possess something more than you do <v Rick Madden>at the moment. <v Dr. Suchman>Yeah. Except I really am not referring to it in terms of physical possession of <v Dr. Suchman>something, but in terms of meaning. <v Dr. Suchman>I guess it really does come right down to a desire to understand <v Dr. Suchman>something better. I don't think we like to be stay puzzled. <v Dr. Suchman>It's fun to have a puzzle. In fact, one of the one of the exciting things about <v Dr. Suchman>trying to solve a puzzle is the tension of not having it solved yet. <v Dr. Suchman>That's what keeps us going. That's why we we do jigsaw puzzles or crossword <v Dr. Suchman>puzzles. We enjoy that tension. It's not unpleasant, really unpleasant thing. <v Dr. Suchman>It's a kind of stimulating. <v Rick Madden>Or the same kind of thing that drives you on to finish a book because somewhere you've <v Rick Madden>gotten yourself involved so much in in the story here, the plot or something,
<v Rick Madden>that you just can't lay it down till you find out really what happens there on that last <v Rick Madden>page, murder mystery or whatever it might be. <v Dr. Suchman>Sure. I look at the tension that that a magician creates with a group of children when he <v Dr. Suchman>does a magic trick and the children can't figure it out. <v Dr. Suchman>And they they keep saying, tell us how you did it. <v Dr. Suchman>Show us how, you know, they they enjoy that tension. <v Dr. Suchman>And I think that it's something like that. <v Rick Madden>It would appear then that he is talking about something different and then the mental <v Rick Madden>hygienist. But let's now go back to Springfield and Carl Wybert to see whether there is <v Rick Madden>some further idea there. <v Carl Wybert>I think you've cleared up the problem. <v Rick Madden>We then have two questions that we'll start around the network again. <v Rick Madden>First, we'll go to Circleville. Mr. Goeglein. <v Fred Goeglein>Second question, How closely does this follow the Montessori <v Fred Goeglein>method? <v Dr. Suchman>Well, as I understand it, the Montessori method is has very specific outcomes <v Dr. Suchman>for each exercise that the children are given to do and that
<v Dr. Suchman>it's expected that through interacting with the equipment that is provided <v Dr. Suchman>and I'm taking it now in the very strict sense of the Montessori method, not the perhaps <v Dr. Suchman>the recent modifications, it is expected that by interacting with these materials, <v Dr. Suchman>the child will learn a particular kind of thing. <v Dr. Suchman>And the these outcomes are well known in advance and are expected. <v Dr. Suchman>I feel that inquiry is a much more open ended thing. <v Dr. Suchman>You really don't know where an inquiry is going to lead. <v Dr. Suchman>That's one of the beautiful things about inquiry. <v Dr. Suchman>It's prospective learning. A prospector goes out. <v Dr. Suchman>He doesn't really know what he's going to find. He finds all kinds of things. <v Dr. Suchman>I feel that that that there is the big difference. <v Dr. Suchman>Inquiry is a is a search. A search for expanding, <v Dr. Suchman>meaning a search for more <v Dr. Suchman>ways to interpret one's world and more <v Dr. Suchman>meaningful ways of interpreting his world.
<v Dr. Suchman>And I don't know, I really can't speak in any authoritative sense <v Dr. Suchman>about the Montessori method. But I I don't my understanding of it <v Dr. Suchman>is that its goals are not quite that broad. <v Rick Madden>We'll return to Mr. Goeglein in Circleville. <v Rick Madden>Does he have further comment? <v Fred Goeglein>No further comment at this time. <v Rick Madden>For a very quick 1, we'll go to Kettering. Could you give us your question very quickly? <v Mr. Segments>My teachers need the security of structure, an immediate objective reinforcement to their <v Mr. Segments>feeling of teaching success. <v Mr. Segments>How can we give them this needed security with inquiry teaching? <v Dr. Suchman> I think we have to stop and think of what <v Dr. Suchman>what really makes children feel secure? <v Dr. Suchman>Is it success as defined by some teacher who says you're right or you're wrong? <v Dr. Suchman>Or is it a sense of of autonomy <v Dr. Suchman>and a sense that you can you can create theories by yourself <v Dr. Suchman>and you can also gather data as a way of testing out your own theories?
<v Dr. Suchman>I think that we have defined success too much in terms of <v Dr. Suchman>the system of rewards and the system of right and wrong that we in education have <v Dr. Suchman>defined. And I feel that a child can experience <v Dr. Suchman>his power as a thinking individual outside of that framework. <v Dr. Suchman>He does not need to have authorities telling him that he's right and wrong in order to <v Dr. Suchman>experience his worth and power as a learner. <v Dr. Suchman>As a matter of fact, I feel that that kind of system actually <v Dr. Suchman>fails to give him the greatest sense of power that he could have. <v Rick Madden>Thank you very much, Mr. Reed and Dr. Suchman. <v Rick Madden>This has been a most interesting discussion on the teaching of inquiry. <v Rick Madden>I'll be in touch with each of you tomorrow morning on the beeper phone network. <v Announcer>As an educational feature, The Ohio State University Telecommunications Center <v Announcer>in cooperation with the Ohio State University College of Education continuing Education <v Announcer>Network has just presented another in a series of 2 way discussions.
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Education Network
Teaching By Inquiry
Producing Organization
WOSU Public Media
Ohio State University. College of Education. Radio-Telephone Network
Contributing Organization
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia)
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"These discussion programs, broadcast six times a year to seven school systems on Mondays, eight on Tuesdays, and two on Wednesdays, consist of a speaker, an expert in his field, who gives a twenty-minute presentation and then, during a forty-minute period, answers questions asked over a network of telephone lines."--1967 Peabody Awards entry form.
Broadcast Date
Media type
Producing Organization: WOSU Public Media
Producing Organization: Ohio State University. College of Education. Radio-Telephone Network
AAPB Contributor Holdings
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia
Identifier: 67017edr-arch (Peabody Archive Object ID)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
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Chicago: “Education Network; Teaching By Inquiry,” 1967-11-13, The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 26, 2022,
MLA: “Education Network; Teaching By Inquiry.” 1967-11-13. The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 26, 2022. <>.
APA: Education Network; Teaching By Inquiry. Boston, MA: The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from