Adelaide: Making Sense of Conceptual Inquiry

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Immanuel Primary School

Novar Gardens

Adelaide, SA 5040


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Workshop Description

Teaching Through Inquiry

We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” Einstein

This workshop will explore the pedagogy of conceptual inquiry and provide educators with strategies to capture and maximize student's curiosities, desgining provocations to hook students in, to develop practices for recognizing authentic inquiry and creating learning environments that optimize inquiry. It will examine the inquiry process within a conceptual framework and support teachers in their personal experience of inquiry in action.


This workshop offers a collaborative practical experience for teachers in the context of the natural and built surroundings. The setting offers extensive possibilities for teachers to engage in authentic inquiry using the rich and diverse resources on site and in the local area. Teachers will identify an essential question/wondering that will be conceptually focused. They will plan their inquiry process by identifying resources, engaging with the context of the school and the local community. They will use artefacts and digital resources to extend their understandings of their essential question. The inquiry process will evolve into a short representation of their findings, an explanation of the process of inquiry, their role in this process and reflecting on the application of their experience to their classroom settings.

Setting the Scene

“For me, tension is not stress where you feel overwhelmed and vulnerable; tension is when you feel a need to know and understand.” Kathy Short, Language Arts, Volume 89 Number 2, November 2011

1.Defining & recognizing inquiry

  • Exploring inquiry as a stance

  • Identifying tensions that are significant to them

  • Formulating essential questions/wonderings within a conceptual framework

  • Recognising why it is intriguing and compelling for 'you' as inquirers

2. Understanding an Inquiry Process Model

  • Explore the characteristics and responses within a process model for inquiry

  • Practical strategies for planning, teaching and learning through a process of inquiry

Making it Happen

“Teaching is thinking and learning together in order to push your understanding and in order to challenge yourself to go beyond your current understandings.”

3. Resourcing for Inquiry

  • The significance of primary and secondary resources in inquiry

  • The role of ongoing reflection

  • Building on from student interests and observations

4. A practical application of the inquiry process

  • Power of questioning and observation in the inquiry process

  • Documenting and recording of the inquiry process

  • Gathering evidence to support understandings

Sharing our Inquiries

“Inquiry is an approach to learning that involves a process of exploring the natural or material world, and that leads to asking questions, making discoveries, and rigorously testing those discoveries in the search for new understanding.” Foundations Volume 2

5. Celebration of our inquiry

  • Represent findings and understandings

  • Collaborative reflection on processes experienced

  • Implications for classroom practice – where to from here?

Resources Required:

  • Materials for recording observations, dialogue, evidence throughout the inquiry (iPads, scrapbooks, post-its, digital devices etc.)

  • Access to spaces within school and surrounding community - wear comfortable shoes!


This workshop will be suitable for teachers and leaders interested in deepening their understanding of conceptual inquiry in practice. The practical inquiry will be planned using concepts and conceptual understandings.

It is suggested that, where possible, people attend this workshop as a collaborative group (2 or more), so that throughout the planning for the conceptual inquiry there are opportunities to collaborate and share the implications of practical inquiry back to their classroom practice.

Workshop Timings:

Saturday 25 May

8.30 - 9.00 Introduction to the conference

9.00 - 10.30 Session One

10.30 - 11.00 Break (snacks provided)

11.00 - 1.00 Session Two

1.00 - 1.45 Lunch (lunch provided)

1.45 - 3.45 Session Three

Sunday 26 May

8.30 - 10.30 Session Four

10.30 - 11.00 Break (snacks provided)

11.00 - 12.30 Session Five (conclusion of workshop)


All participants will receive a certificate of participation for the workshop.


Early Bird Fee: US$350

Registration fee after the 25 February 2019:US$380.00

Registration fee after the 25 March 2019:US$410.00

Cancellation Policy

Please note that each workshop will proceed based on participant registration. Innovative Global Education will inform you by 25 April 2019 or earlier if the workshop is to be cancelled. If the workshop is cancelled your full payment will be reimbursed.

Workshop Participation

If Innovative Global Education is informed by 25 April 2019 that a participant is unable to attend the workshop, a full refund will be given. If notification of not being able to participate is after 25 April 2019 IGE will be unable to refund the registration fee.

If, for any reason, a school needs to either transfer a registered participant to another workshop from the workshop registered or change the name of the participant attending a workshop,

Innovative Global Education can make these changes on request from school or participant.

Accommodation Information

The following is suggested accommodation near the school.

Stamford Grand Glenelg


All guests will be entitled to 10% Off the Fully Flexible Room Only Rate at the time of booking on the 24th – 25th May inclusive. The rate on either side of this date will be subject to availability at the time of booking.

Please Note: This discount is not available on hotel packages, promotions or already discounted rates.

Please note that as no rooms are actually being held aside for this group, rates are subject to availability at the time of booking.

To receive this discount, guests will need to Call Reservations and quote the code IGE230519 at the time of booking. Guests will also need to provide a valid credit card number in order for us to confirm their reservation. All bookings will have a 24 hour cancellation policy.

To make a booking guests will need to contact our General Reservations department on the below details: Phone: 08 8376 1222 Email: reservations@sga.stamford.com.au

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Immanuel Primary School

Novar Gardens

Adelaide, SA 5040


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