Thought provoking teachers use inquiry based learning

What is inquiry based learning? How different is it from traditional classroom techniques? Read further in this article how the Australian International School Malaysia (AISM) uses it in their classrooms.

What is inquiry based learning?

The inquiry learning way of working is a learning and teaching method that prioritises students’ questions, ideas and findings. With inquiry learning, students are encouraged to find their own answers by carrying out research, asking questions and sharing ideas. It’s a move away from expecting students to read something and then just learn it.

How does it come to life in a classroom?

Inquiry learning starts exploring any given topic with a provocation or big bang if you like. Something out of the ordinary will be used to get the children and teachers excited and enthusiastic about a topic. It could be, for example, that children are told that parts of an alien spaceship have been found at the school. A discussion of the provocation will then generate sparks, create questions and most importantly engage learners.

The next steps are pre–testing and finding out. It’s at this stage that the students let the teacher know what particularly interests them about this topic and what they want to know more about. Although the inquiry is guided by students, the teacher will still ensure that the students have learnt all the required information on a topic.

Students must then work in groups to sort out what they have learnt. In order to be successful at this stage, they need to meet both previously agreed expectations and deadlines.

In the final stages of the project students will revisit the finding out and sorting stages. Having reflected on what they have found they will present their findings to their teachers and classmates. Then the conclusion of a topic is marked with a celebration of their learning and achievement.

How can parents support inquiry based learning?

There are three main ways in which parents can get involved. If you would like to know how, please read further here.

To find out more about how inquiry based learning and how studying at AISM could benefit your child, visit our website, or see for yourself what the school has to offer and book a tour here. You can also contact a member of the Admissions Team on 03-8949 5000 or email to

About Australian International School Malaysia

Australian International School Malaysia, established for almost 20 years is the most experienced Australian curriculum provider in Malaysia. AISM employs predominantly Australian trained teachers and caters for children from age 3 (Pre-school) to age 18 (Pre-University). Located in a secure gated community in Seri Kembangan, AISM overlooks the picturesque South Lake of The Mines Resort City, a short drive from Kuala Lumpur City Centre.

The School is the first Certified Visible Learning School in the world and has always emphasised on the wellbeing of students. For the past 2 years the school has organised a Wellbeing Week with different wellbeing activities for students and recently has started embedding more of these activities into the classroom schedules on a regular basis. The school also invests in training its teachers in this area and today has more than 20 certified Mindfulness teachers.

This post is sponsored by Australian International School Malaysia.

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