Instructional Practice

Effective Practices

HOT Question

PL-1, I-3, I-8



The Beginner’s Guide to Understanding Rigor (Blackburn, 2012) states that, “As you design lessons that incorporate more rigorous opportunities for learning, you will want to consider the questions that are embedded in the instruction. Higher level questioning is an integral part of a rigorous classroom. Look for open-ended questions, ones that are at the higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy (analysis, synthesis). It is also important to look at how teachers respond to student questions.”

Quick Tips

Try asking questions that require students to explain how components work together or affect one another.

Allow students opportunities to interact and listen to their peers as they share their thinking in small groups.

Good questioning requires planning since you want the class to engage in multiple activities or performance tasks before they can come up with an answer. 


Barbara Blackburn's Rigor


Other Strategies

Socratic Seminar

The purpose of a Socratic Seminar is to reach a deeper understanding of the concepts in a text. Participants systematically question and examine issues and principles related to a particular topic covering different points-of-view. Seminars are conducted as a group conversation and this format supports students in constructing meaning through disciplined analysis, interpretation, listening, and participation (The National Paideia Center, n.d.).