The importance of “why?”

The question “why?” is vital for us as teachers.

For students to ask teachers.

I try to keep this in the back of my mind at all times – if a child was to ask me “why are we doing this?” I should have a decent answer. “Just because” doesn’t cut it. Nor does “because I said so.” If I can reply that it is going to further their learning in a particular way, then this is at least a start towards ensuring all learning in the class is relevant and meaningful.

For students to ask themselves and others.

An awful lot has been said on this subject and we are all well aware that schools can systematically suck the creativity and curiosity out of children. We must ensure that our students question the world around them and are allowed retain their natural curiosity.

For teachers to ask themselves and their fellow educators.

We must also question our own teaching and the ideas posed by others to incorporate in our classroom practice.

  • Why am I doing this? How does it further the students’ learning, capture their interest, motivate them or help to instill confidence in them as a learner? Just because I have always done something, does that make it the best way?
  • Why is this technology considered valuable? Is it the best way for my students to learn?
  • Why should I adopt this approach to teaching and learning? Will it improve student outcomes?

The importance of critical evaluation and questioning is imperative in successfully educating and learning.


One thought on “The importance of “why?”

  1. I think taking the time to acknowledge that the critical reflection is going on is important too..knowing we are actually deliberately reflecting! Most teachers as a matter of course reflect during their teaching but only a small majority can identify (and record) the time and thoughts happening. Unless we are conscious about the action no deliberate change will occur.

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