Self-questioning – asking yourself questions in order to obtain a deeper understanding or to check that a text was understood.
Self-questioning can be employed in almost any learning activity including writing, viewing, speaking, creating, solving and investigating. However, it is most commonly associated with reading comprehension – understanding what a text was about. Self-questioning is a metacognitive skill commonly used by literacy teachers to improve reading comprehension. Students who struggle with reading comprehension are often passive readers; they can read and understand individual words but struggle to connect words and sentences to make meaning. Passive readers don’t visualise what they read and fail to connect details to people, places and things. Students who struggle with comprehension will read a passage from a text and not be able to recall key points or details. Comprehension is a common issue that teachers face in all grades and subjects. One strategy that is known to be effective is self-questioning.
Self-questioning helps passive readers to become active readers by directing their reading. During and after reading a passage, students ask themselves questions. There are 2 main types of questions. Firstly, students ask themselves general questions (such as whether they understand what the passage is about). Secondly, they ask themselves specific questions (for example, about where the passage is set, who the characters are and what happened). Teachers can direct students to read for specific information to answer these questions. High-achieving students and competent readers employ active-reading strategies such as self-questioning; they are continually reflecting on their understanding and employing strategies such as re-reading as a result.
Passive readers don’t visualise what they read and fail to connect details to people, places and things.
Self-questioning helps passive readers to become active readers by directing their reading. During and after reading a passage, students ask themselves questions.
PQ4R is an acronym for a popular method of self-questioning:
You may have noticed that PQ4R incorporates many of the reading strategies examined earlier in this book – ‘preview’ for example is similar to ‘prediction’ and ‘using cues’. Self-questioning is very effective as a metacognitive skill. Independent and self-directed learners use self-questioning before, during and after an activity. As with all metacognitive skills, self-questioning needs to be explicitly taught to students. Regular opportunities for practise need to be provided in order to encourage automaticity.
Adam Green is an advisor to government, a registered teacher, an instructional designer and a #1 best selling author. He is completing a Doctor of Education and was previously head of department for one of the country’s largest SAER (students at educational risk) schools. Adam is managing director of ITAC, an accredited training provider for thousands of teacher aides every year.
Source: Teaching Skills and Strategies for the Modern Classroom: 100+ research-based strategies for both novice and experienced practitioners. Amazon #1 best seller in the category of Classroom Management.
The introductory teacher aide course covering all the basics of working in a school.LEARN MORE
The industry standard TA course with a focus on disabilities and disorders.LEARN MORE
Save time and money by completing ITAC's popular Teacher Aide Combo.LEARN MORE
Be sure to ask your provider for a sample of their resources and assessments before enrolling.LEARN MORE
For the CHC40221 Certificate IV in School Based Education Support.
Interest free plans from $40 - no hidden fees, includes all resources.
From $50 - courses subsidised by the Queensland government.
Friendly trainers with years of experience in local schools.
We visit every learner on placement to help improve your practice.
A 30-day no obligation period so you can be sure the course is for you.
Supported, self-paced distance mode or class from 1 day per week.
Learn industry best practice and research-based pedagogy.
An established provider with more than 5000 happy graduates.
The Institute of Teacher Aide Courses is the go-to provider for nationally recognised teacher aide courses. Around 1 in 2 students choose to study Australia's most popular TA course with ITAC.
Enquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org | 1300 858 191 (main info line) | Perth: (08) 6555 2992 | Brisbane: (07) 3188 0299
Head Office (WA): Unit 38, 12 Junction Blvd. COCKBURN CENTRAL WA 6164
Queensland (by appointment only): S16, Level 18, 324 Queen St. Brisbane QLD 4000
© 2021 Institute of Teacher Aide Courses | RTO 52215 | ABN 38 149 840 611