Do they understand why well enough to move on, introducing questions that are hinge

What is a question that is hinge?


This is usually a brief item of formative assessment which allows the teacher to know whether it is appropriate to go on, to briefly recap, or totally reteach, a concept before moving on – what Dylan Wiliam calls the most crucial decision an instructor has to make on a basis that is regular. Then the next activity may well fail for many students – because the concepts build one on another if you get this wrong and some students have not underst d. Then engagement will slip and time will be wasted – although this is far less likely I suspect if you get this wrong and reteach pointlessly!

Construction of a hinge question

It is an art – Wiliam emphasises the amount of time and collaboration which adopts doing it properly – but also the worth of this process in offering information that is useful producing durable questions and tasks.1) You have to be able to get the information on it very quickly – Dylan Wiliam suggests that ideally students should respond within one minute and teachers be able to view and interpret responses within fifteen Garland escort reviews seconds (2011, p.101) from them there and then and be able to understand and act. You’ll need a snapshot, maybe not an essay.

2) You must know why pupils have actually provided the answer they’ve provided, from their solution (without entering questioning students – which takes up t much time) – so it must be impossible to achieve proper responses utilizing an incorrect thought process.

A series of step-rules which I found a useful device were explained by Wiliam (2007) therefore we) interpret reactions II) just reach an answer utilizing one thought process ( not need two answers that the same thought process could trigger) III) know which guidelines resulted in which response IV) have actually every guideline result in a answer that is different

I’ve subsequently desired to spell out these steps in greater detail here, put together and talked about some situations right here making two collections that are large.


Excited by the style, we resolved to introduce questions that are hinge all my training. I wasn’t clear enough on areas of misconception to immediately formulate four or five credible incorrect responses, based around different ‘cognitive rules’ – so I based my questions on post-its collected at the end of a lesson summarising the key point of the lesson – and then used this to formulate a new hinge question for the following day as I found.

At first we found this kept me personally with way t many responses that are possible. I attempted grouping them. Where I happened to be unable to group them, we provided all of them associated with options feasible – then narrowed them straight down based on student reactions the very first time I taught the course. Some situations associated with questions I arrived up with are here.


Firstly and most considerably, we learned much more about the mistakes students had been making. For instance, having taught students the main causes of fl ding, I became surprised to view a) global warming come up as one suggestion (even though I had said it exacerbated fl ding, not caused it), b) 1 / 2 of one class agree that it in fact was a cause and c) some pupils whom agreed it wasn’t explained ‘because you stated so last lesson’ – they had not underst d the reasons why. Another highlight was the amount of pupils who thought that Muslims were g d learners into the dark Ages they‘tried their best’ and so on… and I realised that students had overlaid what they had been taught about learning well onto scholarship in the Middle Ages – irrespective of the historical events that actually t k place because‘they studied hard. On the topic that is same we unearthed a recurrent belief that comparing Muslim and Christian mathematical knowledge into the dark Ages into the favour for the Muslims had been wrong – in responses dictated by students’ own religious opinions.

Had we not ‘sought error’ in this way, I would not have been aware of these, understandable – misconceptions, nor would i have already been in a position to correct them.

Next, it slowed teaching considerably – certainly, a few lessons had been brought very nearly to a standstill as I kept attempting to talk through pupil misconceptions. This risked disengaging… and reinforces the importance of just trying to change two or three things at once. With additional experience I discovered to predict student misconceptions and produce learning activities around them, to know when you should move on using the group and help individuals later and, most powerfully, to stimulate students to describe to each other or debate with each other and work at a conclusion. At the easiest level, it involves wearing down concerns into sub-questions, allowing students to isolate the faculties of individual lessons.

Limits and Problems

The slowing of classes, talked about above.Students should be taught what you are doing – in order to avoid any stigma to getting ‘wrong answers’ – and to understand why you care a great deal about their responses.

Understanding where students are going wrong – exactly – requires deeper thought than I had previously provided to this issue. But, I would personally state most of these are ‘operational dilemmas’ rather than real dilemmas.