Questioning in the classroom

Great questioning in the classroom (and beyond) promotes deep thinking, helping students connect and elaborate on ideas.  Great questioning to assess thinking helps teachers plan and adapt their teaching to respond to what assessment tells them.  Teachers ask questions every lesson, every day – so it’s important to make sure that teachers and students are asking the right questions to move learning forward.

Kate Jones, Senior Associate for Teaching and Learning, interviews teacher, senior leader and author Michael Chiles about questioning in the classroom – Dimension 4, Element 4.3 of the Model for Great Teaching.

In this episode:

  • Michael explains why questioning hasn’t always received the attention and focus it deserves but why it should be a priority for all teachers and schools.
  • Mini white boards and cold calling techniques are explored, as well as discussing the role of ‘hands up’ questioning strategies in the classroom.
  • The purpose of questioning is explored.
  • Michael offers advice about the design, use and implementation of multiple choice questions and how the data provided can be insightful and helpful for teachers.
  • Question design and delivery is discussed, both written and oral.
  • Kate asks Michael, how carefully should teachers plan the questions they ask in class.
  • Finally, how can teachers support students to encourage reluctant learners to participate and ask questions in the lesson.


To enhance your use of questioning, look out for Michael’s book and check out the Great Teaching Toolkit Questioning course.

All of our podcasts, including our previous interview with Michael on feedback, can be found in our podcast archive, and we have a host of free eBooks, videos and webinars for you in our Resource Library.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.