The first stage of inquiry is engaging students. This step creates a desire to learn more about the topic, introduces students to a guiding question, and checks for background knowledge.
Structured inquiry is designed so that the teacher leads the entire inquiry process. In the engagement phase, the teacher creates and provides an open-ended question to students. To add student voice to this, the teacher could show students an image, video, demonstration, or text. Then, have students develop questions. Ultimately the teacher will choose the question that students will investigate.
Controlled and Guided Inquiry
Controlled and guided inquiry are designed so that students have a bit more flexibility. In the engagement phase of controlled and guided inquiry, the teacher will provide open-ended questions, and students can choose a question they are interested in exploring. To add student voice to this, the teacher could show students an image, video, demonstration, or text and have students develop questions. The teacher takes that list and picks a few questions, and students can choose which questions they are interested in.
Free inquiry gives students the most voice and choice. In this version, students design their own questions based on a topic given by the teacher or, if it is something like a passion project or a genius hour, any question the student is interested in finding an answer for.