BUILDING AN INQUISITIVE MIND

Middle Primary: Primary 3 and Primary 4

At Middle Primary, the focus is on developing an inquisitive mind in each student. This disposition will motivate them to ask questions so as to deepen their knowledge and enhance their learning.

Developing Critical Thinkers through the Explicit Teaching of Thinking skills

Being critical thinkers, students will have the innate desire to question and explore possibilities, make informed decisions and solve problems.

The school uses a dual-pronged approach in teaching thinking skills:

Incorporating Thinking Routines in the curriculum

Students will be able to establish patterns of thinking which they can apply in all situations by learning and applying the thinking routines in carefully designed lessons in the various subjects. The thinking routines encourage students to explore possibilities and generate ideas, exercise sound reasoning and decision-making and manage complexities and ambiguities.

For example,

  • “See-Think-Wonder” is used in Mathematics lessons to help students interpret the information given in a word problem and explore ways of solving the problem. 
  • “Think-Puzzle-Explore" is used in Science to help students develop their own questions for investigation. 

Teaching Thinking Skills through Varied Pedagogies

Key pedagogies in the various academic subjects are used to help guide students through the thinking stages. For example, at Primary 3 and 4, oral and written packages are used in Mother Tongue languages to build up students’ reading and writing skills. The packages use mind-mapping strategies and thinking questions to help guide students through the thinking stages of analysis and prediction. This helps to build in them a sense of curiosity to make inferences from data.

The following are key pedagogies used in the various subjects to help students acquire thinking strategies that develop Higher Order Thinking (HOT) skills:

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Annotation (incorporating the 5W1H strategy) 
(English and Mother Tongue Languages)
Annotation (incorporating the 5W1H strategy) helps students  analyse , evaluate and Interpret  information  given in the text.
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Heuristic strategies, for example: draw a  model / diagram , guess and check, look for a pattern, work  backwards , are used in  problem solving  and taught progressively across the levels. Through the use of these strategies, students are developed in the HOT skills such as classifying, comparing,  analysing , identifying patterns and relationships, reasoning and drawing logical conclusions.
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Inquiry Based Approach (Science) 
Inquiry-based learning enables students to investigate, analyse and deduce a hypothesis to form a conclusive answer. In addition, TICKLE (Topic, Important Information, Concept, Keywords, Link, and Evaluate) & TCA (Topic, Concept, and Application) are strategies to guide students to analyse, connect and apply appropriately. 

Catering to Different Abilities through Differentiated Instruction


Differentiated Instruction provides for customisation of the curriculum to enable students to be stretched at a pace they are comfortable with. When students have a sense of achievement, they will be more willing to venture out of their comfort zone. In their pursuit of continuous improvement, students challenge themselves to know and understand beyond what they see at face value. For example, at P3 and P4, the higher progressing students will join the Let’s Speak Well programme to enhance their confidence in public speaking and communicating effectively with others. The programme provides public speaking opportunities such as interacting with the public during school events e.g. Open House. The differentiated programme helps give them exposure, ignites curiosity and instills the students' the natural disposition to question what they see.

Some examples of differentiated programmes which we offer, are as follows:

- Let’s Speak Well Programme for selected P2 to P4 students (EL)
- Math Olympiad Training for selected P3 to P6 students
- Differentiated Instruction for EL Composition writing
- Differentiated worksheets for Mathematics

Experiential Learning opportunities such as Learning Journeys provide authentic experiences to engage students, arouse their curiosity through reflection and develop in them an inquisitive mind.

For example, the art curriculum is designed using the Seeing, Expressing, Appreciating (SEA) approach. Students are exposed to different local and world artists and a variety of art forms such as 2D, 3D, Design and Digital Media. Differentiated instruction (DI) and thinking routines such as See-Think-Wonder are infused into the curriculum. Learning journeys are conducted, such as the P3 learning journey to the Singapore River to study art sculptures and the P4 learning journey to the Singapore Art Museum.