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Sarah Gibbons Middle School: Guided Inquiry

Guided Inquiry Design

Stages of Inquiry

Open - Define the Topic of the Project

Immerse - Students get the BIG picture about the theme to be studied

Explore - Students build background knowledge on their topic

Identify - Students create a research question to focus on their project

Gather - Students collect information from a variety of sources

Create - Students put all their ideas together to create their project

Share - Students present their ideas to others and communicate what they have learned

Evaluate - Students reflect on their learning

Research Tools

Criteria For Writing a Guiding Question


  1. The topic must interest you.

  2. Start the question with “How” or “What”

  3. Use strong verbs such as:  Affect. Impact, illustrate, motivate, influence, and communicate

  4. Is your question can be answered in a word or a sentence, it is not a guiding question.

  5. Goldilocks Rule: Can’t be too big or too small, must be just right.



  • What’s the best way to stop the flu at our school?

  • How can we design a better lunch menu for our school?