How to Ask Effective Questions in the Classroom

It is important that the teacher is concerned with asking questions in the classroom to develop the critical thinking of their students. And for this it is recommended, first of all, that they be divergent questions, but what are divergent questions? Well, they are those that admit many possible answers, which favors the participation of a group.

The divergent questions are of an open type, which facilitates a very positive discussion of opinions within the classroom and capable of setting content without the students hardly noticing. Asking these types of questions should not cause problems, but if you still don’t know very well where to start to develop a good list of effective questions for your classroom, do not miss this article, since we will delve into how to ask the best effective questions to successful students.





Ways to Ask Students Effective Questions

There are question formulas that involve a type of brain reaction and that it is good to master for the proper functioning of classroom dynamics. For example, look at the thinking that might be generated in students’ brains by asking some divergent key questions such as the following:


  • What do you think about…?

This type of question activates critical thinking and the best time to ask it is after an event has been reported. Students will not answer immediately because their brain is connecting with their experience and knowledge , so it is always important to give some extra time for them to reflect. The strategy that many people would use when faced with this type of question is to request that it be repeated (which is usually an unconscious fact), because doing so helps us have that extra time to reflect on the answer.


  • Why do you think that?

This is a question that helps the student to introspect his own values and compare them with established social values. The student will learn to argue, something vital for academic development, and the main benefit of this type of question.


  • Can you contribute something else?

This is a question that invites the student to express their ideas without fear , which is very important because of how often it happens. Most introverted students almost always have very good ideas to contribute, but they do not intervene to do so due to lack of self-confidence. When we ask these types of questions, we give students the opportunity to reinforce their confidence and express themselves according to their own convictions. It is important for the teacher not to judge the possible answers or to allow others to do so.


  • What would you do after you get that result?

This type of question helps students make predictions based on assumed facts. It is a way of developing planning thinking , ideal for inviting the student to make changes in the present according to what he himself reflects on the future.


  • Are there any questions you want to ask?

Not only should students answer questions be encouraged, but also their ability to learn to ask them. In this way they are given the opportunity to question their own thoughts and open up to new insights.





Through effective questions teachers can achieve many important things capable of changing the lives and the way of facing the world of the students. It may seem silly, but asking questions of this type not only helps to eliminate barriers of shame and insecurity , but also allows us to deepen our thoughts and be able to better analyze the information (by wanting to find the correct answers ) and also to express it with greater guarantees of success.

Therefore, effective and divergent questions can be implemented in the classroom on a daily basis (related to the subject being taught at the time) and become very useful assessment tools for the teacher, not only in terms of what has been learned from the contents of the course, but also in terms of the tools available to students to deal with all this.


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