The HSN Inquiry Grant is intended to support healthy living inquiry-based learning experiences with students. This involves working through an inquiry process with students, to engage them in healthy living through asking meaningful questions.
There are 3 central components of the Inquiry Grant that need to be addressed in your application:
- Exploratory learning
- Inquiry is learner-centered, dynamic, and reflective in nature. The inquiry process is about encouraging exploration, curiosity, and student ownership in the learning experience, while also strengthening the educator’s professional practice.
- Engage in continuous reflection. Reflection deepens learning, and the process of inquiry is a great way to engage students in both their health and their education.
- There are different approaches to inquiry and we encourage you to utilize an approach that is most relevant for you and your students. Two approaches to inquiry that we encourage, and are reflective of one another, are the Healthy Schools Process and the Spiral of Inquiry.
- The Healthy Schools Process* is connected to the Healthy Schools BC Learning Framework and is the process that the Healthy Schools BC Resource Guide for Teaching and Learning walks through. This cyclical process supports schools to gather evidence, focus and plan, gather support, take action, and evaluate and reflect. Click here to learn more.
- Spiral of Inquiry*: The spiral of inquiry provides the framework for schools to be curious about and scan for what is going on for their learners, to develop a focus for their team inquiry, to explore hunches about what is leading to this situation (good and bad) for learners, to identify areas for new learning, to take action, and to check how much difference these new actions are making to learners.
- Student engagement
- Students should be engaged in the inquiry process. They can help choose the focus of the inquiry, and/or be involved in implementing, evaluating and reflecting on it.
- The Inquiry Grant is intended to support student-centered actions, or projects which engage students in a meaningful way; we are looking for projects co-created WITH students, instead of those done FOR students.
- Use of evidence
*These two inquiry processes are connected in that they encourage the use of evidence, focus and plan, take action and evaluate to check to know if the inquiry made a difference for students.
Before filling out your Inquiry Grant application form, take some time to consider the context of your school and the key issues for students in your classroom and/or school. This step of scanning students for their perspectives on what it means to be healthy is a great way to promote student engagement in the application process and build on previous healthy school projects, while supporting you to reflect on how your activity has influenced students’ health and learning at the end of your project.
Remember… powerful inquiry questions begin with “why” “how” or “what,” rather than questions that can be answered with “yes” or “no.”
Additionally, these resources can support your understanding of inquiry-based learning, and assist with planning, implementing and evaluating your project.
Examples & Resources
The Inquiry Grant can be used to explore a wide variety of questions ensuring the grant meets the unique needs of your school/classroom. We encourage you to read stories on the Healthy Schools BC Stories Map to learn about some of the inquiry learning experiences and their questions BC schools have been asking. A few examples include:
- Who Am I?: “To what extent will understanding the influence of our environment as part of who we are help us develop a sense of self? Who am I?”
- Recycling and Healthy Alternatives: “Will verbal and physical weekly education of children on recycling reduce the amount of prepackaged foods and increase healthy snack alternatives at school and home?”
- School Connectedness - Healthy Schools Assessment: “In what ways can we improve the culture of health and wellness in our school community so that everyone feels that they can achieve, that they belong and they feel connected to others?”
- Effects of Water: “How would having clean, accessible drinking water improve the school environment and student learning?”
- Dental Unit - Learning to Brush: “What information and activities can the class do at school to encourage the students to brush their teeth more frequently and to eat healthier food to take care of their teeth and bodies?”
You can also see a list of 2014-2015 Healthy Living Inquiry Grant questions here.
Another helpful element to consider when applying for the Inquiry Grant is how your inquiry will affect the wider school environment, and/or how it will enhance school connectedness.
- School connectedness is about creating a school community where everyone feels safe, seen, heard, supported, significant and cared for. Research on school connectedness is strong and consistent; students who feel connected to school do better academically and are healthier.
- Consider asking students – Can you name TWO adults in this school who believe you will be a success in life?
- Other questions to consider: will your inquiry build on previous initiatives within the school, or will it create the potential for future initiatives to blossom? How could others within the school community support your inquiry? How could this inquiry connect to other healthy school initiatives? How will this inquiry enhance relationships within the school and foster feelings of connectedness for students?
- We invite you to learn more about school connectedness here.
Applications now closed.