In the move toward a ‘personalized learning’ environment in British Columbia few things could be more relevant and pertinent than the act of inquiry (or inquiry-based learning). And while many of my teacher-librarian colleagues are leaders in their elementary schools, those of us who work in a very rigid, performance test-driven environment here is where the real challenge may lie–introducing, developing, and maintaing a culture of inquiry that is pervasive and predominant.
Recently, the BCTF released a poster version of the BCTLA’s Points of Inquiry (POI) document. One of the document’s creators, my insightful and brilliant colleague, Moira Ekdahl, posed the question: “Where’s the computer?”

Naturally, I started to wonder why such a key element to research in the 21st century is missing on the poster…

Surely there isn’t a student in this province (or in the western world for that matter) that doesn’t head to the computer for any type of research. Is this a mistake (an obvious omission)? Was it done purposefully?
Perhaps the lack of a ‘device’ helps to remind us that technology is only one method with which we put our research action plan into motion. It truly is only a tool or an avenue to help in the inquiry process. Critical thinking, inquiry-based approaches, media literacy, and digital citizenship play a far more significant role (than we actually think or teach) in the current milieu of research skills.
 
It should be noted that while the BCTLA created the Points of Inquiry document, the poster creation was done ‘in house’ by the BCTF design department with little (if any) input from the POI creators. By all accounts, an avoidable mistake.

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