Another dot in the blogosphere?

Answering before questioning

Posted on: August 23, 2018

Is there anything wrong with providing an answer before asking a question?

The tweet above by a newspaper typifies what some teachers do: Not just answering their own questions, but answering before questioning.

This might seem efficient, but it is not effective in nurturing learners who can think creatively and critically.

Answering before questioning creates these expectations and habits:

  • Do not think, just wait for the teacher
  • The teacher will provide
  • There is only one right or desired answer

Providing one or more answers before asking questions is like providing a solution before identifying a problem. There is no purpose or context. There is no authenticity. There is no reason to create meaning.

I have said this before and I will say it again: We need to rely less on a pedagogy of answers and more on a pedagogy of questions.

3 Responses to "Answering before questioning"

[…] – The Online Citizen: : After the glamour from Crazy Rich Asians, let us remember that 15% of Singaporeans make up the “unseen poor” – The Independent: Michael Jackson’s daughter slammed and called a “hypocrite” for being on Harper’s Bazaar Singapore cover – The Straits Times: How S’pore is tackling plastic bag problem – Asian Correspondent: What did Kofi Annan mean to Southeast Asia? – Another dot in the blogosphere?: Answering before questioning […]


Dr. Tan, I’v left a message in about 2 weeks ago on your blog and Instagram but I am afraid that you haven’t check them both. Can you please check? Thank you.


I cannot find your comment in my WordPress dashboard. I just read your Instagram message request.

Sorry for the delay. I do not receive Instagram message request alerts. Will message back via that platform.


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