The Four Tools —Research
If you want the highest activity by each learner, what is your go-to tool? It’s research. When we hear the word “research,” many of us may picture poring over books or websites or huddled in a lab for hours. Sure, research can be that. But in education it can be quite short.

Research is the fourth and final tool in our educator’s toolbox. Past issues of Teach the Word have dealt with the first three tools in the adult educators’ toolbox: Lecture, Question/Answer, and Group Work. In this issue Prof. Tom Kock helps us see the value and options of tool #4, Research.

Professor Thomas Kock serves at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in Mequon, Wisconsin, as professor of education and Old Testament, and the director of Grow in Grace. He previously served as a home missionary and pastor in Johnson City, Tennessee.
They never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah. Acts 5:42
Adult Education: Additum
Watch and Learn: Study Shows How Brain Gains Knowledge Through Observation

How did she find the answer to the question? What approach did he use when someone challenged what he believed? How did they interact with the strangers when inviting them to a church event? Opportunities to observe others can help a Christian learn about handling problems, witnessing, doing Bible research, or a number of other topics. This article from Caltech gives a glimpse at some benefits from observation.

Teaching Toolbox
25 Ways for Teaching Without Talking: Presenting Students With New Material in Theory Lessons

Our lead article this month encourages us to employ research in our Bible studies. Geoff Petty, author and expert on teaching methods, put together a document that has numerous examples of active learning strategies. It is from his website. Beginning on page 5 of the document, a Bible study leader could glean some suggestions how to include research in a Bible study

Curriculum Connection

God blesses us with our church, and he blesses us with our government. What are their roles? What dangers lie ahead if we don’t keep them separate? Professor Tom Kock’s unique nine-lesson, small group Bible study booklet examines each chapter of Professor Daniel Deutschlander’s book Civil Government: God's Other Kingdom . Each lesson follows an Objective—Background—Group Discussion—Digging Deeper outline with brief questions at the end to encourage deep and fascinating group discussions about God’s blessings of church and state and the dangers of failing to keep them separate.

Teaching Tip

When beginning a new study or new topic, solicit feedback from learners to find out what they already know or need to know to understand what you want them to learn. Distribute a brief questionnaire about the upcoming topic, or ask for a show of hands or thumbs-up to gauge what’s already known.
  Teach the Word  is a collaboration of Northwestern Publishing House,
Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, and WELS Discipleship.