How to Use Question of the Day: the Ultimate Guide

Collection of colorful Questions of the Day with text that says "How to Use Question of the Day in reading and math."

A Question of the Day can help build reading and math skills during your morning meeting routine. Keep reading to learn how to use a daily questions with your students.

Question of the Day is one of my favorite kindergarten routines. (But it is great for preschool and preK, too.) My students will love answering the questions and finding out more about their friends. And I will love watching them practice their emerging reading and writing skills without realizing it!

What is the Question of the Day?

In this classroom routine, children respond to a daily written question as they enter the room. With early learners, make your questions follow the same pattern for several days and add picture cues. This makes the questions easier for students to read independently. Use high frequency words that you have recently practiced, including those that are phonetically regular.

You can revisit the responses to the questions during math time to practice data analysis and graphing skills.

Teachers often display the questions in a pocket chart, magnetic white board, or even an oil drip pan. As an alternative, the questions can be written on paper and students can sign their name under their response.

Keep reading to learn the following:

  • Why is Question of the Day important in preschool and kindergarten?
  • What are some good questions of the day?
  • How do you fit Question of the Day in your schedule?

Why is Question of the Day important?

This simple routine helps students with reading, writing and math. Students can build oral language and vocabulary skills with carefully selected questions of the day. They also develop early literacy skills and can practice name writing, if they answer on a sign-in sheet. Finally, revisiting the morning questions during math time allows students to use math vocabulary and analyze data.

Reading

This routine helps students understand concepts of print, such as:

  • print contains meaning
  • print directionality (left to right)
  • print tracking 
  • 1:1 correspondence with oral and written words

This routine can also help build early reading skills. Create and select questions that match the current reading needs of your students. Questions can focus on high frequency words or particular spelling patterns. For very beginning readers, a series of questions that follow a pattern will be helpful. Match the word choices to students’ needs helps them become independent in the routine while building literacy skills.

Writing

Daily questions allow students to read high-frequency words in a purposeful way.

To encourage name writing practice, you can have your students sign their name under their response. This provides purposeful name-writing practice every day. Once your students are experts at writing their first names, mix it up by having them sign in with last names or initials. (Some days, you might want to sit near the sign in sheet to prompt for proper letter formation, as an added bonus.)

Photo of students signing in under Do you like cats or dogs?

Signing in under the question of the day provides purposeful name writing practice

Math

Question of the Day can support math in several ways. For instance, your students can count the number of responses and compare which response had the most/least answers. The student helper can write the number on each side of the chart, even adding the < or > symbols.

If you use a pocket chart to display the questions and responses, the students’ names cards can be lined up to create a graph, introducing graphing skills in a concrete and meaningful way. When the cards are lined up, students can easily answer questions like “Which response had more/less?” and “How many more/less?” You can also incorporate other math vocabulary such as “most” or “least.”

The cards in the pocket chart make an easy-to-read graph

What are some good questions of the day?

One of the trickiest parts about the question of the day is coming up with the perfect (or almost perfect) daily question. Here are a few fun question of the day ideas:

  • connect to things you are learning about (all about me, seasons, holidays, etc.)
  • keep the questions simple and repetitive for younger students
  • start with yes/no questions
  • eventually, branch out to questions with 2-3 choices (Do you like to swing or run?)
  • in kindergarten, your questions might start to follow your phonics progression (CVC words, etc.)

Some sample question patterns include:

If coming up with a daily question feels too overwhelming, I created pre-made questions with you in mind! There are a variety of themes (generic questions, holidays, colors, letters, science, and more.) And they are made for a pocket chart, signing in, or just to place on a ring and read aloud daily. (They do take a bit of time to cut out – but it’s a perfect task for a parent volunteer. Once they’re cut out, you can re-use them year after year.)

Want to try some pre-made questions with your class? Get 30 FREE questions about hobbies and activities here.

When Do Students Answer the Question of the Day?

Teachers use these graphing questions at various times during the day. You can use it as a way for your students to check in and do attendance, so it’s one of their morning jobs. (See my post about soft starts to the day to see how I handle morning jobs.) Your students can then discuss the responses during our morning meeting.

Question of the Day can also be a great start to the math lesson. Students can respond to the question earlier in the day or as they transition to math. Or you can simply revisit the responses during math to practice counting, comparing and graphing.

No matter when you choose to incorporate Question of the Day into your daily routines, I think you will find it to be a rich and rewarding activity for students.

Questions of the Day featured in this post:

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Collection of colorful Questions of the Day with text that says "How to Use Question of the Day in reading and math."

4 thoughts on “How to Use Question of the Day: the Ultimate Guide

  1. Thank you for this great resource! I wanted to start implementing a Question of the Day for my kindergarteners and you have made it so easy. I appreciate it!

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