QAR (Question-Answer Relationships)

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QAR in literacy

QAR focuses on how to ask effective questions for exploring a text and connecting it to student knowledge.  Questions are broken down into 4 categories:

  • Right there-Answers can be found easily in the text through exact quotation or summary of single sentences.

  • Think and search-Answer are in the text but require the student to gather details from various parts of the text.

  • Author and you-Answers require the reader to make connections between the text and their previous experiences.

  • On my own-Answers are completely outside of the text and relate to the reader’s personal experience.

This strategy aids students in developing a range of questions and understanding how to look at questions to be able to investigate for answers to posed questions.

QAR in music

While music does not have the text directed sorts of questions that can be found in traditional text, QAR can be used for interpreting what the music directly tells the performer and what needs to be inferred.  Music presumes that the performer brings certain interpretative elements to the music that are not notated in the text.  The QAR questions function in this capacity as follows:

  • Right there-The music informs the musician of exactly how to interpret a passage (e.g. a crescendo stretching over 4 beats)

  • Think and search-The music has a specific markings at numerous points iwthin a passage that all apply to a given measure (e.g. p is written at m. 9, cresc. is marked at m. 10, and ff is written at m. 12, indicating that the passage should start at p with a crescendo that continues to ff by m. 12)

  • Author and you-The music specifies a general marking that requires interpretation based on knowledge of style and experience (e.g. allargando would imply different interpretations in a Mahler symphony from a Haydn string quartet)

  • On my own-No markings are in the music, but there is an implied responsibility of the musician to expressively play

QAR prepares the students to think about the demands asked by the music and apply their musical knowledge and skills appropriately.