Design and innovation provides solutions for personal, local and global issues
Issues & Innovations
An outline of our first week:
Highlights of the week:
As a grade 5 team, we were organized! Although this is our fifth time around the block, we are once again trying out new themes and basically starting from scratch. This year it it has felt great though. Our experiences from the past are finally starting to pay off and we planned the absolute best launch week. By the time we got to Friday, kids were excited and buzzing to let us know their final Exhibition issues.
I think there is only one thing I would change about the week. I do feel like I/we did a lot of talking. Between going over expectations during role of the students, and having students listen to the CISB community about taking action, I felt like our students did a lot of sitting and listening. In the end, I do think it was valuable and they generally enjoyed and absorbed, but I'm sure a few of our language learners felt overwhelmed. Sitting and listening will be worth it when our process starts and everyone has a clear understanding of what is going on.
Role of the Student:
This is how role of the student went down
The action workshop was meant to inspire. Every year we find that taking action is the hardest part of the inquiry cycle for the kids to complete. Ideas generally bounce between putting posters up around the school and trying to raise money for some issue or cause. The idea was to show kids that action can be taken in many many different ways. We invited a few guests for the CISB community to come in and share examples of actions they have taken in their own lives. We hoped for the students to recognize that action is usually attached to genuine care and interest for an issue, and that there is no one right way to do it.
We especially wanted to highlight the fact that there are 6 types of action: doing, being, saying, having, feeling and thinking.
On day 2 of the action workshop, we watched a video about a young boy named Boyan Slat who took action on the issue of ocean pollution. We took notes on all of the different ways that he was able to take action. We continued on with brainstorming ideas for other types of action that could be taken for a variety of issues.
Choosing an Issue
The final step of the week for students was to choose an issue that they wanted to investigate further for the Exhibition. About 6 weeks before the Exhibition process started we began by asking students to think about the passions, interest and issues they were interested in. Teachers presented one new idea and each week, a passion or interest to them, and students had to choose 1 as well. By the end of the 6 weeks, students all throughout the grade had a handful of passions and issues they were willing to investigate more. We did mini lessons on turning passions into issues, and in the end, most kids were able to identify something they wanted to pursue further.
The entire grade 5 team is excited to get started next week with some Tuning in and Finding out!
Time is flying!
This week, students worked hard to finish up and make sense of the research they had been conducting for the past two weeks. Our end of week goal was to have each student present at a mid point check-in, the "Think Tank". The Think Tank was an opportunity to share and sort out some of their biggest take aways from their first couple of weeks, and was done in small groups so students were able to talk and offer feedback following each presentation. Students had the freedom to choose how they wanted to present, and the only requirements were to share what they were proud of and and ways in which they had grown. Most students presented a mixture of research, aha!-moments, key concept connections and plans for next-steps. Most students are now ready for the next step in Exhibition, and will be focusing this week or going further. For most, this will be some form of data collection or deciding that they need to ask more questions, and for others, this will be time to start making a plan for taking action.