Lasting Memories Through Learning
We have been observing a large number of students becoming more and more involved in their learning this term and very eager to participate in the activities the teachers have prepared. Many of the learning engagements are creating lasting memories for the children that they are not likely to forget and students are really starting to reflect on their own thinking and ask questions about their understanding of concepts, without being prompted by their teachers! This is wonderful to see because it means deep learning is occurring and students are fully engaged with the process of learning, and not just completing activities.
There is a major difference between the engagement of a student busily completing a worksheet without really thinking about it and the student who asks questions about the learning task and reflects on their thinking. The student who is able to engage with learning in this latter example is far more likely to remember their learning and apply their new knowledge to future problem solving and investigations.
In Year One the students have been introduced to visible thinking routines, or strategies to help them ask questions and really ponder or reflect on ideas and information. The Year One students meet with their Year Four buddies every Friday and a wonderful exchange of ideas occurs. The Year Four students share their knowledge of technology with their young buddies and the Year One students show their older friends how to use the visible thinking routines. The resulting learning has been so exciting to observe and students are likely to retain these experiences as lasting memories.
Year Four students have been investigating what life was like for convict children when they were transported to Australia in the late 1700s and early 1800s. The hands-on learning activities associated with the current Year Four unit of inquiry have caused the children to really think about historical and modern day issues.
In Year Six the students are preparing for the PYP Exhibition. This special event is seen as the culmination of the Primary Years Program and is an opportunity for students to share their learning about important world issues. The students have been divided into small groups and each group has a primary teacher as a mentor who will help guide their inquiry and prepare them to present their ideas in an exhibition in Living Faith Chapel at the end of August.
The Year Six students have even raised money through a Spell-a-thon, to pay for the materials they will need to set up their exhibition displays.
The various PYP units of inquiry across the year levels are resulting in learning that creates lasting memories for the students. It is wonderful to see our students thriving in our unique learning environment.