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Grade 2 unit on Weather

The goal in creating this video about the Grade 2 Weather unit of inquiry is to inform the parents and the great community of the Washington International School Primary Division as to how a PYP unit of inquiry is collaboratively developed. It was also aimed to further understanding of how our combined library and instructional technology partnership supports inquiry, while empowering students to use digital technology to share their understanding. Another important aspect of this video is the cross-disciplinary learning taking place including art, science, math and language arts.

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The power of teacher neutrality

Be neutral about the answer but still help to guide the learning: Being neutral does not mean doing nothing. The teacher has the very important role of figuring out how to help the students arrive at the answer. For younger students, that could mean planning an experiment, suggesting to go ask “experts” in the school or in the community, or finding a book or video to share with the class. For older students, that could mean turning it back to them. “How can we find out?” “Who can we ask?” “Where can we learn more about this?”

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Jeff Thompson Award recipient: Samantha Cook

The study was provoked by my experiences as a workshop leader – I was curious about how much of what was learned in workshops made a long term difference to teachers’ practice, and what the other factors were that helped influence their development. I reviewed the literature on effective professional development and discovered that there is much evidence to indicate the limitations of workshops, and a growing focus on context-embedded, collaborative opportunities to develop. My research questions aimed to discover which Professional Development (PD) opportunities were considered most effective, but also how much change practitioners felt was required to become an effective PYP teacher.

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What should we truly be assessing in PE?

As a PE practitioner, there is nothing that gives me more of a charge than seeing a student breakthrough and accomplish something they never thought that they could or to improve upon their level of performance through hard work and determination. The image posted below is one that a friend recently put up on Facebook. I love the picture and, to me, it is representative of all of the great qualities, character traits and positive thinking that we hopefully hold in high regard in our PE programs.

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Classroom globetrotting

After discovering last year that 15 different languages were spoken in her classroom, Dottie Price, Year 3 PYP teacher, created Language Fridays: a whistle-stop tour around the world in half an hour. Every Friday afternoon, 30 minutes were set aside for students to volunteer to teach their mother tongue to classmates. In the first week, seven students taught Farsi, Russian, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Bengali, Telugu, and German. There were more volunteers for the next week, and each week thereafter. Students got more creative over time by sharing songs, dances, stories, clothing, video clips and artifacts. Price took a guest spot in the line-up a couple of times, sharing some German, Italian and a song in Sinhala.

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Come to our conference session!

The session will be held on Friday 20 March 2015 from 16:50 to 17:50 (the time is subject to change – check the final programme for time and room allocation). We hope to see many of you there! These discussions will help fuel our thinking during this time of programme review.

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