This is a brief example of how inquiry within the PYP exhibition contributes to understanding current global issues.
In the last few months, Colombia has been going through situations related to the culmination of the armed conflict and the end of the war it has suffered through for more than 50 years.
The signing of the peace agreement marked a new stage in the history of the country. It is for this reason that local education standards have required schools to emphasize the content of ‘the chair of peace’ with the aim of having students understand the changes their country is facing.
In our recent PYP exhibition, with the Sharing the planet central idea Different types of individuals with rights and responsibilities make up a society, students inquired into how childhood has been affected by the war not only in Colombia, but also in many countries around the world. Within the learning experiences we wanted to show and reflect the following aspects of those situations: the problem of immigration, racism, inequity, lack of access to education for millions of children, children rights violations and other conflicts. When our students learned about these events, they were able to understand the importance of the Colombia peace agreement and to connect their knowledge with the concepts of diversity and justice. After this exploration, new inquiries came about:
- In what ways have current immigration issues violated children’s rights?
- How can we get involved in actions for supporting children whose rights have been violated?
Those questions encouraged our students to continue investigating in greater depth, not only for Colombia, but also for similar issues occurring around the world.
Exploration and inquiry within the transdisciplinary themes of the PYP support students to become aware of the importance of knowing the reality of their world, starting from their own context and transcending to a global level. This is also an opportunity for us, through our school life, to make our contributions to make the IB mission statement a reality: “create a better world through intercultural understanding and respect“.
Diego Córdoba Prieto has a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Microbiology and a postgraduate degree in International Education and recently obtained the IB certificate in teaching and learning. Diego has been the PYP coordinator in Colegio San Viator for four years and his achievements include the implementation and authorization of the programme in his school making it an IB World School. He is also a board member of AACBI (Asociación Andina de Colegios de Bachillerato Internacional). You can follow him on Twitter @diegocordoba.