For those of you who missed this morning’s presentation, the students did a wonderful job! This was followed by a parent’s perspective and a question and answer session. Here is the slideshow and below you’ll find the script (which the students wrote themselves). Also, below the student script you will find a short video from last year’s exhibition to give you a sense of where this journey is taking us.
Slide 1: Julia and Amit
Good morning! I’m Julia with, Amit, Anoushka, Olivia, Tom, Alex, Christian, Leonid, Leonardo, Ava,Natasha and Katya. We know you know all the G5 teachers, but we would like to introduce Ms. Tasha Cowdy the PYP Coordinator. Today we are here to show you the process we went through to find our passions and what we are going to go through to be successful in the PYP Exhibition. Also, we will be showing you how to help your child during the exhibition.
Slide 2: Christian
Exhibition is a project in which we will synthesize all the skills that we have learned in Elementary School. Now we can show it off!
Slide 3: Leonid and Christian
The key purpose of Exhibition is…
- to give students an opportunity to engage in an in-depth, collaborative inquiry
- to give students the opportunity to take action
- to provide students an opportunity to demonstrate independence and responsibility for their learning
- to apply learning from previous years and reflect upon their own learning; and
- to celebrate the students’ transition from elementary to middle school
Slide 4 (Video – see link below) – Grade 6 students discussed their experiences:
Yana: The fact that we focused on our passions helped a lot, because we enjoyed working on them and researching about them… because they are our passions and we got to learn more about them. A challenge for me when researching was keeping on topic and not veering off. Our lines of inquiry helped with this.
Izzy: Groups are an important part of exhibition, you have to support them, they have to support you, you also have to rely on them as they rely on you. Last year I was gone the whole week before the final presentation, missing 5 critical days of exhibition. It was really hard to be gone, and I missed a lot. I got lucky with a good group. They caught me up, and even did some stuff for me. Not every group can do that though. If your child leaving, I advise you to help her stay in touch with her mentors, exhibition teacher, and group.It’s critical not to fall behind in exhibition, if you do, you have to work a lot harder.
Maria: My group was called the Creative Crew. It was a little hard for me to not get bossy! There is a thin line between helpful and bossy and I think I crossed it a few times! Now I know how to be helpful, but not bossy. This definitely helped me find a better balance when I collaborate.
Noah: Exhibition was a difficult time for me. I had a group where our passions were not quite in sync and we had many different views about what to do and how to do it. yet, through this hardship, I learned important skills, including leadership and collaboration. Finally and most importantly we learned how to focus what we had learned and what we loved into a presentation that represented all of our passions.
Doesja: I really enjoyed connecting with others through my passion. My group had similar passions to mine which really helped me understand about myself and my adoration for art. Not only did my mentor lead me and my group, she taught me many tricks and tips for art. Though my group was very social, I really gained a lot of independence and responsibility. It was important to me not to sink my team. I was challenged with narrowing down my passion. I loved exhibition.
Slide 5: Olivia and Katya
One of the activities each class did was to think about what the Exhibition unit is and is not. Exhibition is NOT an opportunity to palagarize. It is NOT a chance to sit back and rely on others to do your work. And maybe most importantly, you can’t give up during exhibition!
So what is exhibition? Exhibition is being able to use your creativity to share your knowledge and expand your ideas while expressing yourself. But most importantly it’s having fun LEARNING!
Slide 6: Ava and Natasha
The Transdisciplinary unit for this year’s exhibition is How We Express Ourselves. We broke it into three parts to think about it carefully.
We thought that the first part of the transdisciplinary theme, “The ways in which we discover and express ideas, feelings, nature, culture, beliefs and values,’ means to us, expressing our feelings, and ideas about our passions, and discovering more about them.
The second part of the Transdisciplinary theme, “The ways in which we reflect on, extend, and enjoy our creativity,” means to us looking back and enjoying our passions, while we express our creativity through them. It also means we will extend our passions as we inquire even deeper.
The last part of the transdisciplinary theme is “our appreciation of the aesthetic.” We think this means, how we appreciate the aesthetics and beauty of things through our passions. We also think this allows us to include others in our passions through our actions.
Slide 7: Tom
The central idea for this unit of Who we are is… : People’s passions provoke and sustain learning and creativity while providing a way for them to contribute to the community. In other words, exhibition is a way for kids to express themselves through their passions and use their passions to contribute to their society.
Slide 8: Julia and Anoushka
As part of tuning in we had passion speakers come and talk to us about their passions. We had many passion speakers come and we even had a student speak to us. She took action on her passion, which is spreading peace, equality and tolerance through her efforts working at a Tolerance Museum.
Slide 9: Natasha
After the speakers spoke about their passions, we completed an organizer – to make connections to global issues, notice when their passions developed and who influenced them.
Slide 10: Ava
After we heard all the passion speakers we used our organizers to create one poster. The poster showed how that passion could help a community.
Slide 11: Alex and Leonardo
To start figuring out what we would focus on in our inquiries, we thought of all the things that we liked, loved and were passionate about. Then we looked at our passions through the lenses of the transdisciplinary themes, or the units of the year. Then we connected our passions to the concepts and supported them with our knowledge. Finally we ordered our passions – and the burning questions we have about them and turned in our top choices for inquiry. After this meeting, we will be going back to class to find out our groups and who our mentors will be. I am sooooo excited!
Slide 12: Olivia
This is the inquiry cycle that we will be using during the exhibition unit. For the past two weeks we have been tuning in to which passion we will chose and soon we will start finding out about that passion. We are all excited and looking forward to sorting out, going further, making conclusions, and the one I’m most excited about and I’m sure other 5th graders are excited about too… is taking action!
Slide 13: Tom
There is a fifth grade parent blog. During Exhibition, this will be updated every week. It will tell what your kids are doing each week. You should check the blog each week to see what your kids are up to during the exhibition unit. If you subscribe, you’ll get an email each time something new is posted.
Slide 14: Katya
Everyone in the 5th Grade Village will try to make this exhibition memorable, but there are ways you can help too.
Slide 15: Anoushka
You can help your child IMPROVE his/her knowledge and understanding by checking in with us each week and asking us questions about what we’re learning.
Slide 16: Katya
Also you can suggest ideas and help us understand more difficult concepts, and help us contact someone to interview for our research.
Slide 17 and 18: Anoushka
You can also take us to museums and help us find places to find out more about our passions. There are many more things you can do but a few things you shouldn’t do are:
- take surprise holidays
- do our work for us
- give us answers.
We will really appreciate your support and encouragement.
Slide 19: Leonardo and Christian
Here are some important dates for you and for us. The student led conference is on the 8th of April. For grade 5, this is has an exhibition focus. We will share our progress so far and our goals for successfully completing exhibition.
We’ll start our Exhibition presentations on April 28th, but the 29 is the big evening for parents. We’ll let you know soon, what time you need to come in the evening for our performance and presentation.
We need to wear our formal uniforms again for all of these dates. Don’t forget to remind me to wear my nice shoes, Mom.
Thanks and we look forward to sharing our learning with you.
Karen Beukering (Grade 5 parent): Our daughter, Janna, was in grade 5 last year, which was also her first year at AAS. She was in Ms. Ansell’s class. Now our second daughter, Rosa, is in grade 5. She is in Ms. Pellerin’s class. Both teachers asked me to tell you some more about my experiences with the exhibition process as a parent.
Of course we had no idea what to expect. I remember Janna being a bit nervous about finding her real passion and finding out she has no real passion, being quite a generalist. Rosa already found out the same thing by now. Which doesn’t surprise us at all, as we are her parents!
As Janna loves to do arts and crafts and was by that time experimenting a lot with nail polish designing, she decided that her passion she decided that was her passion. I think it was very helpful for the rest of the project to narrow down her subject, make it small and better to research. Arts and crafts would’ve been too wide, too general.
I remember Janna bursting into tears the first week of the exhibition and asking me if I could please talk to Ms. Ansell, as she was getting stressed out by all the work and thinking, combined with her after-school activities and long traveling in the school bus. I talked it over with Ms. Ansell and from then on the amount of IXL homework was decreased, if I remember correctly.
After her passion was chosen and the working groups were put together, everything went very smoothly. I think the school and the teachers did a wonderful job guiding the children through the process, really step-by-step. Only when she was writing her paper about nail art did she need help from us, as parents. Not only for English, but she needed guidance for some general ideas, directions for research, asking the right questions, but also to help us find someone she could interview.
I know she really liked the last part of the exhibition, where they get 1 to 2 full days to decorate their booth and then finally show their learning!
I asked Janna yesterday what she learned from the exhibition and which experiences she is still using in grade 6. She mentioned working together in a group, how to work on the layout of a paper or report, and how to do research.
She also said that the whole process was very clear to her, everything was explained very well and the booklet they got was very helpful.