A reflection by Haeysha Aravind, Grade 5
“Students are taught to think for themselves and to drive the learning process” (www.ibo.org). This is central focus of an IB education and is exemplified at WISS during Exhibition for the Primary Years Programme. Exhibition is the culminating project of the PYP. It is a collaborative inquiry that students have a personal interest in exploring and that requires students to apply their learning from previous years. It is a demonstration of how students can take action as a result of their learning. Finally, and an extremely important aspect, Exhibition is a celebration of who our students are as IB learners.
Here we can see how the process of learning is demonstrated through 5th grader Haeyshna Aravind’s reflection about her Exhibition journey.
Passion Pitch was an event early on in the Exhibition process. It was a chance for students to present to a teacher their ‘passion’ (Something that they would like to focus on for Exhibition). It had to be an issue that would be deep enough for students to inquire into for the 8 week process.
Haeyshna: So, it was a wet day which added more nervousness to me. I was waiting outside for the previous group to exit from the back of the Annex. Ms.Garrigan came out and told us to walk in and meet our teacher we would pitch to. My heart was thumping like it would break out at any moment. My teacher was Ms. Anoo. I sat in the small folding chair in front of her. I waited patiently for it to start, when it did, I answered her first question, “What is your issue”. I answered perfectly the way I had planned, but the next question was nothing I ever thought I had needed to practice for. From there, it went quite downhill. I had to answer questions I never practiced for, and I tried to say what my personal connection to Trolling (my issue) but I got a lump that prevented me from saying it.
Even before the end, she said she was giving me a yellow card. During passion pitch everyone will be given a card ; Green, Yellow or Red. Green meant you were ready to go. Yellow was more of needs improvement and to meet Ms Kent. Red was you need to change the issue and meet Ms Garrigan. After lunch, I went to the Annex again to talk with Mrs. Ellery. This time I switched my topic to a more surface level issue called cyberbullying. She gave me green and left with some homework to ask my parents if they were willing to help me find good resources that were child-friendly.
Journals were used to house the students thinking and understanding of the process. They also recorded summaries and research in the WIkiSpaces site that each group had.
Haeyshna: We basically put all research, assignment reminders, concept questions, and other things we need in our book. Over the course of Exhibition, my book has become a bit battered and worn out, just like all my books.
As we go on researching we find out more facts, so writing down in journal helps us. It also helps us to be on the right track. The teachers and mentors could also see what we have been researching on so far.
X-Factor was an event where each exhibition group presented their inquiry thus far and any action that they were planning on taking. The panel of judges came from every section of the school that students presented to. After they presented to the judges, feedback was provided to the students for how to improve, keep, change for staging days.
Haeyshna: We needed to present our findings so far to a panel of judges. We had to present it in an out-of-the-box way. My partner and I felt very nervous throughout and I felt like I was holding my breath. Because of the unique method we adopted to present our findings, which was a non-verbal and visual representation using cards, we got the panel’s attention and good remarks. Our presentation had a great impact on our topic.
Over a 2 day period, students present their exhibition to the community. This is the final step that showcases the process of inquiry and the results and actions of their research.
Haeyshna: I am in a group with Ryan, from grade 5 Red and both of us were working on the issue “bullying”. Our exhibition consists of 3 steps: 1. researching on bullies and victims where we split the work between us, 2. Teaching grade 3 and 4 about bullying as well as putting up posters and 3. Preparing for the Staging Day.
It was exciting and nervous day for us. Having to stand for hours and saying the same thing to parents, teachers, students and visitor, I nearly lost my voice. It was also exciting teaching the EY on bullying. End of the day it was a sigh of relief to know it was completed with great success for all of us.
I am most proud about our Staging Day presentation. We worked hard together with lots of ups and downs and did a great job on our Exhibition.