School to School is an annual event hosted by Sekolah Ciputra and dedicated to educators who are willing to learn and share their professional learning with colleagues across East Java. This year, it was held on February 25th. Ms. Hestya and I took led a workshop about math misconceptions in the primary years. This area intrigues me, as I believe all Math concepts can be investigated and explained in a simple way and we don’t need to say “this is the procedure, formula, or theory that you need to remember” to our students, which is the way I was taught. If our students understand how math works, rather than memorize formulas, they will love it.
We started the activity by giving a pretest to the workshop participants to identify misconceptions they had. It was surprising to me that no one answered all the questions correctly. Then we followed up with an activity designed to accommodate the needs of the participants and to refine their misconceptions. We discussed and investigated the following topics:
(1) What is a concept, a conception and a misconception?
(2) What forms of misconceptions occur in primary school?
(3) How do teachers respond to student misconceptions?
(4) What techniques are there to eliminate misconceptions?
To refine the participants’ understanding of Math concepts we did a gallery walk. One important thing that we shared is how Math pre-conceptions leads to further misconception. One example is:
- Students get confused with the alligator/Pacman analogy. Is the bigger value eating the smaller one? Is it the value already eaten or about to be eaten? Do I add what it has eaten?
- In helping students make sense of subtraction they are told to always take the smaller number away from the larger number.
4 – 8 = ?
From this workshop, I have learned that effective teachers understand that mistakes and confusion provide powerful learning opportunities. I believe the quote below reminds us that misconceptions hinders inquiry.
“The worst thing about mnemonics is not that they almost always fall apart, they don’t encourage understanding, and never justify anything; it’s that they kill curiosity and creativity – two important character traits that too many math teachers out there disregard.” -Andy Martinson
PYP 6 Teacher and Year Level Coordinator
The 100th day of school celebration on Wednesday, 18th January, 2017 was a great experience for PYP 1 students. Parent, students and teachers worked collaboratively on many events. Parents and students designed individual 100th day t-shirt using materials from home and all students wore it on the day. Not only the students, but teachers also supported this event by creating examples of 100 objects and decorating school T-shirt. Living and nonliving things was the topic because it was related to the unit of How The World Works. Students participated in different activities related to the unit which was interesting since they could explore their knowledge and creativity. Making a 100th day of school hat was a favourite activity because they created a different look and unique hats. They practised their fine motor skill by choosing different accessories and decoration for their hats. In language, they read 100 words in English and counted 100 books in each class library. They arranged books from the tallest to the shortest book and made comparisons using appropriate language. The students also created a Bahasa Indonesia dictionary which consists of 100 words with pictures and sample of simple sentences. Drawing 100 living things and 100 non living things gave a chance for students to demonstrate their learning visually. The 100th day of school is one of the significant events which involves all students and the school community.
PYP 1 teacher/ coordinator
Sekolah Ciputra Surabaya
Early years education works best when children have opportunities to explore their environment and experience learning in more meaningful and engaging ways. Children will develop better motoric, cognitive, social and emotional abilities based on their age development. In order to support children’s learning, teachers should be aware of their students’ needs and engage with the learning itself.
One essential framework that helps teachers to develop deeper understanding about their students’ learning needs is ‘Notice-Recognize-Respond’. It provides detailed information about students as individuals for teachers to plan, assess their students’ learning and develop further teaching-learning process.
How ‘Notice-Recognize-Respond’ Works in My Class?
I use a ‘Notice-Recognize-Respond’ framework to promote successful whole-child education and develop appropriate approaches to each student.
- Notice the interest of students.
- Observe the children during their play either in groups or a solitary play.
- Involve with them and discuss about the activities.
- Record the information through photos, interviews, and notes.
- Understand what they are trying to learn.
- Discuss the possible learning with them.
- Change the environment to deepen the students’ learning.
- Provide the continuation of students’ exploration.
I conduct ‘Notice-Recognize-Respond’ in my class as follows.
Trevor’s Learning Story:
Trevor explored his school playground and stopped in front of one plant. He was interested in a part of the plant. He observed there were some green, round shapes. He showed his finding to his teacher and asked what they were. His teacher asked him to guess what they were and he guessed those were fruits. His teacher didn’t tell Trevor what they were and suggested that he observe them for a few weeks. Trevor agreed to the idea. The next day, his teacher shared Trevor’s experience with the class and played a video about the parts of a plant. She provided a chart for Trevor so he could draw the changes as they happened to the mysterious green round shapes. He observed them the following day and drew what he saw on the chart. He tried to be consistent in observing the plant. A few weeks after, he saw that they had turned into small white things. He showed his teacher the change. His teacher asked him what they were and he answered they were tiny flowers. His teacher told him those green round shapes are called buds. Trevor told his teacher that it took some time for the buds to turn into flowers.
Under the theme of “How The World Works” with the central idea “Problem solving leads to inventions and innovation”, PYP 5 students are currently learning about invention and problem solving. To support students’ understanding of these concepts and in an attempt to foster transdisciplinary collaboration in Mandarin class, students inquired into the invention of the printing press, one of the four great Chinese inventions. The first type of printing press was invented by a Chinese man named Bi Sheng and later improved upon by Johannes Gutenberg of Germany.
As a provocation activity, students were given one Chinese character (e.g. 王, 白, 林), and asked to make as many identical copies as possible in a very limited time. To accomplish this mission, the students tried different methods, such as measuring and copying. During reflection time, they realized that making identical copies in a limited amount of time was not at all an easy or efficient thing to do.
Then we had a discussion focused on the question: how can we make this job easier? Students came up with the idea of making a stamp which is actually a simplified version of a printing machine. Students created their own stamps using available materials. Once they had finished their stamps, they tried the same task again which was to make multiple copies of the Chinese character. In conclusion, they realized it is much easier to do this task using the stamp which in turn explains how simple machines can help us to solve many problems and make our jobs easier.
This inquiry did not only show the invention of printing but also extended into studies into chinese language and culture. It gave students good insights into how problem-solving leads to inventions and innovation, while giving them an opportunity to explore Chinese culture and heritage.
By Karina Wiguna Atmaja
Sekolah Ciputra, Surabaya
As part of our school’s commitment to create a community of lifelong learners, we held two induction sessions, for parents new to the IB programme and for teachers new to our school and to the IB programme as well.
During the session with parents, we discussed the pace of change in the 21st century and the challenges our children have to face. The first/morning session was for pre-elementary parents. Mr. Dylan Braithwaite, one of the expat teachers in the pre-elementary unit, with a strong background in play-based learning, shared how the IB programme is implemented in the pre-elementary. He explained that Inquiry in the early years is framed within three basic principles:
- Curiosity comes first. Curiosity comes naturally to young learners and should be encouraged and supported through learning daily experiences.
- Embrace the mess. Embracing the mess here means that early-years learning happens in various ways of exploration, trying things out, making sense of how things work out or not, observing what’s around them and so on. This learning doesn’t come in a neat and clean environment, instead students need to have more opportunities to ‘play’ it out.
- Practice reflections. Practicing reflection means making reflection a regular part of learning to make sure we can make the connections within ourselves, with peers and with the world.
The next session was set up to give the participants ‘real’ learning experiences. We started with a test, the kind of test we did when we were young. Everyone was familiar with the ‘test’ and knew that it would only require the correct answers of factual information they could memorize.
An interesting thing happened in the next stage of the session, when these parents were asked to come up with their ideas of what a good learner looks like. At this stage, a new learning experience was obvious as this task required a whole set of thinking and communication skills. The participants started to show creativity, to show courage in expressing individual thoughts/opinions in the form of a diagram/picture and communicating ideas with others.
One of the questions coming from parents was about how to access all these IB terms and words, and how they can use them at home. The link here provides all the 5 Essential Elements used on a daily basis with brief explanation for each and suggestions on how parents may use it to have conversations with their children at home: https://goo.gl/fplPM6
To summarize the session, the parents felt really positive about the IB programme and how Sekolah Ciputra has implemented it in day-to-day teaching and learning. They realized that it is important for us to keep a strong partnership between home and school so that the students can benefit from it.
The other induction session was for the new teachers. Having had the opportunities to immerse themselves in the day-to-day planning, teaching and assessing, these new teachers were ready with the new learning and brought questions they wanted answered and issues they wanted to clarify and understand better.
A good practice in an inquiry approach is to start with prior knowledge, which basically means that the learners try to make connections with what they already know.
We used blob figures as one media of choice for a reflection. These blob figures are really helpful for any reflection purposes, each with its own action so the learner can choose which blob represents his/her reflection.
The main discussion throughout the sessions is based on this PYP Curriculum model:
This model summarizes what the IB PYP curriculum is and how it underpins planning, teaching and assessing for teachers.
Our school is committed to professional development of all staff. We will have in-school IB PYP workshops on January 20th – 21st, 2017 to further develop our understanding of concept-based teaching and learning, inquiry and assessment approaches.
Enthusiastic and willing to try new things, that’s the spirit that appeared when 73 PYP 6 Sekolah Ciputra students and 9 teachers journeyed to the city of art and culture, Jogjakarta, 4-7 October 2016. This is part of the PYP 6 program within the unit Where We Are in Place And Time. The aim of the trip was for students to study the history, art and culture of along with ways to preserve Indonesia’s rich cultural heritage. . The city of Yogyakarta is an ideal choice because the people of Jogja carefully preserve their art and culture. Jogja also has a lot of interesting historical and archaeological sites that the students were able to explore. Jogjakarta is also a place where students can directly observe how culture unfolds in society, interact with cultural actors, and learn to appreciate the richness of their cultural heritage. The knowledge and experience that students gained during the study tour gave them important insights when they were challenged to analyze the significance of cultural heritage and how it connects to society in today’s life.
To learn about the elements of visual arts, the students visited the Kasongan village, known for its pottery and Batik Kelik for batik making. Students learnt to be creative in making and painting pottery. At Kraton Yogyakarta, Borobudur and Prambanan temples, students saw real examples of how culture is both preserved and experienced by today’s society. At Padepokan Seni Bagong Kusudiardja, gathering place for artists of Javanese culture, students were able to interact with artists and learn about creativity in dance and theatre directly from the experts is.
The most interesting experience was when the students visited the Tourism Village of Kebon Agung, just 1 hour from the city. In this village students interacted with people who still live traditionally in a rural setting. Students plowed a rice field and planted rice in a paddy. Moreover, students learnt various skills, such as Javanese gamelan, stringing coconut leaf, processing of rice, and making munchies ‘jemblem’.
The four-day study tour created a lasting impression on the students. In addition to gaining knowledge, they also learnt independence, self-management skills and appreciation for history. This was an important step for our students in learning to organize themselves and adapting to a different social life where the people still uphold cultural values. These life skills will be beneficial for them in the future.
PYP 6 Team Leader Sekolah Ciputra Surabaya
PYP 2 students just finished learning about how processes work in creating products, under a unit of HOW WE ORGANIZE OURSELVES. Students had shown prior knowledge of some concepts, such as function, change. process and product. I sent the students a link of a movie that I made at the beginning of the unit. They have to discuss the movie with their parents at home. When they came back to school the next day, they came with some ideas to share, and were ready to classify some products that I brought from home. I usually call this teaching strategy a Flipped Classroom approach.
Students were learning by visiting a cow farm to feed the cows and goats, milk cows, and they went to hydroponic garden to see the examples of the cultivation process. They experienced processing the raw materials such as milk into pudding, or other materials such as paper into a story book or crafts that they made in the classroom.
In the 4th week, students started to learn how products are distributed. It still needed one more process to reach consumers. I asked them to have a short chat with their neighbour about any products that they have used. Then they explored some products made in other countries that my partner and I provided. The students came up with the ideas of brand, package, location and destination of the products, and also the ideas of export and import.
Students have had enough experience to start to interview their parents and did some research to find more products which were exported or imported. They watched movie to find out more information about it, too.
Showing a world google map is one of the strategies that provoked the students to think about how products are distributed around the world. They were challenged to imagine how long products to arrive in a destination by looking at the map. They also thought about the transportation needed to distribute large amounts of products. The students constructed their own conceptual understanding about distribution by finally making a flowchart of how they produced their own product at the end of the unit.
YULITA KURNIA-PYP 2 CLASS TEACHER AND TEAM LEADER