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Through Artworks, We Delivered Our Feeling and Thoughts

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“You’re my best friend, just like a family. We keep best moments in our mind. We remember every time with you”. DSC_2381

That’s a part of the song that one of Grade 5 students composed with her group in music class, as their interest for the mini exhibition project. This year, Grade 5 students chose to do a mini exhibition, as a form of Parent Presentation. They took the unit of art under the theme of How We Express Ourselves.

IMG_3503The central idea is “Creating and responding to art develops understanding of ourselves and the world around us”. This time, they made their lines of inquiry from their questions. Despite of challenging found in this stage, the fifth graders showed their enthusiasm by being more selective in forming the lines of the inquiry. Moreover, as they worked in pairs to do the project, the challenges seemed more interesting for them.

DSC_2393Other challenges were to find the information explaining their lines of inquiry, but they have tried to research using different media, such as books, the internet, as well as interviewing people at school and at home.The artwork that they explored were music, drawing, graffiti, mixed media, crafting, etc. Single Subject Teachers, such as art, music, IT, were involved to help students in guiding them during the process of collecting information and to consult on their project.

The fifth graders have learned lots of things during the process; how to learn with others, to share responsibilities, to create their own artwork, and to present the information in front of audiences. Their hard work was seen from the beginning of the project up to the D- day.

DSC_2444This event successfully held on Friday, 26th January. The students enthusiasticallypresented their creation such as performing their own song “Best Friends” and “The Special One”. Positive response and support from their parents and school community were seen during the exhibition. This activity will help them picturing what exhibition looks like next year.

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Let’s Appreciate Our Food!

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Under the theme “How We Organize Ourselves” Grade 1 students had the opportunity to learn about the journey of food production. To find out about our prior knowledge, we worked in pairs and observed different types of food and drinks using a Mini Market activity. After having the observation, we chose one type of food or drink, discussed with our partners and presented our findings about the origins of food. The most interesting part was that some of us had an argument about the origins of potato chips, milk, and cheese.

Potato chips:

Our friends had an opinion that the origin of potato chips is that the worker has to cut the potatoes really thin before they fry them. Others said that the origin of potato chips is from flour. The workers need to put the dough into the mold and make it really thin. After they fry the dough, they give potato flavour to make it taste like potato.

Milk:

All of us agree that milk can come from animals or plants. But one of the groups that choose “milk” said that strawberry milk comes from the cow that eat strawberries, chocolate milk comes from the cow that eat chocolate bars, and vanilla milk comes from the cow that eat grass. Some other groups still didn’t have any prior knowledge about milk production.

Cheese:

We also know that the origin of cheese is from milk. At first, we thought that if cheese comes from milk, it means we only need to put the milk in the freezer to make it solid like cheese. Do you think our thinking is right? Scroll and read carefully our article!

After the mini market activity presentation, our teachers give us a catalogue of products then we have to categorize them based on the origins of the products (animal or plant) in pairs using T-chart. We still had confusion about the origins of food, whether from plants or animals.

Our next activity were watching videos of “How Is Rice Made. kimi Food Facts for Kids.  Inside the Farm with Kids”, “Remarkable Rice. How Does Rice Grow”, “Growing Rice in Indonesia”, and “Growing Rice in Jiuxiancun, China”. From the videos, now we know that Indonesia and China have the same processes to grow rice. After having discussions about the origins and the processes of rice production, our teachers divided us into 4 groups  to make a flow chart about the processes of rice production. We made the flow charts using Paint application, session in ICT lesson.

Next, we had a storytelling session from the book “See Inside Where Food Comes From” by Emily Bone. It is very interesting that milk comes not only from cows, but also from other animals, such as goat, camel and horse! We also read “Learn about Food” by Brimax and watched a video of “How Orange Juice Is Made” to learn that orange come from seeds. After we read the stories and watched the movie, we made a flow chart by drawing the origins of food and the processes by ourselves.

Next experiment was our favourite! We put two cartons of milk, chocolate and vanilla in our school freezer and waited until the next day to prove to our teachers that our thinking was right. After two days, we took the milk from the freezer and opened it in our classroom. From the colours, we saw that the colours were different from the colour of the cheese that we saw every day. Our friend said that maybe the worker put food colouring so the cheese can change the colour into yellow. But after we taste it, it taste like ICE CREAM! IT’S NOT CHEESE! From the experiment, we realize that it was not how to produce our cheese.
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From our flow chart, we made a book about food production. We could choose from milk production, juice production or rice production. In our book you can see our drawings and sentences about food production and the key roles people play in food production.

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We discuss and write our script
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We prepare our props
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It’s time for role play!

IMG_1569For our summative assessment task, we had a role play. First, we chose the topic (milk production, rice production or juice production). Second, we discussed with our group about the characters and who would play them. After we knew our characters, we wrote the story with our group. We practised and we made our own props.

Let’s appreciate our food and be thankful for our daily meal because the processes of food production spend a lot of time and energy!

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Grade 1 students and teachers

The Power of Professional Learning Networks

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We are, by nature social beings who are constantly trying to make sense of the world through our interactions with others. It is therefore no surprise that we learn best when we learn from and with others. As educators, taking an active role within a professional learning network can be beneficial for our professional development. Below are some reasons why networking with fellow teachers in your region or around the world would be beneficial and some suggestions on how to begin.

Professional learning networks are important to educators because:

  • we can share each other’s practices and hear each other’s stories to avoid local blindness
  • we keep up with change, innovation and technology as we use technology to enhance our networks.
  • we have a place to reflect on our practice and improve it. Feedback from others will be helpful for reflection to improve our teaching and learning practices
  • we can build shared understandings of concepts and topics that are being discussed within the network.

To start networking and to maintain your network the following platforms are suggested for you:

  • Blog: The most ideal platform to share current practices, not only for your inner circle but also to wider audiences (unless you prefer to set it up to be private)
  • Twitter: Create a special hashtag for your community conversation which will empower communication or join a conversation on twitter using some popular hashtags e.g. #edchat, #pypchat etc.
  • Facebook: Great for keeping in touch with others since many people have Facebook accounts. Create a Facebook group for social bookmarking and for sharing resources in your network.
  • Google+: Follow famous people, join a community, keep updated on popular topics using the power of Google apps including Google hangout, Youtube, Blogger and Google drive.
  • Flickr/ Instagram/ Pinterest: Great visual galleries for your network use.
  • LinkedIn – professional learning network platform which provides a more formal look and context.

Personally, I’d suggest a blog as a good starting point for a professional learning network. It’s one of the reasons why we started this PYP Dunia Blog…how about you?

Yan Yulius – PYP Coordinator at Sekolah Ciputra