how we organize ourselves
Learning from individuals working in institutions promoting human rights
As our grade 5 students prepare for their PYP Exhibition in April 2017, they have had a lot of interactions and discussions with first-hand sources for the different issues they are inquiring on. The grade 5 teachers worked hard to try to get individuals, who are experts in their fields, to share their knowledge and experience with our grade 5 students.
For this year’s PYP Exhibition, the students chose the transdisciplinary theme ‘How We Organize Ourselves’ with the central idea “Social equality can determine how people act and how institutions govern.” Instead of all the 30 human rights, we will focus on freedom from discrimination, slavery, torture and degrading treatment; right to free movement, protection in another country, and right to a nationality and freedom to change it; freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and freedom of opinion and information; right to peaceful assembly and association, right to participate in government and elections; and right to desirable work and join trade unions, right to rest and leisure, right to adequate living standards.
Right to desirable work and join trade unions, right to rest and leisure, right to adequate living standards
On February 20, we were very privileged to have Indonesia’s Minister of Industry, Bapak Airlangga Hartanto, as our guest speaker. He first explained his roles as a Minister of Industry to the students. He mentioned that he works closely with Indonesian President Jokowi and other ministers for the betterment of Indonesia. He showed a video on how a big factory in Indonesia operates. After that, he enumerated the rights of workers such as minimum wage, working hours and overtime pay, medical benefits, pension fund and participation in labour unions. The students asked a lot of questions which the Minister answered cheerfully. At the end of his talk, he encouraged the students to study and work hard so that they can also help their country in the future.
Freedom from discrimination, slavery, torture and degrading treatment
On February 23, we had a Skype session with our guest speaker, Grace Villanueva, a lawyer from the Philippines. She had worked for 10 years in a non-governmental organization called Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center or LRC, whose focus is rights to natural resources of indigenous peoples and other upland poor rural communities. Prior to joining LRC, she trained in a law firm after she took the bar exams. Most recently, she was a consultant to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources of the Philippines. In her presentation to our grade 5 students, she explained who the indigenous people are and how institutions protect their rights to their lands and territories. She also shared with the students how lawyers like her educate the indigenous people about their right to be asked for their permission and their right to develop based on their own dreams. The students had a lot of questions after her presentation. One student even asked, “Why don’t the indigenous people just change their ways so they won’t be discriminated?” in which Atty. Grace replied, “There is a saying: “Why fix something if it is not broken? All they want is a happy, just, peaceful, beautiful world enjoyed by every child, woman, man, which they will pass on to their future children for them to also enjoy and take care of for future generations.”
Right to peaceful assembly and association, right to participate in government and elections
On February 28, three staff from Indonesia’s Komisi Pemilihan Umum (KPU), Ibu Lidya, Ibu Ina and Ibu Rika, went to our school and talked about the citizens’ right to choose their leader. They explained to the students the process of voting as well as the requirements for an individual to exercise his or her right to vote. Once again, our students took this opportunity to ask many questions like “Why can’t children vote?”, “How does your institution ensure a fair election?”, “What preparations do you do before an election?”, etc.
Guests from KPU explaining the citizens’ right to vote
Right to free movement, protection in another country, and right to a nationality and freedom to change it
On February 3, one of our Humanities teachers from the Middle Years Programme, Michael Athens, shared his knowledge and experience with our students. He explained to them who refugees are, why they leave their country and what their rights are. He shared his own experience about interacting with them when he worked in one of the local libraries in Minneapolis many years ago. He gave facts and figures about crimes committed which did not include any refugees’ involvement at all. The session touched the hearts of the students and made them more compassionate to people who are in need. It also made them appreciate the things that they have which they normally take for granted.
Our MYP Humanities teacher, Michael Athens, explaining the rights of refugees to our students
On March 6, we were fortunate to have been given the chance to meet refugees from Pakistan and Sri Lanka by members of a Catholic organization in Bogor called Jesuit Refugees Service (JRS). Their mission is to accompany, serve and advocate on behalf of refugees. Their main areas of work are in the field of education, emergency assistance, healthcare, livelihood activities and social services. The first activity we had was to socialize with them in our school’s playground. Most of our girls had a chat with two teenage girls from Pakistan while the boys played. We went up to our assembly area after that and all our guests introduced themselves by saying their names and which country they come from. Our students invited them in their classrooms and they shared what they usually do in the class. One girl from Pakistan said that she loves art so our students gave her a lot of art materials to draw and paint. A boy from Pakistan said he likes playing soccer so our students played soccer with him. Our students were very sensitive and did not ask about their life as a refugee. Even for a day, our grade 5 students surely brought joy to these people.
With all these interactions and discussions, our young students were able to understand not only how they should be treated but how they should treat others as well. They realize that there are actually many individuals, institutions and organizations that protect the rights of human beings. Our guest speakers created a safe place for our students to explore, discuss, challenge and form their own opinions and values. The knowledge and respect of rights that our students have gained from all these past sessions (and more to come) have empowered them to tackle discrimination or inequality and improve their relationships with the society.
By: Corita T. Silapan
Grade 5 Class Teacher and Level Head
BINUS SCHOOL Simprug
In the How We Organize Ourselves unit, Year 3 students in Sekolah Cikal learn how the connection between supply and demand creates space for economic activities. At the beginning of the unit, students explored the difference between wants and needs, and identified them by cutting and pasting some pictures from old magazines.
As the unit goes, students learned that money plays an important part in economic activities. People use money to pay for the things that they need. One way that most people get money is by earning it. Therefore, the students did some experiential learning by having a proper two-hours job during the weekend, in their family or relatives’ business. In this project, they earned some amount of money based on the prior agreement between the school, students, parents, and other parties involved. Through this activity, the students learned to recognize work as a means for earning money, to be responsible for the work that they do, and learned to manage the money that they have earned.
The Y3 experiential learning project received positive feed backs from parents. Parents praised that their children have better responsibility towards money, now that the children know what it takes to earn money on their own.
After the students do the experiential learning, it’s time to decide what they are going to do with the money. In our culture, money is one of the resources that we can save, spend, or donate. The students have their choices, and they decided to spend some of their salary as business capital. They will learn to be producers and sell their products on Y3 Market Day at Sekolah Cikal. The money raised in this Market Day will be donated to an elderly home in East Jakarta.
As the first step of being a producer, the students conduct a market survey around the school’s community. The purpose of this survey is to know what goods or services that they will sell based on the market’s interest, to know how much price should be given for their products, and to know what materials or colours that the customers prefer.
Students are then divided into groups, based on their interests and skills. Those who like to cook will be chefs, and produce some food and beverages. While other students who love arts will decorate some stationery and create their own accessories. There were also some other students who decided to provide services in games, karaoke or photo booth for the customers.
Guest Speaker and Workshops
To help students practice their skills as producers, we invited a guest speaker and conducted some workshops. The guest speaker taught them how to run business from home. The students also had a chance to learn to paint some decorative cans. Later, these cans will be given to the elderly community as a bucket to keep their personal toiletries.
Aside from the guest speaker, students then had some workshops to learn how to produce their own food, beverages, accessories or stationery that they will sell during Y3 Market Day.
In the above pictures, teachers showed the students how to make spaghetti, egg sandwich, banana pancakes and strawberry milkshake.
Students who love arts worked to produce their own necklaces, headband, hair tie, or decorated some notebooks with guidance from the teachers.
During the workshop, the students took notes on the ingredients or materials needed, the steps of making the product, and also the price for the ingredients or materials. Knowing the price for all the ingredients or materials is an important step for them to decide the price of their products later on. They learn that they have to set a higher price for their products in order to earn some profits from the business.
Now, it’s time to promote the products! Y3 students visited some classes to promote the upcoming event Y3 Market Day. They informed other students and teachers about the types of products or services that they will sell and also the price range for each product. They also informed that the money raised in this event will be used to buy some goods and toiletries needed by an elderly home in Jakarta.
A day or two days before the event, the students divided some responsibilities among themselves, such as, who will be the cashier, who will be the chef, or who will be the marketing to invite buyers to visit their booths and buy their products. Also, they decided on who will bring stove, frying pan, pot, or other kitchen utensils, as well as the tablecloth and tray to display the products.
The Market Day
Finally, the D day! Y3 Market Day started at 9 o’clock. So, from 7.30 in the morning, the students have gathered in the ‘production room’ where the class has been set up as a kitchen to produce the food and beverages. The students started preparing their products. Some of them blended the milk, ice cream, and strawberries to make milkshake and poured it into plastic cups. Some others helped to wash the tomatoes needed to make spaghetti sauce, while other students grated some cheese for the burritos filling. They also put the egg, tomatoes, and cheese in between sliced of bread to make some sandwiches.
Outside the production room, people have gathered around their booths. Some eager customers are waiting to be served. Students, teachers, and parents bought the food and beverages, stationery, and accessories from Y3 students. The students who acted as cashier took payment from the customers and gave change money when needed. Other students who acted as marketing invite buyers to buy the products in their booth, they even gave discount for the customers who bought more than one item. All of the goods are sold out in less than an hour, woohoo!!
There were also some students who provide a photo booth for the customers who would like to take pictures with friends, by using the properties that the students have prepared earlier. Soon after the picture taking, the customers then received the photo that was taken by a polaroid camera. This booth was one of the most successful and famous booth during Market Day, and they earned the most money. Good job, boys!
All in all, this unit gave many new and valuable experiences for the students. They were so happy to be able to learn about economic activities in a fun and rewarding way as producers and sellers. They also developed the concept of earning money, buying, selling, promoting, and adjusting price related to supply and demand. In addition, the students learned how to organise their money by spending, saving, or donating for the ones in need.
This will always be the unit we all look forward to.
Nisa Herliana, Grade 3 Teacher, Sekolah Cikal Cilandak.
Trade is based on a human’s capability to assess, price and market a product. Conducting trade is a skill that helps develop the intellect and willpower of an individual. It is a positive thing to teach children to trade and have children learn to do business at an early age. Teaching children to trade does not only help them to become independent and confident, but also makes them aware of their community.
In the unit of inquiry, ‘How We Organize Ourselves’, Grade 3 students organized a mini-bazaar last as their summative task. The central idea of the unit was “marketplaces rely on the production and distribution of goods and services”.
The learning objectives of organizing the mini-bazaar are as follows:
- Develop an awareness of different perspectives and ways of organizing economic activities
- Develop a list of criteria for ethical practices regarding products and services
- Explain how supply and demand are affected by population and the availability of resources
- Identify roles, goals, rights and responsibilities in society
- Learn to make a profit from their business venture
- Train students to be entrepreneurs
For this task, students were divided into four to five groups in each class. To prepare the mini-bazaar, teachers and students talked about what the students were going to sell. Students also decided on the prices and discussed their roles and responsibilities in the group, such as who would be the leader and cashier during the event.
To raise the capital, the students collected money by doing household chores for about a month prior to the mini-bazaar. Getting involved in household chores is one way the students can learn how to earn money and be responsible. After earning enough money, students used the money to buy the items to sell.
In order to support the event, teachers asked for parents’ assistance in preparing the items that the students were going to sell. One day before the mini-bazaar, the students were very enthusiastic in preparing their booths, including putting prices on the items.
Students preparing their booth decorations
Students named their booths creatively. They came up with interesting names for their booths, such as “Funny in My Tummy”, “Fun in Wonderland”, and “Amazing Surprise”.
When the big day finally arrived, the mini-bazaar was held from 7.30am until 1.00pm. Teachers, staff, parents and students from other grade levels, including middle school and high school students came and supported the event.
Teachers, parents, and students at the opening of the mini-bazaar
In total, there were 18 student booths offering a big variety of things for sale. Healthy snacks, fresh juices, and handicrafts were some of the items sold by the students. Students also came up with educational games for their booths.
The parents and students worked together to serve the customers. Several students walked around to entice customers to visit their stalls, while others preferred to wait in their booths for buyers.
After the mini-bazaar, parents and students went back to the classroom to count the money. The students received their capital back and divided the profit equally among the group members.
The event was successful! The students were so excited leading up to the event and had a great time organizing their mini-bazaar. Some of the lessons learnt by the students were marketing strategies, dealing with customers, earning money, saving money and managing money. The mini-bazaar will be an essential part of the students’ learning experiences in Grade 3.
By: Eka Fridayanti
Grade 3 Co-Teacher
BINUS SCHOOL Simprug
In our first unit of inquiry, How We Organize Ourselves”, K3 students of TKK PENABUR Banda have been learning about school with the specific central idea,” The school community has a role in making the system work for us”.
During the unit, students brainstormed the definition of school and shared about the school community. By knowing about the school and its community; they learned that both of these elements served in a systematic structure in order making the school itself runs well.
At the ‘tuning-in’, students drew what they know about school and community then they get familiarized with the roles and responsibilities that each community member has. They learned by exploring the school; knowing the teachers, admin staff, supporting staff and maintenance staff. After knowing who and what they do, K3 students learned about the system of leadership, now they know that the Principal is the highest person in charge in school to take care of the school and to make sure that the school is well-organized. They did an interview with the principal, the curriculum coordinator, teacher, finance and admin staff, the school counselor, the security guard, the kitchen helper, the librarian and the cleaning service. By doing so, students are becoming more knowledgeable about what school is and who are working in school. They also becoming more caring and showing respect by greeting the community members that they meet every day.
As one of the actions of understanding and applying their thinking skills as well as their social skills; K3 students did an internship as the librarian, security guard, admin staff, student service and cleaning service. They showed their courageous profile and enthusiasm in doing the roles and responsibilities. Not only enjoying their parts in doing the internship; now they also show tolerance because they know that each of the community members is important in making the system work for us. *(Lenny – BPK Penabur Banda)
At Sekolah Ciputra, we consider the Visual Arts room not only a place for students to create artwork; instead we consider it more as a place for freedom of expression, for exploring possibilities, for challenging creativity and for promoting inquiry. The Visual Arts teacher is not the single authority in this space. We offer students opportunities to build the Visual Arts room together with the teacher. We use the learning opportunities offered under the transdisciplinary theme “How We organize ourselves” to engage students collectively in realizing this vision of a shared creative space. Below are the details of the unit:
A supportive work environment is essential to the development of our creativity
Key concepts: Function, Responsibility and Reflection
Related concepts: organization, work environment, creativity, aesthetic, design,
Lines of Inquiry
- Considerations when working in a Visual Arts room
- How the Visual Arts room supports the development of our creativity
- Maintaining a supportive Visual Arts room environment
Summative assessment task(s):
Students work in groups to design a safe and comfortable Visual Arts room to be used by the entire school community. This room should be organized with clear procedures and agreements created by all users (teachers and students). Students need to present their ideas for management, organization and design of the Visual Arts room to teachers and peers. The chosen ideas are accepted and applied in the Visual Arts room for use by everyone.
Once the idea is adopted, it is applied throughout the year. This has helped to build a greater sense of shared ownership of this creative space, with students actively taking responsibility for maintaining the space.
In addition to engaging students in designing and maintaining the Visual Arts room, here are some tips on creating an environment of inquiry that I gathered during my first year as a Visual Arts teacher:
- Materials and equipment should be easily accessible by students. When there are varied items available for them to use independently, then you may expect more from students in terms of creativity and inquiry, especially when exploring the use of these tools and materials.
- Make the thinking visible. Just like in other inquiry classrooms, you need to involve students in thinking and creative processes. More importantly this needs to be visible in the classroom. Use thinking routines such as “I see…I Think…I Wonder” which fits well with “responding to art” activities.
- Display provoking questions, along with samples of Art work. These questions provoke students to think about their responses to art work and to take inspiration from the samples. The questions should be conceptual and related to the UOI.
- Involve students in responding to Art. Encourage students to express their thoughts and opinions as this might lead to further inquiry questions. At the same time, students are learning about the techniques and elements of Visual Arts.
- Display lots of provoking images and artwork. These are great primary resources for allowing students to tune in to various art concepts and can also be a source of inspiration.
- Provide a variety of books about art. There are books available for students to use both for inspiration and for learning about technique.
Those are just a small sample of ideas and tips that could hopefully be useful for your school’s Visual Arts room or maybe for your classroom.
Yan Yulius – PYP Coordinator at Sekolah Ciputra, Surabaya, Indonesia