As we enter our final full week of the 2012-2013 school year, preparations are already underway for our next school year! At our final staff meeting of the year, staff spent some time reviewing and reflecting on our Programme of Inquiry. Grade teams made sure that their grade level Programme of Inquiry was current based on how their units progressed this year, then, the real fun began! Grade teams switched perspectives and reviewed another grade level’s Programme of Inquiry to provide their input into how to make improvements to the Units of Inquiry. It also allowed them to see the vertical alignment of the programme, how connections can be made across the grades and how students can construct and build onto their knowledge as they move up in the grades. It allowed the grade teams to look for ways to bridge concepts or ideas that are touched upon in the grade below them. This constructivist approach to learning is a major component of the Primary Years Programme.
We are also in the works of preparing to implement a school-wide digital portfolio program, which will allow our students to document their learning journey throughout their time at Prairie Waters Elementary. This program will roll-out in the new school year and we are so excited to begin!
Next year, we are going to host our very first Exhibition at Prairie Waters. In the new school year, some of the teachers on the Grade 5 team will attend an IB training workshop on the Exhibition, and we are working in close collaboration with our neighbouring PYP schools (Strathcona Tweedsmuir and Millarville Community School) to tap into their knowledge of how to structure an Exhibition. They have been great at answering our questions in regards to the planning and implementation of the Exhibition. As the Exhibition is the students’ culminating inquiry project as they prepare to say goodbye to the Primary Years Programme, we want to celebrate it in the biggest way possible! So stay tuned next year for your invitation to come participate and share in the successes that our students are sure to demonstrate! We hope to have a live twitter feed as well as a blog up and running throughout the Exhibition for our international friends to join us as well!
While it is yet to be confirmed, I have heard from the International Baccalaureate Organization, and it sounds like our verification visit is going to be scheduled for Monday October 21 and Tuesday October 22.
So while this school year is just about to come to a close, we are still thinking forward to next year! We have had a very successful year here at PWE with PYP, and I thank you for taking the time to follow along on our exciting journey! Here’s to many new adventures and updates in the 2013-2014 school year!
Happy Summer, everyone!