Friday, 24 May 2013

How can we introduce 5 year olds to passion projects of their choice?

At one of our daily reflection times in class a student appeared to be off task during his learning choice time. However when asked questions to share what he was doing with his time he explained to the class how he was investigating the difference between an angler fish and another type of fish. He had drawn labels and diagrams, researched in books and recorded his findings in his own investigating book. He has only just turned six. I was impressed. So as a community of learners I inquired who else wanted to do theri own project. They all stood up!!! So here it goes.
Step 1. Why its a good idea - someone has already done this work. However, it was very evident it was a passion and a need in our pod of 66 children. Check out this link.

How could we manage it?
We provided a space on our Pataitai Grid for each learning space for them to choose when and where they would do their project
We provided examples and resources to collect information using a variety of graphic organisers.

Displayed or introduced ways to present information looking at the multiple intelligence's. This was introduced 1 at a time for each space. We were always looking for great examples of the children's work to use as exemplars to scaffold the other children.

Nature and Number Learning Space - logical mathematical, naturalist, spatial
Quiet Learning Space - intrapersonal, linguistic
Performing Arts Learning space - bodily - kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal

Reflecting on the learning process is the most powerful way to ignite new ideas and new ways of thinking. This is always the most valued time of the day.

The children were free to research, record, manage information and present in a way that suited their confidence and learning style all morning every morning.

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