Archive of ‘Inquiry’ category

Shaping up with Shapes

photo 1Over these last few weeks, students have been playing with, discussing and making shapes. They’ve learned to discuss shape properties using geometric language and put together their learning in a presentation.

Shapes demand some hands-on play, and studentsphoto 3 have made 3-D shapes using nets, blocks and sticks and clay. They’ve also put together a presentation of their learning. It’s shaping up to be a great end of the year!

An’s presentation about shapes:

Tales of Migration and Tasty Ainu Food

Today students had a fascinating day listening to real stories of migration from two people on staff. Students also got a chance to make and taste some traditional Ainu food.

DSCN1610In the morning, Mr. Mejia, who is a high school Mathematics and Physics teacher, told his story of growing up in Guatemala and his migration to Norway and eventually to Japan. Students got to hear a real-life story of growing up during a civil war and how he was forced to flee. He got refugee status in Norway and now holds a Norwegian passport. His story was fascinating for the students although sad as the war destroyed a lot of things for him.

This afternoon, Jun, who works in our canteen, told his story of fleeing Tibet, asking for asylum inDSCN1623 Nepal and then eventually getting to northern India. He talked about the Chinese government’s occupation, and his journey by foot across the Himalayas when he was 8. Fascinating story and really interesting man. The students seemed excited to hear his story as they know him as the “nice guy” from the canteen.

DSCN1616In between speakers, students went over to the ICJC to make and taste traditional Ainu food. The Ainu are original inhabitants of Japan and were forced into the northern part of Japan and Russia. 4B students ate potato pancakes, mashed pumpkin and a soup made out of interesting vegetables and dried salmon. The students loved the potato pancakes. Some liked the soup.

It was a fascinating trip around the world today learning about Where We Are in Place and Time.

Where We Are in Place and Time

DSCN1464This week, we kicked off our new unit, “Where We Are in Place and Time.” On Monday, students were forced out of their classroom in a provocation designed to get the students thinking about what it’s like to have to leave your home. Students kept their backpacks with them as they walked to ICJC for the morning, then off campus in an attempt to find a place where they could study. Although back in for Music and lunch, students didn’t return to their classroom all day.

Our unit is about migration and the reasons why people migrate and have migrated throughout history and the impact of that migration. Students reflected after their forced migration from their classroom that they could understand how it feels like to migrate.

DSCN1587We also finished a read aloud this week, A Long Walk to Water, about the Sudanese refugees who walked for years between 3 countries, trying to find a home. We then watched a movie called, A Good LIe, about Sudanese refugees coming to America. Students made some great connections between their forced march and the Sudanese refugees. Of course, they also realized how their migration was temporary and overall pretty good.

We also looked at some recent news about boatloads of people from Myanmar and Bangladesh who have been turned away from several Southeast Asian countries, and they continue to float without a home, decent food or water. Students began to look at the impact of these migrants on the migrants themselves, on their own country and the possible effect it would have on the countries they are trying to reach. Good conversations starting already about migration. And after the initial provocation of being “kicked out” of their classroom, students are beginning to have some empathy for those without a home, who struggle to find a place in the world. Good conversations have been happening all week.


Campaign Posters!

Blog post by: Mitsuki, An and Eileen

This week, 4th grade finished making posters for their campaign. You can see some of the posters if you click this site. It says their name and the poster they made.

We are doing the campaign so we can help people, help the environment or to remind them and being safe. Some people are doing a campaign about helping the homeless people, so they help by donating clothes or something to the homeless. Some people are picking up trash because of their campaign, and some people are helping with computer safety. Others are trying to stop bullying and much more.

Here are a few of the posters.

This is by Mitsuki

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This is by Jungsu

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