During the past month 4G students have been inquiring into how our bodies and thoughts change as we grow older. Students chose an area that interested them, they found out as much as possible then last week had the opportunity to share what they had found out with the group. There was a huge range of ideas, topics and concepts explored by the students. Some of these including growth, puberty, well being, healthy diet, keeping a healthy heart, sexuality, genetics, active living and the ageing process.
Students were encouraged to choose an area that they feel the most passionate and curious about. While listening to students share their findings and viewing the level of engagement and excitement I was once again reminded of why teaching in the PYP is such a rewarding experience.
One student in particular really blew the class away. She is quite new to the school and only started to speak English a short time ago. She has a seven year old sister with a genetic disorder called Rett’s Syndrome. She decided to find out more about what life will be like for her sister as she grows up. This was obviously something she felt passionate about and something she was very curious about.
From the moment she started her final presentation to the class we were fully engaged. She opened with “often people ask me what it’s like to grow up with my sister, when I think about it, it is actually just normal for me, she is just my sister”
Chloe went on to explain that her inquiry was originally going to be collecting medical facts about life for her sister. She quickly realized how big her inquiry was going to get, and that she will be “always finding out more about life with her sister”
Her presentation went on to include video footage of her sister including some of the equipment used to help her, research on the declaration of human rights, how different countries approach caring for the disabled, statistics on money spent and how many people are effected, an interactive quiz so her audience could consider what they would do if themselves or someone close to them became disabled, an inspirational 3 minute documentary about two brothers and their close bond, plus much much more. Students and myself included were completely inspired by such love and care.
Chloe captivated and engaged her audience for 45 minutes. There is no doubt that the presentation has changed all of us in some small way.
I would like borrow from Chloe’s closing statement to end this post, it is such a simple yet powerful statement. “If you want to help a person with a disability the best thing you can do is help them to feel included in the world we live in”