We are Communicators

This week, the students began a new Unit of Inquiry, How We Organize Ourselves.  

Our central idea is:

Communication connects communities and individuals.

It is an inquiry into:

Forms of communication

Tools used for communication  

How individuals access information and connect to each other

How current technology changes the way people communicate


The Grade 2s began with a provocation to help them understand how important it is to communicate respectfully as well as how difficult it can be to communicate when you can’t speak or don’t know the language. The children played a card game in four small groups – without speaking or using written words. The leaders of the group were responsible for reading the rules of the game ahead of time and then teaching the game to their group – but this all had to be done without speaking!

G2 Jarnga

After playing 3-4 more rounds, we stopped and talked about our experiences, problems and how we felt while playing the game.

– I felt like I was going to explode.  I just wanted to speak but no one understood me. I felt sorry because sometimes we didn’t take time to communicate, we just started playing and some people were confused.

– I felt like I was going to burst out with words.

– It felt very funny because whenever people started to speak it looked like they were very frustrated.

– I was trying to move my mouth so they can read my lips and know what I was going to say. It was really easy when I drew a pictures, then people knew exactly what I meant.

– It felt weird because I couldn’t speak and I thought I wouldn’t be able to speak anymore.

– It felt weird because when there is no talking I didn’t know what people meant. It was harder in a bigger group.

– It was funny because I wanted to know why did we not talk and it was strange.

– It was hard to explain what I was going to say.

– It was peaceful.

– My mouth felt weird when I wasn’t supposed to talk.

Later in the week, the children attended special communication workshops to learn about and try out different forms of communication that people use everyday for different purposes. Miss Czubak shared her knowledge about secret codes and ciphers as well as symbols. Ms. McCreath prepared workshops on sign language and reading maps, and Mr. Laing taught the children about Braille. During these workshops, the Grade 2s learned about a variety of tools that are used to communicate, how different kinds of communication are organized, how current technology changes they way we communicate, and how to use different types of communication. Please click on the album below to see photos of the students in action.

G2 Workshop

Here is some of what the students said they would like to do next:

– Try and do all these things and show our moms and dads and friends. We can try and talk to our friends using this type of communication.

– Maybe now I can communicate with people who are deaf and write a letter to someone who is blind.

– I wonder if we can communicate with shapes.

– Now I want to make my own communication and teach it to friends so I can talk in different ways. I want to know more about how people communicated a long time ago.

– Now I know tools that I did not know before.


Grade 2 Communicates their Learning

This week, Grade 2 prepared to teach each other what they learned during their personal inquiries into how the lifestyle choices we make affect our health. Before sharing what they had learned, the students prepared themselves by thinking about the question: How can we communicate our learning?

We asked the student to share their ideas and this about the following:

What do we want to do? What communication skills will we need to achieve our purpose?
  • Teach others what we have learned
  • Help others be healthy
  • Getting information from others to help us stay healthy
  • Be knowledgeable
  • Speak clearly and loudly
  • Don’t be shy
  • Be prepared -Think about what you are going to say.
  • Concentrate on what you are saying – Don’t get distracted
  • Be a little bit nervous so that you really try to do a good job
  • Have a calm body
  • Listen with our whole body
  • Use expression and hand gestures to explain

The students were very interested in hearing what their classmates had learned.  They enjoyed teaching each other as well.

Teaching others about our inquiries in to how the choices we make can affect our health

As a reflection, we asked the students to share their ideas :

What was our purpose? How did we effectively use our communication skills? What Learner Profile attitudes and attributes did we display? How?
  • Share our learning
  • To learn from other people
  • To make people healthier and stronger
  • To listen to others
  • To concentrate on what the people who are teaching are saying
  • We were teachings each other what we learned
  • We talked with expression
  • We were respectful because we listend and cared about what the others were saying
  • I focused on what I wanted to teach
  • I thought about teaching everything that I found out
  • I was always looking at the person who was teaching me
  • We were communicators because we were using expression
  • We are inquirers because we are learning about new things
  • We are inquirers because we were trying to find out how to be healthy



Personal Inquiries…

The students in Grade 2 have been inquiring into a topic related to health that they are personally interested in. They began their inquiry by documenting what they already know about their topic. Then they wrote down questions and wonderings about the topic as well as where they will look to find answers as well as what materials or tools they might need along the way.

The students are going to teach each other what they have learned during their personal inquiries. To plan for their inquiries, we asked the students to decide a) what they would like to teach others about and, b) what they want others to learn.  Here are some of their ideas:

I want to teach others about…..


Hygiene and germs

Good bacteria

Bad bacteria


Sugar and Nutrition





I want others to learn…..

What food has good bacteria.

More about hygiene.

What good bacteria does.

How germs make us sick.

Where germs come from.

What bacteria does to our body.

What you can do to avoid bad germs.

What you should and shouldn’t eat.

How we get cavities.

How sugar causes cavities.

How we can fight bad bacteria.

How germs grow.

What foods help our body grow.

How vitamins help the body fight germs.

How does good food help us fight germs.

Why sugar is bad for our body.

That relaxation makes the body strong.

How we can stay clean.

What we can do to relax.

The children reflect on their research sessions by thinking about the following:


As the children work through the inquiry cycle, they are devising new questions, thinking about their thinking, looking for and conducting experiments to collect data, asking experts (i.e. nurse, teacher, kitchen staff) for advice and help, taking notes, drawing diagrams, making observations, taking photos to document their progress and more.
The students are also using this new information to create a video of a perfectly healthy morning as part of our learning about telling time to the hour, half hour and quarter hour.  See the albums below for photos of the students in action this week.

Looking for Answers to Our Personal Inquiries

Personal inquiries

Creating our Perfectly Healthy Morning Videos

Making a video of a perfectly healthy morning