Goodbye, Adeus, Addio

Dear Prep 4.3 parents,

This is the hardest part of my job – saying goodbye. Every year I wave goodbye to my students after many days and hours spent in their company exploring, investigating and inquiring into a multitude of wonders, curiosities and interests. It has been a pleasure to be part of your child’s early learning journey and it gives me joy and peace to know that although we are saying goodbye and I may not ever see them again, a special bond imprinted by the relationship we’ve created and nurtured along the school year will never be broken since memories last forever!

I wish all my students well in their future learning journeys.

From myself,

Love and Light to you All *

Ms. Peterson

Transition Visits

Dear Prep 4.3 parents,

For the past two weeks the students have been visiting their prospective PYP specialist teachers and future classrooms. Although this is often an exciting time for many, it is also a time where anxiety kicks in, therefore, making it imperative to discuss the topic of ‘changes’, and how this is an important aspect of human life.

Moreover, I can’t believe that there is officially 4 days to go until the end of this academic year!Presently, I could not feel prouder of all the students achievements and how mature and ready for further learning they are!

From myself,

Wishing you all a bright weekend!

A Myriad of Learning Invitations, that led to True and Meaningful Learning Encounters

Dear Prep 4.3 parents

Last week I wanted to have reported on Mr. Francois visit but due to report writing, which demands for a lot time, I had to defer the blog post about the experience for this week.

I’m sure almost all of you have heard from your child about Mr. Fancois, and the fantastic work he does here in Luanda to support the local and wider environment through collection of glass bottles and rubbish on beaches, to the creation of newly recycled glass bottles.

Prior to Mr. Francois visit the students had engaged in meaningful discussions about How our World Works. These interactions revealed students notions and the strong perspectives they held in relation to this transdisciplinary theme. There was certainly a lot of questions that emerged as we experimented, tried, tested and investigated myriads of learning invitations, while trying to unravel the role of living things, and comprehend the detrimental implications certain actions or events can have on our planet.

Below you can read a transcript of students responses to the question of: What have we learned so far?

  • I’ve learned that trees give us air – Rebecca
  • We’ve talked about living things and they breathe – Rehan
  • People have each other and our planet earth – Delaney
  • The sun gives us light – Aliya
  • Recycling is important but my family doesn’t recycle at all – Hudson
  • The sun gives us energy – Andersen
  • When trash goes on the floor our planet gets sad – Enrique
  • That people kill animals and they dye too. Some animals needs a home and need to eat plants. Eliora

When students were asked about the direction our learning should take, there was an unanimous call to further our inquiries into recycling; hence Mr. Francois visit seemed like the perfect opportunity to help consolidate all the learning that had been accomplished thus far.

The learning encounter was a success and the students were able to learn first-hand about the glass recycling process that takes place here in Luanda. Nevertheless, Mr. Francois also brought to our attention new understandings such as the meaning of the recycling logo, but best of all, the clarification of some of the assertive claims and pertaining questions students had before his visit.

  • Where does trash goes?
  • In Angola people throw rubbish on the floor and don’t recycle
  • Why does rubbish gets separated?
  • Where does the trash from the water goes to?
  • Where does landfill garbage goes?

Following Mr. Francois influential visit we reflected on what we knew before and what we came to know after; students explanations demonstrate the remarkable assimilation of learning bestowed upon by this event.

BEFORE

  • Landfill are places where trash goes to
  • People don’t recycle in Angola they put trash everywhere
  • Some things have a recycling sign

AFTER

  • Landfills are waste of trash drilled in the earth
  • Landfills mean we don’t recycle
  • We recycle glass in Angola
  • There recycling logo tells you the recycling way of starting and going around

This documentation of learning gives a true account of how children can learn through play; how their interests and curiosities motivates them and leads to authentic, meaningful learning. Consequently, shifting the focus from teaching to learning, and from the final outcome to the process of something that is relevant to them!

Wishing you a playful weekend!

So how has learning evolved in our classroom?

Dear Prep 4.3 parents,

The students have been actively co-constructing learning about our world for the past five weeks and there is no sign of stopping! The students have been researching, comparing, analysing and evaluating what powers our planet and sets it apart from other planets; what are living things and the role they play in our world; where does rubbish goes to and if it is at all recycled here in Angola, hey there is so much to wonder and discover about this magnificent planet of ours!

Most recently we have begun to debate about what’s our responsibility towards our planet and what choices we can make to ensure future sustainability and conservation. Next week, we will be welcoming a visitor from Vidrul (glass recycling company) who will come to discuss with the students the type of recycling that happens here in Luanda and what we can all do to support this world-wide cause because according to the students: ‘We want to learn more about recycling’ – and so it is!

Inquirer: I’m curious and enjoy learning. I try to find out new things!

A baby bird that made our classroom his home for a couple of hours. We love the constant contact with nature that’s available here in Angola!

Balanced: My friends and I like to do many different things using our minds and bodies

Reflective: When I think about my learning; I want to learn more

Risk-taker: Life is an adventure and I like to try new things

Thinker: I can solve problems in different ways and imagine new ideas

Be sure to drop by our blog next week so you can find out more!

Wishing you a mindful weekend.

Best regards,

Ms. Peterson

We love a good surprise!

Dear Parents,

There’s nothing more exciting than to be surprised by something good, and that’s exactly how we started our past school week. On Monday student’s received a special visitor: Eliora’s bunny!

Students were clearly curious about what food the bunny ate as well as why he had red eyes. Students also demonstrated appreciation for the calmness the bunny’s presence brought them, and with that, decided to name him – mindful bunny; evidently, making connections and transferring the knowledge they have gained throughout the school year about mindfulness practices, on to this experience.

This encounter opened yet another door into our inquiry of How the World Works, as students began to probe how living things are connected to our world and their potential roles in our planet.