At the end of the school year, I interviewed all MYP teachers again and solicited their feedback to improve the MYP student induction and orientation program. Generally speaking, teachers felt that it was a great way for students to become familiar with each other and feel excited about the new academic school year. Lots of professional dialogues also occurred during this time between new teachers and the returning staff, and institutional knowledge was shared. A consensus was reached and of course, there is always room to make something better.
Areas for development:
- Reduce the learning activities as time seemed rush for students to complete all tasks and there was not enough time for reflection
- Create opportunities for students to develop approaches to learning skills that are essential for their classrooms or school to ensure a successful start of the new school year
In additional to the ares for development, we also would like to use this time to introduce the school's new initiatives to students so that they have a big picture of what their school year might be like.
- Family system: each adult will be a family head who takes care of 10-12 students. Families will meet 15 minutes each day. During the two-day programme, Students will meet with their families and 'their head of family' will take students explore the following questions: a) Why the family system? b) What is the function of the family system; c) Who are we? How will we take care of each other?
New interdisciplinary learning model: KIS will implement a new model of interdisciplinary learning and teaching in the year of 2019-2020. Students will be engaged with IDU learning for a week approximately rather than doing the IDU across 8-9 weeks. To help students to think in this space, I have adopted design thinking materials from the d.school from Stanford University. If you have not discover the d.school, it's not too late for you to take an advantage of their wonderful resources. The Hat Mania design challenge idea is inspired by Jason Reagin (@diskon4no). The materials are easy to obtain and requires very little preparation. Through this design challenge, I would also like to involve students:
- to think about command terms and continue to build their understanding the assessed objectives;
- to learn how to work collaboratively (use the tools of the team contract and the team project management log);
- to practice presentation skills by pitching their ideas to the 'shark tank';
- to explore interdisciplinary learning through the model of project-based learning. Students are asked to outline knowledge, skills and understanding from two different subjects to create the hat. I also use @AdrianWJ's idea and want to encourage students to explore the benefit of using two subjects to create a product. (Discussions can be found here.) At the end of the design challenge, students are invited to tell us more via a Google survey what they would like to study as their interdisciplinary unit. Teachers can then use the student input when crafting the interdisciplinary units. This is one way to incorporate student voice and choice in the curriculum development.
Intensions of the MYP student induction and orientation
- foster self-awareness;
- building experiences;
- expanding empathy potential;
- enhancing international mindedness.
Instead of naming it MYP student induction and orientation programmes, I decided to call it MYP Jumpstart 2019-2020. This idea was taken from the book, The Eduprotocol Field Guide. Lots of great resources for the first week of school can also be found on the website. I hope through two-day interactions and experiential learning experiences, students are motivated and excited for the new academic school year.
- d.school, https://dschool.stanford.edu/resources
- Making Group Contracts. Center for Teaching Excellence, University of Waterloo.
- The Design Thinker, https://www.thedesignthinker.com.au
- PBLWorks resources, https://my.pblworks.org/resources
- Whatdoesnotchange. “SYSTEMS THINKING - ICEBERG.” What Doesn't Change, 11 Apr. 2018, whatdoesntchange.com/post/172828837654/systems-thinking-iceberg.