Thursday, 18 July 2019

Key Concepts Review: PYP Classroom

Oh key concepts! They can be a little tricky for our PYP students to understand. I made a conscious effort this year to focus more on helping my students to understand the key concepts. I could really see a difference. Here are some things that we did.

The key concepts are on our burning questions/wonder wall. As students added their questions, they put them beside the relevant key concept. If they were unsure (which they often were), we would have a class discussion to figure out with which concept it best fit.

To explore them even further, I took inspiration from this amazing blog post by ProDivas. This activity could be done at any point in the year with any unit of inquiry. Here's what we did.

Firstly, we had already done a lot of research into the circulatory system. As a whole-class activity, we brainstormed what we have learned about the circulatory system relating to each key concept. Here's what they came up with! (That student's mother in the reflection box is a doctor who came to school to speak to them about the circulatory and respiratory systems.)

I then split the students into small groups and gave them an A3 sheet and a copy of some their questions from the burning questions wall. They cut out each question and decided as a group which key concept it fit under. We had a group chat to discuss how we categorised each question.

Finally I divided the students into interest groups. Each student had previously chosen another system about which they would like to inquire further. I shared a  template with them on Google Slides. You'll see the three concepts we were focusing on in that unit of inquiry have stars beside them. 

All students used their iPads to collaboratively update their slide with questions relating to each key concept. This was really useful for guiding their inquiry. If you'd like to use these templates (for free), pop on over to Google Drive and make a copy to edit and use in your own classroom.

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