Each year the opening of school means a fresh start and the setting of goals for the new academic year. It is also a time for students to meet their new teachers and to settle into their new classmates and the expectations in their new environments.
At D-PREP we have started the 2020-2021 school year, with high expectations for all of our students’ learning and the teachers have created really engaging and exciting inquiry-based projects that our students will experience during the first part of the year.
Inquiry-based learning is about exploring students’ natural curiosity and innate interests in learning. Studies show that 4 years olds ask between 250-350 questions a day, but this goes down drastically and by the time students are 10 years old they may ask under 75 questions a day.
At D-PREP, we want to keep students’ curiosity alive, as we strive to develop our students into life-long “Inquirers”, which is one of the key IB Learner Attributes.
So, parents can also help to keep the questioning that your child had when they were young alive and thriving throughout the primary grades. Warren Berger, the author of A More Beautiful Question, says that one of the key ways adults can support questioning is to model curiosity and to value questions.
Instead of asking a child, “What did you learn at school today,” a parent might ask, “What great question did you ask today?” If a child asks one of those great, deep questions that gets at why humans are even here, parents could dive in and explore the question with their child.
“You don’t have to have the answers. You just have to have the interest,” Berger said.
Finally, we had fabulous Back to School workshops in early September, where parents heard about the expectations for their children in each of their child’s specials classes, and were also able to learn the details about the language arts skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking), math skills, and each class’ Unit of Inquiry, which incorporates science and social studies skills, that are taught at each grade level.
Through engaging in hands-on learning experiences in their child’s classrooms, from sketching plants and creating seed collages in KG to building the highest towers with spaghetti and marshmallows in Grades 5/ 6, parents were able to see how and why our students get excited about learning at D-PREP.
Parent involvement in your children’s learning is one of the greatest indicators of students’ long-term success, so thanks to all the D-PREP parents who came to this Back to School Workshop and who have committed to supporting their child’s learning at home throughout the school year through regular reading, asking and promoting of questioning, and providing a quiet place to study at home!
Our partnership between home and school will guarantee maximum growth for each D-PREP child throughout the school year, as together we are so much stronger and more effective than working in isolation.
This message was posted in our Newsletter.
Pegasus Stories (Issues 1 – Volume 1)
Published on September 2020.
- More from Ms. Amy, here.