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Extra, Extra, Extra!!!

Concept Thinking to the Core

Jul 18 2016

What is the relationship between living things and systems? How do the elements of a system interact and relate? What are the factors that determine that there be harmony in a system? These are but a few of the questions that third grade students of Gimnasio del Norte thought about during the fifth unit of inquiry “Who We Are”.

The unit began with a provocation activity in which the students participated in an outdoor breathing circuit. After completing all the stations, the kids shared their perceptions about how their breathing patterns changed in a variety of contexts –singing, talking, exercising and relaxing. Among others, the 9 to 10 year-olds identified the role of their body systems and, more specifically, the elements composing them, in the variations in their breathing patterns. This self-awareness was meant to be stimulated in preparation for the learning experiences that would follow. Indeed, the concepts of connection, function, systems and harmony were “thought to the core” in the coming weeks. According to 3B Laura Sofia Manjarres Espitia´s parents “In a practical manner, while studying the English vocabulary, Laura gave various examples of harmony and system and of the relationship between people and things. Laura now distinguishes and associates the elements that make up the systems in her surroundings (…)”.

This fifth unit of inquiy included three field trips: The first to Lego® Fun Fest at Corferias, a second to the Luis Angel Arango Library to watch a concert, and finally a guided adventure to the Jaime Duque Park. The three outings were followed by their corresponding reflections in the journals or “exit cards”, giving the students the opportunity to analyze the entertainment, musical and ecological systems in light of the lines of inquiry. Additionally, and due to the Language Day celebration organized by the Spanish and English departments of the school in April, the students had the opportunity to watch the play “Musketeers by Chance” by the theater group Buenos Aires Players, brought, in English, directly to the Gimnasio del Norte coliseum; another wonderful opportunity to have fun with the concepts.

The locomotor system, families around the world, ancient number systems, governments, the making of a comic strip and the mimicking of nature for innovation –function from harmony- were explored. From the area of visual arts, students were able to relate the concept of system to life and to the work of Leonardo Da Vinci who through artistic drawings based on human anatomy studied the body. “In this learning experience we used modeling clay busts (heads) to raise awareness of the organs and the differences between people, focusing also on personality and the form taken according to the concepts and trends in society” says Bibiana Rojas, primary school art teacher. From the area of theater and dance, the students worked an exercise called Acrosport that combines the discipline of floor gymnastics, acrobatics, dance, theater, music, space management and rhythm, managing to generate coupling body systems in a presentation.

As always, students were encouraged to lead their own learning experiences, sharing related readings and putting together an obstacle race, among others. What a great way to learn!

At the Lego® Fun Fest at Corferias

Diagnostic evaluation in which the thinking routine “See, think, wonder” was implemented. After being exposed to images of various systems, students brainstormed answers to questions such as “What is needed for a family to be in harmony?”, “What is needed for my body to function well?” and “What is needed for a sports team get good results?

Learning centers in which students explored various family, numeric and government systems through videos, readings and investigation.gradoterceroarticulo


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