"Exhibition is...thinking outside the box, problem-solving, collaborating, researching; it is challenging, exciting, worthwhile, and powerful." So says grade 5 students when asked what exhibition truly means to them. But, what is the grade 5 exhibition exactly? The Primary Years Programme (PYP) Exhibition is a vital element ensuring student mastery of the transdisciplinary themes explored throughout their years of education. This should include examples of written work, oral presentations, technology usage, performances, and innovation throughout. During the last year of a PYP school's Programme of Inquiry (POI), students across the world are challenged to inquire authentically about an issue on a global and/or local scale that they can research, delve deeper into, and take action on.
For this academic year, grade 5 students explored topics within the lens of our central idea, "global citizens connect to their widening community in order to contribute for its development." As part of their inquiry, students were mentored by adults in the SIS community, including instructional and administrative staff at Jingshan and Bayside campuses. A further outreach was made within Shenzhen as students interviewed and worked alongside members of our community including at animal shelters and governmental agencies. Students were in charge of deciding on the cause they wished to investigate and the actions they wished to pursue. This year's chosen projects included a wide range of interests and content matter such as rescuing animals, preventing hacking or cyberbullying, eliminating various forms of pollution, promoting fairness and equity, & raising awareness for water accessibility in international communities.
Learners were engaged with our school's ESLRs as they communicated with their mentors, collaborated with their teammates in various leadership roles, researched independently and as a group, became critical thinkers throughout their decision-making and problem-solving processes, & promoted a deep level of global citizenship by taking action. Students demonstrated learner agency as they decided on the set-up for their gallery space in and around the classroom, resources they would be using during their presentation, and the manner in which they would engage their audience members. Students truly took ownership of their learning during the exhibition, showing great zeal with their missions and demonstrating exemplary abilities in handling mature content areas; thus, preparing these students for the transition from primary to secondary school.
As SIS continues the journey in developing our POI, the exhibition will continue to be planned, implemented, and hosted as an annual event. Grade 5 staff would like to send a huge thank you to Level 5 for allowing students to use such a wonderful and agile space in presenting their findings to the wider community, exhibition mentors for providing their knowledge and assistance throughout the process, parents for supporting students throughout their endeavors, SIS teachers for bringing their classes to exhibition, and our amazing PYP coordinator for ensuring every step ran smoothly. We simply can't wait to see what next year's fifth graders decide on and how exhibition at SIS will continue to evolve!
Peter Damroth | Grade 5 Teacher