Dear WIS Community,
With our commitment to dynamic and engaging learning environments at WIS, this academic year, one of our key goals is to craft compelling units of inquiry that nurture a love for learning. You might have already read about a compelling unit in last week’s Oryx, and I would like to shine a special spotlight on this particularly inspiring unit from Grade 2 and how it relates to our goal of compelling inquiry-based learning and our WIS Principles.
Compelling Unit in Grade 2: "Innovation and Invention Can Transform the Way People Live"
In Grade 2, students have been delving into the captivating world of innovation and invention. The central idea, "Innovation and invention can transform the way people live," has been the guiding force behind this exploration. To understand what an integrated unit might look like, together with the standards of learning, I have pasted the unit description below.
As you can see in the unit description, this unit is designed to ensure that our students are learning by actively participating in the process. Engaging activities have been integrated, offering a multidisciplinary approach that transcends individual subjects- from science experiments to creative arts, and from language skills to critical thinking exercises.
Challenges Met with Creative Thinking
The emphasis is on developing essential thinking skills by solving real-world challenges and, with the guidance of their teachers, developing their creativity and problem-solving abilities to overcome them.
The Book of Inventions
As a culmination of their exploration, the Grade 2 class compiled a captivating "Book of Inventions." I invite you to click on the image below to enjoy these!
Aligning with our WIS Principles
The Grade 2 unit on "Innovation and Invention Can Transform the Way People Live" aligns with our WIS Learning Principles for the following reasons:
The emphasis on a clear and intentional purpose in learning is evident as students engage in real-world problem-solving within the unit. By addressing challenges and creating a "Book of Inventions," learners not only make meaning but also understand 'the why' behind their actions. This reflects the principle of learning being a process driven by purpose, encouraging students to begin with the end in mind.
The unit promotes a sense of community, embracing diversity and fostering relationships. As students collaborate, they demonstrate the values of valuing all individuals with equal dignity and being good teammates.
The unit also encourages personal ownership of the learning process, promoting responsible actions, reflection, and introspection.
The emphasis on exploration, wonder, and creativity aligns with our belief in the importance of lifelong inquiry, fostering a curiosity-driven approach to learning.
Lastly, the unit's consideration of the impact on resources and sustainability reflects our commitment to meeting present needs without compromising the well-being of future generations. This compelling unit embodies the core values and principles that define education at Windhoek International School.
Compelling units of inquiry lay the foundation for a lifelong passion for learning. As we continue our journey inspired by the principles of Kurt Hahn (see our Director’s wonderful article on this), we look forward to witnessing more moments of discovery and innovation unfold within our school community.
Wishing you all a week filled with curiosity and exploration!
Marcelle van Leenen
Primary School Principal