We celebrate empowered and action-oriented learners at CIS on a daily basis, but the PYP exhibition is a culmination of all that and more. It’s a ‘rite of passage’ on the grade 6 learning journey where students get to express their beliefs, ideas, and courses of action on issues they were passionate about as PYP learners. Although the entire CIS teaching community guided our grade 6 students throughout the process, it was ultimately our students who shaped and defined their own learning. Let’s look at how their learning journey unfolded over 8 weeks.

To spur students into action, the ‘Grand Kick Off’ was launched on 23 February. Social entrepreneurs, activists, TedX speakers, and community experts such as professors and business owners were invited to conduct talks, seminars, and mini workshops at various locations throughout the campus for one day.

Knowing that it was important to act upon the knowledge they had been given, the students first chose a local, global or regional issue that they themselves were passionate about. They then researched this issue collaboratively in small groups. During the 8-week inquiry process that followed, students used specific skills such as research, thinking, social, self-management and communication to build and refine their knowledge. In a nutshell, they exemplified the attributes of the Learner Profile as knowledgeable inquirers, thinkers, communicators, and risk-takers - to name just a few.   

The evening of 8 May was the gala presentation for parents. That evening, parents were welcomed by a heartwarming performance by the grade 6 students. This took place in the atrium where meaningful Learner Profile totem sculptures created in art class had been displayed. Under the amazing guidance of the Arts team, the lights, sound and music perfectly highlighted the grade 6 students as the proud performers they were. You could tell that the parents were enjoying themselves as they swayed in time to the beautiful group song and the crooning performance by the acapella group of grade 6 students.

After the inspiring opening, it was time to explore the exhibition stalls, booths and desks that had been arranged strategically by the students in the grade 6 pods. To highlight the important messages in their presentations, many students used interactive surveys, games and activities, creative props and structures, as well as documentary productions that they created themselves. Parents and teachers from both CIS and other schools were awestruck by the confidence, depth of knowledge and expertise the grade 6 students showed as they talked about their inquiries like:    

  • sustainability and environmental issues (eg ocean pollution, coral reef protection, animal extinction and protection, access to clean water, global warming)

  • social morality and ethics (eg social identity, human rights, access to education, child labour, gender equality)

  • personal health and well-being (eg depression, food safety, healthy living, athletic lifestyle, drug use and abuse, terminal diseases)

  • culture and the arts (eg art therapy, music therapy)

  • technology (eg artificial intelligence, gaming addiction).

After the exhibition concluded, the students wrapped up their grade 6 milestone by reflecting on their experience, and carrying out the action projects and solutions that had materialised as a result of their enlightened learning.

As we look at the entire process of the PYP exhibition and how our grade 6 students have developed as empowered learners, we can only feel elated and proud as CIS community members. Thank you to parents, senior administration members, teachers, wise mentors, as well as external and internal community experts. Congratulations, grade 6, for deepening the meaning of why we are here as educators!

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