In a great EduTwitter chat hosted by Levi Allison (you find his great new blog here) recently a number of IB educators were discussing community involvement in the PYP Exhibition. With such a powerful learning experience, we want to find ways to reach beyond the walls of our school and into our local and global communities.
Today, in one of our most powerful community connections, our 5th grade students met with the Resident Representative for the UNDP in Kuwait. Ms. Hideko and her colleague Mr. Ali were able to discuss the goals in depth with the children. They shared the purpose of each goal, some of the challenges around it and pushed students to think differently. Hearing from members of the UNDP is incredibly powerful. It helps our students understand that the UN SDGs are not ‘just a school project’. They get to see that their learning, inquiry and actions have real world validity. They also get to see some of the work being done to achieve each goal. This takes the PYPX beyond school and makes it a real life challenge to work on.
One of the things Ms. Hideko told our PYPX students was
“Don’t underestimate the power of small actions you can take that add up to big changes”
When asking students to work on problems such as the SDGs it’s important we strike a balance between understanding the importance and urgency of the issues such as #ClimateCrisis and empowering students to feel like they can make an impact.
Our PYP Exhibition is up and running, having launched in the same format as last year. Moving forward, our students will now develop their own inquiries into the SDGs. We encourage them to ‘Think Globally, Act Locally’. This balances being aware of the global scale of the goals, whilst taking action that has impact in their own community as a way to see change happening.
I’m excited to see what this year’s PYPX students will be inspired to do, and how in turn they will inspire us too.