The implementation of the PYP at the College observes the philosophy and values as expressed in the Mission Statements of both Athens College and the IB, while remaining respectful of the National Curriculum.
The Elementary Schools have completed the application and pilot phases of the PYP and are in the process of applying for authorization. At the same time, all our educators regularly undergo training both in Greece and abroad so as to ensure optimal implementation of the programme.
Below is an indicative example of the development of a Transdisciplinary Unit of Inquiry:
TRANSDISCIPLINARY UNIT OF INQUIRY
Transdisciplinary theme: Who We Are
Unit Title: “Am I what I chose to be?”
This unit explores our nature, our beliefs and values, our physical and mental health, human relationships, and our obligations.
Personal, everyday choices play a role in a person’s well-being.
Lines of Inquiry:
Our daily habits affect our health.
The space we live in serves our daily needs.
Human relationships contribute to “well-being”.
Form: Students realize that the space we live in affects well-being; it has a specific form and specific characteristics.
Function: Students initially learn how the human body works and then identify those habits that provide longevity and health.
Connection: Students gradually realize that our daily lives and our well-being are also affected by our relationships with others.
|IB Learner Profile|
Through the transdisciplinary unit:
|ATL (Approaches to Learning) Skills|
EXAMPLES OF TRANSDISCIPLINARY ACTIVITIES
- Locate, analyze and organize data from a scientific article and literary texts on the nutritional value of breakfast, organization of the house, and human relations.
- Write a text (argumentative): “Ready meals or home cooked meals?”
- Students discuss and record the pros and cons of home-cooked food and ready-made food.
- Experiments related to how the respiratory and circulatory systems function, and written instructions for the better performance of those systems.
- Presentation on smoking by the school physician.
- Organization of an event in the school theater aimed at 5th and 6th grade students on the consequences of smoking.
- Information on student rights and obligations as consumers.
- The creation of a data chart showing the organization of daily life in different parts of the world and the description of an imaginary room in one of those places.
- Use and analysis of historical sources related to the organization of daily life during the Ottoman rule.
- Creation of a mind map related to family relationships: Rights – Obligations – Challenges, from the Elementary School 6th grade Social and Political Education textbook
- Cultural program on the use of the weaving loom in the 19th century so that students are able to understand the importance that people placed on the organization of their daily lives many years ago.
In the School’s Library:
- By reading the book “The Lie,” by Georges Sari, students realize that their choices affect their interpersonal relationships. Additionally, by reading the book “Journey to the Cave,” by Giannis Papasarantos, students learn to change the way they think, to review their thoughts about people, and to examine their existence from different perspectives.
In English classes:
- Students identify what emotional, physical, and psychological well-being is.
- Students inquire into the interconnectedness of the most important body systems.
- Students discuss food choices and exercise habits.
- Students come to a consensus based on the current school menu and make suggestions during class/group discussions.
- Students “interview” a human organ.
In French and German classes:
- Students recommend a weekly menu for the school’s dining hall based on healthy eating.
- Students plan and make an oral presentation of a healthy meal.
- Students take a photograph of their breakfast, describe what it consists of, and discuss the importance of forming healthy eating habits for breakfast.
- Students play the food recognition game.
- Students create mind maps on nutrition, sports-exercise, and wellness.
- Students construct a food pyramid.
- Students draw a poster that reflects healthy lifestyles.
- Students describe a normal day that includes activities that bring about health and well-being.
- In IT classes:
- Students calculate the calories of their weekly breakfast using Excel’s calorie counter.
In Arts classes:
- Students describe or illustrate their thoughts and feeling using activities from the Free Activities Workshops.
- Using a mind map, students record their choices, where emotions and logic are combined and connected to these choices as if on a map or their lives and their selves.
In Physical Education classes:
- Students train for the cross-country race.
Summative Assessment Activity:
Creation of a booklet for the entire student body containing instructions for the All Day School Excursion. In this booklet, students give instructions and tips to other students on how to enjoy their day. They are expected to include advice on the types of foods they can bring along, different ways in which to organize their space, and how to handle interpersonal relationships so that everyone can have a pleasant time.
ACTION resulting from the Unit of Inquiry
- Present and discuss smart choices with first graders.
- Come up with rules and set goals for self-improvement.
- Look carefully at dilemmas and make decisions.
- Influence their parents to change their attitudes and stop smoking.
- Design and create posters to persuade their classmates.
Students comprehend that our choices affect our lives. They realize that man has the ability to choose, to build his own values, to determine his self-esteem, his relationships, and his responsibilities. In the end, they conclude that “I am who I choose to be.”
AGENCY developed through the Unit of Inquiry
- Students ask questions that are used to conduct research (e.g. What is the nutritional value of specific favorite foods that are eaten for breakfast?)
- They suggest and make improvements to their daily breakfast (They begin to think about possible changes in their breakfast choices).
- Students suggest changes to the layout of their classroom (some of which may be implemented).
- Students create an instruction booklet for the All Day School Excursion. They share it with their classmates and take snapshots of different moments during the excursion to see whether their suggestions were implemented.
Students become aware of the different perspectives on smoking (tobacco industry, state, public health, environment, passive smokers, smoker) and consider the value of choices that lead to a balanced lifestyle.
Authentic learning: from the classroom to real life
At home, children and their parents:
- Record their family’s eating habits and discuss which ones they could improve.
- Discuss possible changes to the their room in order to make the space more enjoyable and functional.
- Discuss different ways to deal with difficulties that may arise when communicating with friends or other members of the family.
IB Programmes Director: Eleni Vasileiou
Athens College PYP Coordinator: Georgia Mega
Psychico College ΡΥΡ Coordinator: Panagiotis Dedes