Skip links

Grade 5, 6 and 7: Planning for the future

Hello, dear readers. The Shimauchi campus is bustling with movement and echoing with students’ voices again as they returned to school from this week. The global pandemic is still ongoing, so we are taking precautions against the spread of the virus as much as possible, but it is nice to see and talk to students in person after two long months. 😃

This week mark the starts of the second Line of Inquiry of this school year. The Central idea is “Reflecting on great explorers of the past influences our own explorations today” and throughout the Unit, the students will inquire into the historically significant explorers, their motivation, goals and the equipment they used on their travels, the consequences of their travels and different ways that we can all follow their example and become explorers ourselves, in any area we are interested in. 🧳

After spending a lot of time in front of the computer during the past several weeks, the students seem to enjoy more relaxed activities that centered around assessing their previous knowledge, such as the quiz in which their job was to place famous landmark on a world map and a drawing activity in which they needed to imagine an explorer, with all of his or hers equipment, knowledge they posses and skills and learner profile attributes they exhibit. Next week, the students will look at case studies of famous explorers and discuss the technologies that they might find useful. 🧭

From this week, the four Grade 4 students will be joining us in afternoon lessons. They seemed a bit shy at the start of the week, but they relaxed by Thursday and all the grade levels worked together in researching and presenting different topics (stress, depression, peer pressure, social media, advertising, friendship) during our Social Studies lesson. In Science, we discussed the reasons sea currents and tides exist, in Art, we created our own artwork on the topic of “Connection” as entrants to an art competition organized by the Nakamura Keith Haring Foundation, in English Literature we presented the books we read at home and learned about hyperboles, while in Math, we continued practicing converting between fraction, percentages and decimal numbers. 🧮

Another fun event this week was the first in line of our rice and sweet beans growing field trips, organized by JA. The students visited a small farm in Azumino where they were taught how to prepare the soil and plant rice and sweet potatoes. The students worked very hard and seemed to enjoy the activities, even if the insects and mud that was around them discouraged some of them a bit. By the end of the day, though, everyone was happy to have done a lot of work and generously accepted a gift from JA staff: beautiful, naturally grown onions and lettuce. 🥬

This event was only the first out of four and the students will visit the same farm three more times in order to take care of and, ultimately, pick their own rice and sweet potatoes. This will prove useful for their Unit of Inquiry learning as well, as one of this school year’s Units will revolve around food and its production and distribution, and another one will focus on markets and the way we use money. We have become experts at long-term planning for the future! 🥔

Please click on the photos and check out the video linked below. Take care over the weekend and see you soon! 😇