Park Showcase of Learning Event

Park Showcase of Learning Event
Posted on 12/23/2018
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Twice each year, our #HSSD Park Magnet IB World School opens classrooms across grades for the Showcase of Learning event. Students display their work along walls, present special projects to parents and guests, and reflect on what they have learned during the semester. Parents and guests are encouraged to engage with students and ask questions about their learning. First grade students paired the event with an opportunity to raise funds for the Garland County Habitat for Humanity.

Fourth grade students presented emergency presentation projects to HSSD Board Members, who participated in the Showcase ahead of the December Board Meeting. Students selected any type of natural disaster that they were interested in - including hurricanes, tornados, tsunamis, wildfires, and more - and developed a full presentation about the emergency events to include research about cause and impact, photos, safety strategies, and preparation recommendations. They presented their work via Power Point formats by computers arranged at each desk.

Students in the first grade hallway used the Showcase to display a special “Dream House” project. As part of their Unit of Inquiry on Communities, students read “The Big, Orange Splot,” which is a story about the value of being unique and embracing how each of us has individual opinions and preferences. The main character in the book makes an impression on an entire community by being different from everyone else. After reading the book, students designed their own “Dream House” in illustrations displayed up and down the hallway. The images were to reflect their dreams, hopes, wishes, and things that make them happy. In an excerpt from the book, students used this as their inspiration for illustrations, which they designed in art class: “My house is me, and I am it. My house is where I like to be and it shows all my dreams.”  Parents learned how the lesson was woven into technology as well, as students learned about coding using algorithms. They were prompted to put the parts of the story in the correct sequence using a story map. Using arrows, they then wrote out the code on the “Big Orange Splot” story maps. Then, they programmed Bee Bots (Bee-Bots are small, colorful, bee-shaped robots that can be used by educators in the teaching of counting, sequencing, estimation, problem-solving, and more) around a grid to sequence the story. Parents were also invited to vote on which Dream House images were the winners in the following categories: Most Dreamy Design, Creative Colors, and Dynamite Details. To connect the project to the Hot Springs community, while parents were voting, students asked for a donation to the Garland County Habitat for Humanity. This fundraising effort will continue through January. Parents and community guests are welcome to stop by the first grade hallway and be part of this activity - honoring student work and supporting an invaluable charitable partner to the Hot Springs community.

Park Magnet is one of only three International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Program School in Arkansas for students K-6th grade. One of the details that sets IB schools apart is curriculum based in units of inquiry, which include a 6-8 week exploration of a concept like “Communities.” Units of inquiry prompt educators to include field trips, guest speakers, special projects, and community involvement to build the “real world” connections, just as they do here with natural disaster projects and safety strategies, and Dream Houses with the Garland County Habitat for Humanity fundraiser.

HSSD staff and board members are proud of all work displayed across grades at the Showcase of Learning event. Our students are amazing! Learn more about Park Magnet IB World School, here.

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