To provide parents with an understanding of how distinctive enrichment initiatives are an integral part of our school’s invisible curriculum and also how they enable us to teach and inculcate in the students, crucial life-skills, an interactive session- “Learning to Learn – Enrichment Initiatives” was organized on 23rd July, 2016.
Since, this year, the focus was on Enrichment Initiatives, various sessions were organized to provide parents with a comprehensive understanding of the different enrichment initiatives taking place at NiBS. All discussions and sharings were supplemented with PPTs and videos showing students participating in these enrichment initiatives.
The first session for the day was a Phonetics Workshop, which aimed at giving parents an insight into the way we teach phonics at NiBS. Activities and resources used in the classrooms were shared and the parents also got an opportunity to participate in the reading drills. Apart from this, the parents and teachers collaboratively came up with strategies to support a child’s language development.
In the sessions on ‘Choice Time’ and ‘Show and Tell’, the parents were apprised of the array of activities that children participate in, to utilise their time effectively and enhance their learning as well. The parents were happy to know how through ‘Show and Tell’, their child develops his/her speaking skills and confidence. The teachers also discussed how picture and object talk allow the children to express themselves with greater clarity and fluency. The session on Care Time, a programme that provides children with an opportunity to Ask, Review and Explore different topics to enrich their learning, had parents participating in authentic tasks that keep their children actively and joyfully engaged in school.
Another enrichment tool, ‘Circle Time’ was introduced with a warm up activity, in tandem with our Annual theme ‘Around the World in 200 Days’. Playing musical chair with an interesting twist of continents, travel and world tour had the adults giggling like young children. The teachers took up the sensitive issue of bullying through a role play. The class pet was used to address the issue, start a discussion and share solutions. The parents appreciated this wonderful initiative that provides children with a comfortable and safe environment to express their opinions and feelings without any reservations.
Participating in Assemblies is a great medium to boost confidence, creative talents and communication skills of children and this enrichment initiative was also showcased on this day. The different types of assemblies, the entire process from conceptualization to culmination and the skills imbibed by children were explained to the parents. The queries regarding the assemblies were also taken up at the end of the session.
The importance of Theme Based Learning as an effective enrichment initiative was also highlighted. Along with a discussion on the benefits of theme based learning, teachers shared the different themes that have been taken up over the years and how the annual theme is integrated with different disciplines, activities and events across the year. The projects done by the students, photographs related to the theme and a wide range of activities provided parents with a better understanding of how the annual theme is explored with the students, As this year we are going around the world, the country of South Korea was taken as an example. National symbols, Korean greetings and fun facts about South Korea were shared with the parents. A Korean Corner was set up for the parents, where they tried on the traditional dress ‘Hanbok’ and played the traditional game ‘Tuho’. Towards the end, they also participated in a fun quiz to test what they had learned about South Korea. The excited and cheerful parents could well relate to how theme based learning is much more fun and enriching for their kids than traditional curriculum.
The enrichment initiatives taken up by the Middle School team were Trips, Visits and workshops, Clubs and NIE newspaper, Learning Together classes, SEWA project, Yoga, TAP (Think and Ponder) Time and Cleanliness Drive. Group discussions, PowerPoint presentations and videos, brainstorming sessions and exciting activities, and photo galleries became helpful mediums for parents to get familiar with these initiatives at NiBS. What made the sessions all the more meaningful was the sharing done by the students themselves!
A Readers’ corner was also set up for the parents. Reading sessions followed by creative activities including a puppet show proved to be beautiful windows to the world of books explored and enjoyed by children at NiBS.
At the senior level, the focus this year was on two major enrichment activities- ‘Life Skill Advisories’ and ‘Independent Study’. Two major components of Life Sills Advisories- Planning and Managing Emotions – were taken as examples to offer a glimpse of this Mentorship Programme especially designed for our senior students. Students displayed their projects and also shared their learning through these activities and initiatives.
‘Learning to Learn’ indeed proved once again that learning is more fun, engaging, relevant and challenging at NiBS!