“Challenges are what makes life interesting; Overcoming them is what makes life meaningful”-Joshua J. Marine.
The educators lived by this quote for most part of this term with several unforeseen holidays declared for schools in the NCR. Technology became the backbone for the process of teaching and learning as teachers took Skype lessons, used flipped classroom strategies and provided the digital platform to students to collaborate, communicate and continue their learning journey.
As a part of Practical Scheme of Work for Diploma Programme, various virtual labs were used to enhance the teaching learning process in the class.
Virtual Lab 1- Polymerase chain reaction
- Polymerase Chain Reaction(PCR) is one of the most advanced techniques used now-a-days in various biological and forensic investigations. It is neither feasible to equip our school labs with such expensive equipment nor to have students visit such big labs each time to witness the mechanism. Hence, exploring virtual labs enhanced student learning and saved time.
- On account of unscheduled closure of school, the teacher used a virtual lab for lessons. The students were able to access the link through Managebac and get a hands-on training to understand the process. Students were asked to write an investigative report to discuss the hypothesis, variables and conclusion of the techniques used after they had watched a simulation of the task on PCR. This also prepared them for their Internal Assessments.
- The students extracted DNA in the lab, understood the structure and mechanism and then explored the various steps involved in the functioning of PCR through this virtual lab.
Virtual Lab 2- ELISA technique
Virtual Lab 3- Stages of mitosis and cancer and calculating mitotic index
MAKING THINKING VISIBLE
Students of DP 1 created mind maps to highlight the reasons that led to change in a business plan. After creating a visual representation of their thoughts, students brainstormed the situations that led to such changes. Use of Coggle as a tool helped students to reflect and represent their ideas in an organized manner and further develop visible thinking.
THEATRE: HAMLET INNOVATION PROJECT
In an era of some of the finest education pedagogies, we often use the term differentiated learning in order to cater to children who may not learn through conventional ways.
This year we attempted something similar in the world of theatre for MYP 3. The target was for them to understand the famous Shakespearean play – Hamlet. In order to intrigue and inspire them to do something on their own, we started with a unit title that clearly indicated what they needed to do – H.I.P – Hamlet Innovation Project.
Students were given the freedom to use any medium in order to create a project that could show their understanding of the play. The many creative platforms they used ranged from baking, creating board games, air dry clay models, to using Minecraft’s education edition to replicate the story.
The Minecraft world of the Hamlet project showed various stages of the play and how the player has to walk through different doors to get to each scene. The students simultaneously explained the story in detail as the player proceeded from one room to another, depicting the various stages of the play. This not only helped students understand the plot in detail but also gave them an avenue to use their love for technology (especially Minecraft) and create a game world for enthusiasts who might remember the details clearly if they used their project. They read the text, created an image in their heads and then executed the same image on an interactive digital platform.
GRAPHIC NOVELS: LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE
As a part of the unit- Understanding Graphic Novels in MYP 2, educators introduced students to a platform ‘Storyboardthat.com’ to unleash their creative skills. Students designed their own graphic panels using the platform for their formative assessment. This was a perfect tool for students to design their own graphic panels and showcase various conventions of this genre. Students created panels that captured either a significant moment in their lives or how they see themselves in the future.
Language and Literature
One of the major goals of education in Language and Literature is to help the students communicate in an effective and effortless manner. Flipgrid in an innovative tool that was used for this exercise. The students were given the task of recording a monologue of two minutes as Alan Campbell, expressing their thoughts and feelings after being blackmailed by Dorian into disposing off the body of Basil, from the novel – The Picture of Dorian Gray. Their responses were engaging and creative. This platform helped the students to become stronger and confident communicators and involved digital citizens.
Bad weather and air quality levels do not come in our way when we are determined to learn. The Language Acquisition educators took it as an opportunity to continue the learning for students at home using a flipped classroom. The students were introduced to Flipgrid to record video responses. Students were to watch a starter video. Based on this, they recorded their own video that explained how one can live a healthy life.
GEOBOARDS AND ALGEBRAIC TILES
Students of MYP 2 used online geoboards to make 2-dimensional geometric patterns and irregular shapes and calculated the area and perimeter of the same. The students played a game in pair by giving a challenging figure to their partners to calculate area and perimeter of the shape in stipulated time.
Students of MYP 3 learnt factorization by using online algebraic tiles. It was a fun way to understand a difficult concept of factorizing the algebraic expressions.
For their first unit -Puzzling by Design, students designed a 16 piece puzzle using 2D-Tech, CAD software which can then be transferred to a laser cutting machine. The subject matter of the puzzles were linked to the Unit of Inquiry for the PYP, as the clients were the teachers of grades 4 and 5 and the users were students of the same grade.
In product design, students of MYP 5 did a unit on CAD modelling wherein few students designed classrooms using Google Sketchup. Initially, the layout of the classroom was done by using AutoCAD design software. Thereafter, they used Google Sketchup to create the 3D view.
The outcome was tangible as the students explored all the tools of AutoCAD and Google SketchUp design software.
Digital Design: myp 4
In Digital Design, students of MYP 4 aimed at developing a solution which can assist the vulnerable. The target audience were the homeless, displaced people, rescue workers and people with physical or mental challenges.
The students of MYP 4 brainstormed and developed a variety of digital solutions to assist the vulnerable.
Krutica Aggarwal chose road accident victims as the vulnerable and created a mobile application called MediFriend. MediFriend is a non-profit app that aims to assist road accident victims in the state of vulnerability, i.e. the golden hour right after the traumatic experience takes place. MediFriend exists to help out senior citizens the most as they’re often left without family or an emergency contact. This app incorporates a live map with the location of the user along with the number of volunteers within his/her 10 km radius. It also makes use of a panic button which, when clicked, sends a text message to all emergency contacts listed by the user. MediFriend assistants signed up as volunteers. As this app aims to aid accident survivors, their safety is first priority. This is a platform created to decrease the rate of fatal injuries or deaths caused by help not arriving in time.
Shashwat Shukla identified stress as one of the issues faced by the vulnerable. He created a stress and anxiety removal app Heallife. The app uses a cognitive-developmental theory to provide a range of courses to the user. The app contains 3 main screens and 6 sub-screens. It has been integrated with Airtable to create a user database, creating user-profiles. Moreover, the app contains a Dialogueflow assistant. This helps the user identify the best course for him. Lastly, the app’s user-interface has been deliberately chosen to reduce stress. The app provides an efficient and effective mean for stress removal.
Aarush Vajapayajula decided to aid his client in not only remembering to take her medicine but also by making it easier for her to buy medicine with his app Mediconvenience. Then, after finding a client, Aarush focused on researching the different aspects of the problem and application which he would be making. Finally, he began creating the application. At this point, he found new features that he decided to implement.
dIGITAL dESIGN: myp 5
Tourism is a booming industry across the world as travelling more accessible to the public with the advent of technology. Technology not only makes travelling easy but it helps in dealing with common problems while travelling MYP 5 students created digital solution in this direction.
Ansh Aggarwal created a game to keep the client calm and stress free during the travel. The game encourages the player to think quickly and find creative methods to try and solve each stage in the least possible amount of time. It uses the well-established rogue-like system to keep each stage new in design and gameplay as it randomizes the placement of game elements whenever the player proceeds to another stage. Added with the simple controls and engaging gameplay, the game becomes fun to play at long stretches due to its arcade design. This fact allows the game to fulfill its main purpose, which was to entertain its users while they travel in vehicles. The design also forces the player to take frequent breaks so as to avoid excessive strain on the users’ eyes.
Anandi Nambiar created a Spanish language app targeting tourists. The app allowed the user to develop a better understanding of Spanish culture and Spanish the language. Included in the app was a Anandi Nambiar created a Spanish language app targeting tourists. The app allowed the user to develop a better understanding of Spanish culture and their language. Included in the app was a variety of elements such as a page on culture, a feedback form, common phrases, location specific phrases, introductory phrases and a translator which only translated English to Spanish as English speakers visiting Spain or a Spanish speaking country were the target with the specific client being a frequent traveller.
Manya Malhotra, in his unit on tourism, used his acquired knowledge of HTML and CSS to create a website he named StadiuMaster, which allowed the user to access information about 100+ professional sports arenas/fields across the Big 4 North American sports (American football, baseball, ice hockey and basketball) all in one spot, such as their locations, their ticket packages, their best-rated tours and food and of course, schedules for the teams that played home games there.
“Robotics has made our world even more fantastic… ” Students of MYP are working on the basics of Lego EV3 and have started to program the motors and control the movement of the GenBot. Few students have also started with the working of ultrasonic sensors and are gradually working towards designing a bot to find its own way around the obstacles.
We, at DPS International, see technology as a great tool that can be a difference-maker, a motivator, an enabler, a voice, a problem-solver, and more. The walls of the classrooms are no longer a barrier as technology enables new ways of learning, communicating, and working collaboratively. There is always more to learn, create and share.
Preparing students to meet the future challenges requires strong skills of information literacy that will give them improved quality of life and open plethora of learning opportunities. Through technology we are enabled to finally make the most of the diversified approach in teaching and learning.