Our PYP Exhibition Journey 2022-2023 (Getting Started - Investigating Stage)

Our PYP Exhibition Journey 2022-2023 (Getting Started - Investigating Stage)
Serrin Smyth

Our PYP Exhibition Journey

(Getting Started - Investigating Stage)

Students began Exhibition by forming connections between the Seisen School Mission, the Seisen Learning Principles and the purpose of the PYP Exhibition. How will the Exhibition help us to live out our School Mission?

As the PYP Exhibition is a collaborative inquiry, students sort the Approaches to Learning (social skills) as to which are more pertinent during the Exhibition.

The Kindergarten Students developed our analogy for the PYP Exhibition; riding a tandem bicycle on a journey. 

"The two seats on the back have to pedal, the first seat has to control the direction the bike is going, this represents taking on different roles when we collaborate."

"Need to collaborate to make the bicycle go - you can’t do the exhibition by yourself!"

"The different paths on the map represent how many ways we can try to get to our goal and that we might go one way and not succeed, therefore need to try a new way."

"The students in the centre of the map represent us and our identities, we come from different places, and have different experiences and now we are together working on a goal."

"To achieve the same goal different people are taking different paths (learning will look different for each group and each student), and taking on different roles at different times."

"Shows how different people take different paths to reach their destination, we all end up at a similar place but we take different routes and some of us might have more challenges than others."



Students were placed in Collaborative Groups and spent time getting to know their group members through different 'getting to know you' group challenges.  


 Students share their interests, passions and ideas through a "feel, think say, do" activity, and collaborate by listening, and sharing connections or questions in response to each other's thoughts.

Idea Generation Stage: Students brainstormed different concepts that they might inquire into and developed their ideas through making connections.

 Idea Generation Stage: What might be some of the issues or opportunities in connection to these topics?

Students then created their own person word webs of topics that were of interest to them. They wrote their favourite 10 - 15 ideas on hexagons.

 Through a hexagonal thinking routine, students made connections to each other's topics in order to see how separate ideas may come together within the group.

Students then conferred with teachers to select and refine a topic of focus for their Exhibition and why it was of importance to them. From here they will develop their initial questions in the investigation stage of the SOLO Taxonomy to guide their research.

Some students had the wonderful opportunity of attending Tokyo International School to be a part of a ‘Climate Simulation Activity’ led by Inroad (https://www.climateinteractive.org/en-roads/) an interactive online tool. The students had to design a scenario that will help to lower global emissions by 2100. These students attended as their Exhibition topics focus on climate action and sustainability. 

Students use the Key Concept (Form, Function, Connection, Change, Causation, Perspective and Responsibility) sentence starters to formulate guiding questions as they move into the investigation and research stage of the inquiry.

Students firstly wrote many questions for each key concept.

Then conferred with a teacher to determine which three key concepts will form the focus of their investigation.  

They reflected on which three were of interest to them and seemed most relevant in relation to their topic. Having these three key concepts determined, meant they could now write their lines of inquiry which will guide the research they will begin this week by considering what books, website, people and places might help them to answer their questions.

Students have a visual timeline of the Exhibition process up in the classroom to help them see the journey of their inquiry, where they have been and where they are heading next.

 Using the SOLO Taxonomy, students create success criteria for the investigating stage of their Exhibition. 

Students meet with their mentor each week. Their mentor provides them with feedback, suggestions, ideas, and guiding questions to help them grow and extend their ideas further.

As students begin the process of reading articles, they take 'lean notes' by jotting down important key ideas from the text. They then collaboratively share these ideas with their group to understand the text from a different persons perspective.

As we read, we consider the view point of this information to inform our thinking about it by using these guiding questions.

 Students brainstormed places, people and other resources they can use to gather information over the next two weeks.

Parents signed up during our Exhibition Information evening to be interviewed by the students. Many students have contacted parents this week to set up interviews and gain new insight to their topics.  

Students use the teacher developed Padlet to support them with reading articles in connection to their topics. 

Students select the self management skills they wish to focus on each day and then reflect on these skills by using this graphic. For example, today I will focus on being organised, or limiting distractions.

An essential element is the students designing and setting up their collaborative work areas. How will they use the environment and tools around them to manage their inquiry as a group.  

Students have created their focus wall, which includes checklists, research notes, meeting times, schedules, and to do lists.

 Having the core elements such as their SOLO displayed, places to find information and the groups essential agreements up, are visual reminders to support them focusing on their goals.


Students have begun interviewing parents of our community, this has been supporting them to gain a range of different perspectives on their topics. A huge thank you to parents for supporting our learning! 

Thank you Dr. Mangisi for teaching us more about the causes and effects of global conflicts, the local, national, and global perspectives on the Ukraine conflict and understanding how to handle and prevent global conflicts.

Students interview "Biosmass Resin" a company in Japan making plastic out of expired rice!

Thank you Ms Ando for sharing your thoughts and perspectives on the role of music in our lives.

Students interview Ms Orr on her thoughts about animals, thank you!

Connecting ideas & Going Further in next post...

More Seisen News