“Hooray! This is the project we’ve been waiting for in Grade 3, and here it is!”
These were the joyous words proclaimed by our Grade 3 students when they received the project entitled, “Exploring a Pioneer’s Life!” The project was comprised of a three-part assignment where students were expected to research one of four types of pioneer homes, build a model of the home with a surrounding landscape, and prepare an oral presentation to support the finished product. The Grade 3’s could hardly contain their excitement as the presentation day dawned and our class turned into a mini museum with intricately decorated projects on display in every nook and corner of the room!
So, what is it about this type of assignment that brings so much excitement?
Projects, be they at-home or in-class, instantly help to build and nurture a child’s imagination. Not only do they allow hands-on learners to demonstrate their knowledge of the material learned in class, but they also open the doors to fully discover artistic talents and creative skills. The oral presentation component of a project encourages a generally timid child to build up their public speaking skills. Presenting a project to a familiar audience of fellow classmates becomes less overwhelming and a much more relaxing and enjoyable experience for the child.
However, based on the students’ responses to the above question, it seems that in their young minds, there was something more important that took precedence over simply discovering and exercising their own creativity. They were not only longing for more bonding time with mom, dad, brother, or sister, but eager to discover their family members’ level of artistic skill and creativity as well! I think we can all agree that projects such as these also present an invaluable opportunity for family communication and a chance to share ideas and create life-long memories of their elementary school years. As a teacher, it is always a pleasure to hear parents fondly reminisce about the memories of working on this project with their children.
As the students continue to explore with great enthusiasm and curiosity the lives of early settlers in Canada, it is evident that the Pioneer House project has been the highlight of their learning experience so far. The Pioneer House project has clearly earned the coveted title of “My Favourite Project,” making it a symbolic assignment in the Social Studies curriculum of Grade 3!
It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge. ~ Albert Einstein~
Our students’ positive attitude and yearning for active hands-on learning are clear indications of the success of Rowntree Montessori Schools’ holistic approach and its continued commitment to Nurturing Tomorrow’s Achievers!
We look forward to seeing you and sharing with you the private school community of which we are so proud!