I am a class teacher for Year Four and five students and a team leader for the middle school. My class and I are a part of the Manaiakalani Google ClassOnAir.

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Introducing the Term 3 - Choice and Inquiry based Learning

Last week I did my 'Big Reveal' for the Term.  The 'Big Reveal' at our school is about introducing the topic for unit studies for the Term. The topic for this term is ' Entertainment and Leisure'.
I wanted my students to get hooked on to the topic right from the beginning so I gave them time to think about what they were interested in. All they said was rugby, soccer, gymnastics and other sport activities. They had no idea about the things that they could pursue and could get interested in. I wanted our inquiry to be a platform of innovation where students would get motivated to inquire and create not because I have asked them to research on a topic but about something they themselves were eager to find out.
To get them thinking and foster this spirit of inquiry, I planned a little expo of hobbies. I created a display in my class when my students were away for 'Kiwi Can'. The display consisted of books about different hobbies. There was a big range of topics e.g.

Countries, Cultures and Travelling

Inventions, Aeroplanes and Motorbikes

Human body

Ancient civilisations and castles

Story telling, Arts and Crafts, Gardening, Cooking, Painting Kite making, Mask Making and Drawing

I am a firm believer of choice and inquiry based learning. It increases student engagement and achievement. 
The display proved to be electrifying for the students. They spent a whole hour reading books to find what caught their interest the most. I could see the pure passion in their eyes. Even the ones who are usually not very focussed in class had something to say about their hobbies.

I felt a very satisfied teacher and was happy about the way I had introduced the topic to my students for the Term. In the end we made list the hobbies that we were interested to pursue and explore deeper.

  • Cooking and Travelling
  • Aeroplanes
  • Robotics
  • Circuits
  • Farming
  • Ancient Civilisations
  • Kite making 
  • Painting
  • Counties and culture.


  1. I agree hooking into students interests and revealing other options for them to explore -connects with learners and feeds their interest. A great way to start and it is a strong link to NZC key competencies.
    We have just had 2 work Team days in Auckland and Aaron Wilson was a key note speaker. I had a chat and we talked about student oral language and the best way to connect to what they already know in order to build on to that. He used a simple word jumble in part of his presentation to check for understanding around a key theme and to give the audience a chance to connect their prior knowledge to the topic. It worked well. It seems to me that your students will have expert knowledge of the language in their areas of interest/expertise for this. I look forward to hearing how this goes.

  2. Thank you Vera, I will keep my readers updated on what happens next in our journey of inquiry.

  3. I am really looking forward to delving into the interests & hobbies of the members of our children's community - NGĀ MAHI A RĒHIA - great start Archana!