From Inspiration To Design

Pangyo grade five teacher Christine Canales shares the scope of a current transdisciplinary unit culminating in an Eco Trade Show February 2018.

Despite only being in elementary school, the 5th Graders have already begun to view the world around them from the perspective of an environmentalist. Through research, innovation and design, they will spend this trimester developing and marketing a product that will rehabilitate or preserve an element of one of the Earth’s spheres.

To introduce the students to one potential area they can focus their efforts on for this trimester’s project, the unit began with a field trip to the Seongnam Water Treatment Plant in mid-November. The students toured the facility and were able to develop a better understanding of a water filtration process that occurs quite near KIS. The 5th Canales 5Grade students were accompanied by juniors and seniors from three Environmental Science classes at KIS. Not only did the high school mentors accompany the 5th Graders on the tour of the water treatment plant to guide discussions, but the high school mentors then facilitated learning stations in a nearby park after the tour concluded. Through these learning stations, the high school mentors guided their 5th Grade mentees through a wide range of activities that helped the 5th Graders explore factors that can affect water quality.

As this trimester unfolds in the coming months, a number of 5th Grade students will take inspiration from the field trip to design their own product that will benefit the Earth’s water supply. Other students will work towards developing products that will support yet another one of the Earth’s spheres. With feedback and guidance from their high school mentors, the 5th Graders will utilize time in Design, KoLAB, ITL (Integrated Technology & Library) and the homeroom setting to finalize their products, which will be showcased on February 23rd at the 5th Grade Eco Trade Show.

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