Personal Interests Lead the Inquiry Process
Published : Monday, December 7, 2015 | 7:38 PM
Seventh and eighth grade students at Clairbourn experienced “Project Week” in early October. This activity allows them to investigate a topic of interest where they can use deeply the inquiry process.
Students initially made a list of 20 topics they were curious about and then narrowed the list down to one. Whatever topic the students picked, they were each required to interview an expert in person or by phone, conduct in-depth research, give an oral presentation with accompanying PowerPoint slides, and create visual aids if possible. Creativity, critical thinking, and investigative skills all carried weight in their grade. In addition to having to work with a partner, students were required to keep a daily journal of their work.
The presentations were captivating, and while many were centered around food and popular culture, others went deep into weighty topics like submarines, hydro-electric power, computers, and counterfeit money. Other topics covered included Starbucks Coffee, Pizza, Kimchi and Fermentation, Animation, Paintball, Interior Design, Carmella Ice Cream Skateboard Design, You Tube Broadcasting, How to Work for the F.B.I., and Flambe Desserts.
After each presentation, students were graded by their teachers and their peers. To hone their public speaking and presentation skills further, students will present to an audience of dads visiting the school on Father’s Visiting Day and they will work with the theater group A Noise Within later in the year.
Clairbourn School, 8400 Huntington Drive, San Gabriel, (626) 286-3108 or visit www.clairbourn.org.