Integrated learning @ SMIS
The teaching learning process at SMIS is student-centric, activity-based and engaging. Our lessons are designed keeping in mind different learning styles and abilities of children. We believe that real education moves beyond textbooks and confines of the classroom. Thus, we lay emphasis on relating knowledge to the world around, on drawing linkages between theoretical knowledge, its practical application and social/emotional significance as well. Children from Grade K2 to G10 learn different elements of the unit ‘Money’. Younger children learn exchange through different denominations and older children learn financial planning, interest calculations etc. The culmination is done through activities where children experience application of the concepts like e.g. ‘tuck Shop’ wherein they decide on products they can sell, make samples of the same using their knowledge of proportion, size and artistic skills, do budgeting, decide on the selling price and then sell the products made by them and earn profit.
SMIS guides students’ development as critical thinkers, collaborators, creative contributors, problem solvers, multifaceted communicators, and global citizens prepared to face 21st century challenges. Integrated learning helps students to develop a meaningful understanding of the complex associations and influences learning within a topic. A happy by-product of this is project-based learning, it makes learning more interesting and productive for students and teachers. We place emphasis on building connections between different topics and ignite curiosity of a learner. Our little learners of K2 did a project on ‘Adaptation’ last year. Children worked in groups throughout the project. They did some exciting activities like going on field trips, interacting with experts, inquiring, viewing videos etc. Presentation of Learning was done in 3 different forms – a booklet, models & gallery walk. Through this, children not only learn the targeted academic content but also life skills like collaboration, leadership, presentation etc.
We, at SMIS design our activities keeping students’ need in mind and that helps them to enhance their academics, social/emotional and creative skills. An example of one of such integrations is, the unit of 4 letter words (phonics) and bar graph (math) was planned wherein children were expected to make floor graph first using flash cards of 4 letter words and same thing was represented on paper as pictograph using pictures of same words. After a few such interventions, the mentor led them towards the understanding of Bar graph.
Here student develops the conceptual understanding of Math and Phonics. Other Math concepts like ascending, descending, more, less, addition etc. were also targeted through the Bar graph. These kind of activities also develop certain essential skills like problem solving, critical thinking, decision making, and group work skills.
Thus it can be said that integrated approach allows students to engage in purposeful, relevant learning.
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