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Planning the inquiry

1. What is our purpose? Class/grade: 4 Age group: 9/10

To inquire into the following:
• Transdisciplinary Theme School: Trinity Lutheran College School code:
Where We Are In Place and Time
Title: Inventions Rock the World
• Central Idea PYP planner
Teacher(s): Rebecca Sealey, Louise Symonds, Linda Dempster
Inventions change the world
Summative assessment task(s):
Date: Weeks 3 - 7
1. ‘Etherpad’ research notes Outcomes
2. Information Report SOSE

3. Invention Movie TCC 3.4 Students organise information about causes Proposed duration: 10 hours over number of weeks: 5
and effects of specific historical events (inventions).
TCC 3.1 Students use evidence about innovation to
investigate how these have changed society.
ENGLISH: SS 3.3 Students make predictions about the

Literary and Non-Literary Texts

immediate impact of some applications of science
2. What do we want to learn?
• Non-literary texts report, inform, … What are the key concepts (form, function, causation, change, connection,
• Information … reports, … are types of non-literary texts perspective, responsibility, reflection) to be emphasized within this inquiry?
• Main ideas are established by indentifying who, what, where, when, how and why.
• Reports and arguments have structures, including an introduction or a general
statement, elaboration of information or reasons, and a conclusion
TIME, CONTINUITY AND CHANGE: What lines of inquiry will define the scope of the inquiry into the central idea?
Changes and continuities are represented by events and people’s contributions, and are viewed
differently by different people. • The reasons for inventors inventing.
• Individuals and groups have made significant contributions to change and maintain • The ways in which inventors have shaped their society and future
Australian communities, heritages and identities
PLACE AND SPACE • The specific contributions of inventors in history
• Interactions between people and places affect the physical features of the land,
biodiversity, water and atmosphere
WAYS OF WORKING What teacher questions/provocations will drive these inquiries?
• pose and refine questions for investigations
• plan investigations based on questions and inquiry models 1. What does it mean to invent? What is an inventor?
• collect and organise information and evidence 2. Why do people invent?
• evaluate sources of information and evidence to determine different perspectives, and 3. How does one invention lead to another?
distinguish facts from opinions 4. Are all inventions good/helpful/successful?
• draw and justify conclusions based on information and evidence 5. How do inventions change the way individuals and communities
• reflect on learning to identify new understandings and future applications live/act (positive and negative)?
Technology influences and impacts on people, their communities and environments.
• Different ideas for designs and products are developed to meet needs and wants of
people, their communities and environments
• The products and processes of technology can have positive or negative impacts

© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007

Planning the inquiry

3. How might we know what we have learned? 4. How best might we learn?
What are the possible ways of assessing students’ prior knowledge and skills? What Frontloading:
evidence will we look for? • Discuss and define the words ‘invent’, ‘inventor’, ‘invention’ – chn write own definition, partner definition,
group definition – share and display definitions (check dictionary) – draw an inventor (list characteristics)
• Everyday inventions – give pairs of children a familiar invention (eg biro) – discuss: What is it, what does it do,
• List inventions that you think have been useful why invented, what was the world like before it was invented, how is the world improved?
• Look at ‘Rube Goldberg’ cartoons and ‘You Tube’ videos of competitions which show a collection of activities
• Sequence a given list of inventions to do a simple activity.
• Treasure Hunt – touch 10 objects that did not exist 10 years ago, 100 years ago.
• View episodes of ‘New Inventors’ –discuss the inventors, their problems and solutions
• Mind Map (on ‘Inspiration’ – questions for inquiry categories: who, when, what, where, why, how. Discuss the
What are the possible ways of assessing student learning in the context of the difference between open (‘fat’) and closed (‘skinny’) questions
lines of inquiry? What evidence will we look for? • Homework – interview parent/grandparent – inventions that have changed their lifestyle; list all inventions
• Brainstorm list of inventions and categorise – time savers, energy savers, safety, transport, communication,
• Observation – anecdotal evidence from learning conversations entertainment
o Teacher-student • In IT time with Danny Mackenzie and Kym Oestrich help children find appropriate websites containing
information about inventions. Discuss what makes an appropriate website. Students to find a website to
o Student-student recommend to others.
Supporting children’s inquiry:
• Student informal oral reports of ‘current’ findings.
• Class development of timeline of inventions – add inventions throughout the unit as children discover dates –
• Regular observations of Etherpad entries. ‘Chat’ by using questions to Displayed on board but also on-line using “Timeline”
• Negotiate list of inventions to be investigated individually – (from teacher list that include topics from
stimulate discussion. Observe participation. Brainpop and ‘Inventions’ encyclopedia)
• Note-taking in classroom and home. Recorded on ‘Etherpad’ – one person per class on each topic.
• During guided reading, focus on note taking and writing reports on general topics
Work sample
• Organise information gathered on Etherpad (by all authors) into an information report. Edit and publish.
1. Information Report: • Produce a visual movie to represent the information report.
a. written format What opportunities will occur for transdisciplinary skills development and for the
b. movie format development of the attributes of the learner profile?
Acquisition of knowledge: Students gather specific facts about inventions – who they were invented
2. Written ‘discussion’ about how particular inventions have changed the by, when, where, etc.
world. Reading: locating information in texts and on-line
Writing: taking notes using Etherpad
Presenting: constructing a movie to illustrate their knowledge of the invention
Time management: students will only have a fortnight (mainly for homework) to record knowledge
about an invention on Etherpad
Formulating questions: students think about questions for the categories who, what, where, when,
how, why
Organising data: into an information report (Continued on Teacher Notes)

5. What resources need to be gathered?

• Non-fiction books about inventors and inventions • Video-taped episodes of ABC’s ‘New Inventors’
• Examples of everyday inventions • ‘Inspiration’ and ‘Movie maker’ software
• Picture books featuring times in the past • Pictures of inventions
• Websites of inventions set up on the library homepage and search engines • Encyclopaedia of Inventions (set)
• ‘Etherpad’ (Web 2.0 application) • On-line encyclopaedia (Britannica, Encarta)
• Teacher resources books: “Great Inventors and Inventions”, “Inventions Unlimited!” (28283); “Inventions” (28288)
How will the classroom environment, local environment, and/or the community be used to facilitate the inquiry?
• Guest speakers: Tara’s mum (pram shadecloth);
• Research conducted at home, over internet using ‘Etherpad’, parental help encouraged

© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007

6. To what extent did we achieve our purpose? 7. To what extent did we include the elements of the PYP?
Assess the outcome of the inquiry by providing evidence of students’ understanding What were the learning experiences that enabled students to:
of the central idea. The reflections of all teachers involved in the planning and
teaching of the inquiry should be included.
• develop an understanding of the concepts identified in “What do we want to
How you could improve on the assessment task(s so that you would have a more
accurate picture of each student’s understanding of the central idea. • demonstrate the learning and application of particular transdisciplinary skills?

What was the evidence that connections were made between the central idea and Metacognition – did a reflection on the process from choosing topic, through research
the transdisciplinary theme? and writing report. Valuable.

• develop particular attributes of the learner profile and/or attitudes?

In each case, explain your selection.

© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007

Reflecting on the inquiry

8. What student-initiated inquiries arose from the learning? 9. Teacher notes

Record a range of student-initiated inquiries and student questions and highlight any • Transidisciplinary Skills and learner profile planning continued …
that were incorporated into the teaching and learning. o Presenting research findings: using a movie to clearly communicate their information abo
the invention and how it has changed (rocked) the world
o Learner Profile:
 Inquirers: students need to know the type of information to gather, thi
about where to get it. After gaining knowledge, should come up with mo
questions to answer.

At this point teachers should go back to box 2 “What do we want to learn?” and  Thinkers: students need to think about how the invention has changed t
world – use information gathered to form an independent opinion
highlight the teacher questions/provocations that were most effective in driving the
inquiries. • Activity ideas for next year:
o From “Inventions Unlimited” by Jean Edwards (in library)
What student-initiated actions arose from the learning?  p 21 Choose 3 of the given ‘invented words’, which are all named after re
people. Explain who, when, etc
Record student-initiated actions taken by individuals or groups showing their ability to
reflect, to choose and to act.  p 25 Sort the inventions into 3 groups
 p 26 Discuss with a grandparent, etc things that weren’t invented when th
were your age.
 p 27 ‘Interview’ the inventor

© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007