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Blog: Friday, November 2nd, 2018

Curricular Competencies at Work

Robert Bateman Secondary School is embracing the changes and challenges of the new curriculum. The flexibility and opportunity for innovation lend itself to teachers and students taking risks throughout the learning process. Teachers are incorporating the core competencies by facilitating student learning through inquiry and project-based learning. Critical thinking, posing questions, and problem-solving are strategies for our student to dig deeper into their learning experiences. We know that some of these newer teaching practices have a longer lasting impact on learning and retention. One example happening in our school at this time is a unit being taught in our grade 9 science classes.

Our RBSS science department is presenting grade 9 learning outcomes through inquiry-based learning. The hands-on experience truly helps "young scientists" make predictions and see the results of their predictions. The incubator project is a project-based learning assignment where students build an incubator from scratch. The incubator must be designed to provide the proper environment to hatch chicken eggs. During this project, students must work collaboratively with peers, plan and build the incubator together, and maintain the incubator during the process. Students must also collect data on temperature and humidity over a three-week period. The data they collect allows them an opportunity to report out on their hatch rate. When the students report out, they must demonstrate connections between the project and physics (electricity), biology (mitosis and meiosis) and chemistry (chemical compounds). The vast learning and connection to the core and curricular competencies are very powerful and meaningful to all students taking part in this science unit. This is a fantastic way for students to take part in experiential learning.

These are very exciting times in education!

LANCE McDONALD
Principal, Robert Bateman Secondary