The students are given an opportunity to complete true investigations. The students are taught the steps that are involved. The program is based around science and design and it has the freedom and flexibility for the children to take their investigations where they want and where their interests lay.
Literacy and Maths is heavily embedded in the program. Writing is a big focus of Prep Investigations and we believe many more genres of writing will be accessible for the children through the real life experiences they will be participating in.
The learning space has been set up to replicate the design process the children follow. These are the steps the children will become familiar with:
- Planning: This is where we think about what we would like to make and we draw and label what we are making. We also think about what we might need.
- Research: This is where we can use books and the iPads to learn new things about what we want to make.
- Resources: This is where we collect everything we need to make our project. Sometimes we might forget things but we can always come back to this space.
- Create/explore: This is where we make our design or carry out our experiments.
- Reflecting: This is where we sit down and think about all the things we like about our design.
During terms 1 and 2 the children complete the same projects as either a whole class or in small groups to support them through the process. In term 3 the children are given the opportunity to decide what they would like to create or explore. The aim is for them to be able to carry out their project with minimal teacher input.
The following are examples of projects the students might like to explore:-
- Creating a house for a special toy
- Designing clothes for toys
- Investigating paper aeroplanes
- Exploring how to make a volcano erupt
- Building tall but stable towers
This investigative format allows the children to take their ideas wherever they like – thus catering for individual abilities and interests.
Some children may also have access to extension programs across the curriculum including; Extension Maths, GATEWAYS, Tournament of the Minds and Inter-School Debating.