Torch - Spring 2017

“ Engagement is a precondition for learning.

Here are a few snapshots of how our teachers build engagement and, as a result, cultivate curiosity, interest and optimism in our girls: • Tap into a Grade 1 student’s innate curiosity about shapes and patterns by letting her explore the outdoors. Our natural world and the architectural features of our campus provide perfect lessons in two-dimensional and three-dimensional geometry. Even better, the girls join with their HaverPals to deepen their learning about planes and solids, while connecting to older girls who mentor and share in the fun. • Ask essential questions in Grade 3 to build a bridge between the past and the present. As our students explore early communities in Canada, they create meaning and build understanding by making connections to today’s world. They apply their knowledge of modern life to that of the early pioneers, while asking questions about how the people who came before them influenced the world they see today. • Immerse Grade 5 students in an interdisciplinary exploration of history and literature by introducing them to historical fiction. Combining the perspectives of art and social science unleashes creative and analytical possibilities not available through a single-lens study. Plus, storytelling—whether fictional or real— is an incredibly powerful learning tool. • Encourage Grade 7 students to ask questions about the nature of history through the study of “great humans.” Students choose a great human, engage in scholarly research, establish a connection across time and ask pressing questions about

—Jal Mehta, Harvard Graduate School of Education “ it all. One student’s question: “What is lost when we can only study great women and not ordinary women whose lives aren’t recorded?” • Draw on depths of expressive creativity to translate one art form into another. Grade 12 students visit the Art Gallery of Ontario to engage in ekphrastic writing. Ekphrasis is the Greek term for a verbal description of a visual work of art, such as a painting or sculpture (recall Keats’s “Ode on a Grecian Urn”). Students select a piece and write about their encounter with it, finding meaning in the interaction between forms, periods and artists.

Students explore the Burke Brook with their HaverPals.

SPRING 2017 • TORCH 13

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