North Point students from Gr 1-9 held a unique showcase on March 13, 2019 to highlight projects they have worked on since October 2018. The first annual Passion Project allowed students to explore the year’s project theme through a topic they are personally passionate about.
The theme of this first Passion Project was “Can Competition Lead to Growth or Change?” In addition to addressing the theme, students had to tie in North Point’s 5R character education model – respectful, resourceful, resilient, relentless and responsible. Held in a format similar to a science fair, students displayed their projects throughout the school on the afternoon of March 13, 2019, while parents and extended family toured and learned what our students are passionate about.
“The idea is to enable a student to create a project based on something they love, allowing passion to drive learning. It empowers students to take charge of their own learning experience,” states Kim Pirie. Students were able to work on the projects in school approximately two Friday afternoons a month since last October. Many spent their lunch hours and every break possible in addition to extra time at home. “It was incredible to see the breadth and depth of projects. I really enjoyed listening to them explain why they chose their topic and to see what they had learned in the process. Students were able to experience learning without it feeling like work!”, explains Ms. Pirie.
While the project was on the topic of their choice, North Point provided a solid structure. “We created a project rubric for evaluation/grading and a work-plan with the project life cycle steps to follow – questioning phase, planning (materials, space), research, connection to 5R, creation and improvement. As with any project, some students started and abandoned topics before settling on something that mattered to them,” shared Mr. Kostecki. Trial and error is an important part of the process. We don’t want students to fear failure – it is a critical to developing resilience and independence.
The project provided insight into what our students love to do when they are not in school. There were some of the usual suspects – hockey (and other sports), video gaming and spending time with their favourite pets. Other topics explored included creative writing, architecture (tall buildings), freestyle skiing, Lego, fishing, birds of prey, sharks and more! The projects were explained through traditional poster-board displays, computer slide presentations, hands-on displays (hockey table) and even one music presentation. Be sure to check out the photos.
The Passion Project Showcase ran on Wednesday March 13, 2019 from 1 – 3 p.m. and was well attended by parents, grandparents and extended family. We thank all the boys (and their families!) for their support in this important learning exercise.