Catch the “Fever” of Personal Projects

January 29, 2020
January 29, 2020 Andy Pontius

To be honest with you I thought this was going to be one of those boring events that we have to attend just to be polite. Instead I witnessed an extraordinary event full of passion from both teachers and students. Not often  (or never?) do you see 15 or 16 years old kids with everything on their minds but school so involved in a project. It was a huge surprise for me to see the passion and the ‘fever’ they were having, while talking about their projects with kids from elementary school to grandparents. I know that the rules of a good essay say not to repeat words, but as you can see, I cannot avoid using ‘passion’ several times, because that was exactly what I felt from you and students!” – AISB Parent, Bogdan Dragomir. 

In Grade 10 of any IB World School, you will see Grade 10 students scrambling to put together their Personal Projects, a project that showcases their overall learning throughout the MYP. Often this is simply seen as just one more thing on top of an otherwise very busy school life for these students. And yet, if you were able to wander around the PP Exhibition on January 15th or 16th, you would have seen students who truly were engaged and energetic to share their learning, to share their journey. There were projects ranging from thy Psychology of Acne to building an Ultimate Frisbee Basket and ideas for an entire course on our campus. Others showcased websites or books on different aspects of cooking, from sugar free to cultural connections. Then there were some amazing service-based projects, such as creating a mural at a retirement home to teaching English to students at an orphanage. And there were so many more, truly personal and engaging projects. 

As we continually try to rethink the purpose of education and how to best prepare students for their future. It was very clear earlier this month, that these students have passions, that they truly care, and that they have the skills necessary to do some amazing things in their future. These students caught the fever of Personal Project, and hopefully this lives on into their future!