First Hand Experiences in Time and Place



Rachel McLeod, PYP Coordinator, The International School of Belgrade, Serbia


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Our Grade 5 students at the International School of Belgrade enjoyed their annual trip back in time as they visited several local Serbian heritage sites.

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Over three days and two nights, they explored the medieval fortress of Smederevo, the ancient Roman ruins of the Viminacium, and a virtual recreation of the intriguing trapezoidal buildings from the Lepinksi Vir, a tribe that once lived on the banks of the Danube in ancient Serbia.

Those heritage sites provided a way for our students to engage with their current unit of inquiry—where we are in place and time—and deepen their understanding of how past civilizations continue to affect present-day society. Our students were able to reconstruct some moments and events and develop a better grasp of how life was for people of past civilizations.

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It is always difficult for anyone to examine and explore the past when they were not part of it. The brightly colored books and websites, although they have interesting facts, cannot always satisfy the thirst for seeing and touching a place and experiencing it firsthand.

 

The use of field trips and firsthand experiences also promotes transdisciplinary learning. The real world is not made up of discrete subjects, so trips and primary sources can help our students explore an issue, learn facts, and develop their understandings through holistic, natural, and engaging ways.


Published in ISS NewsLinks: Volume XXXII Number 3

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