In a PYP school, every working group (teachers or students) starts off by creating an ‘essential agreement’. In the classroom, this means that, rather than teachers imposing rules, everyone works collaboratively to establish an agreement of how the class will function.
Today Jocelyn and I developed our class essential agreement. We started by asking the children to consider carefully and then write down what helps them learn and what hinders their learning. The next step was to share with a partner and find the things they had in common. Later we brought back a list of all the things they had written and, in groups, the students highlighted those they saw as most important for a class essential agreement which will maximise learning for everyone. This will be collated, brought back one more time to make sure everyone agrees and then we’ll have our class essential agreement!
The wordle shows the key words from the students’ original list of what helps them to learn. We believe it’s important to have an essential agreement that’s based on creating an environment conducive to learning, rather than rules and regulations.