Motueka South School

Our Place

Our Research Process

“Our Place, Motueka South”

Motueka South School
Our Inquiry Process:

Step One: Plan (to decide on the topic)

  1. Term 1: Whole staff and team discussions were held, about possible topics and sub-topics and decision-making in teams. The timeline was established and initial specific learning outcomes and products (including input to LH site) were identified.
  2. We developed and practised required skills and strategies for Inquiry, integrated into regular classroom programmes. (eg questioning, teamwork and cooperation, communication, and problem solving).
  3. Term 2: We practised our Inquiry teaching and learning approach using the “Autumn” unit, which included brainstorming ideas, discussing, goal setting and research, and questioning. We used graphic organiser.

Step Two: Explore (To set research questions and gather information)

  1. Term 3: We explored the local neighbourhood with a series of planned walks and a car trip, locating landmarks and features along the way, making sketches, then formulated “I Wonder?” questions.
  2. We shared and discussed photos from trips and decided on particular focus for class Inquiry,
  3. We decided on research questions and suitable sources of information.

Step Three: Choose (Use information and decide how best to record and display findings)

  1. Each class chose their favourite local place and decided how best to display and present the information gathered. Some classes made individual “Grab Bags” to collect and store their questions and information on (an idea from the Social Sciences Exemplars)

  2. We fed-back and shared information as students located the information. The children felt real ownership of their research and showed a keen interest.

  3. Some classes wrote to the local newspaper “The Guardian” with their questions and also to local community members, who kindly came to visit us and allowed us to interview them.

Step Four: Create (To create original work about the topic)

  1. We made art works from our sketches of our chosen topic, which were displayed in the Motueka High School foyer during the local cluster of primary schools’ MASSIVE arts sharing production in week 6.

  2. We constructed replicas of our local clock tower and TOAD Hall, 3-Dimensional box models of the Janie Seddon and other visual art works. These were major group activities with students cooperating to make and paint authentic-looking models and a matching setting.

  3. We wrote stories and made planners for our web page on the Living Heritage site.

Step Five: Share (Publish on the Living Heritage site)

  1. We made displays of our art work, stories and photographs and invited parents to come and share in the results of our Inquiry Learning.

  2. We constructed our web page for the Living heritage site using photos, stories and other information.

  3. We held a Sharing assembly on the last day of term for all the junior classes to share and celebrate our Inquiry learning products from the term.

Step Six: Review (Evaluate the inquiry process and students' achievements, respond and feedback)

  1. Students and staff in all four junior classes reflected on their terms work and their achievements, responded to their own and peers work and the class effort overall. Everyone was proud of their efforts and keen to use the same approach to our topic work next term.