May always means that our fifth graders are in full gear with their IB Exhibition projects. This is a culminating activity that should showcase so much that a student has learned through the years through our IB PYP. They use the resources, knowledge base and learner profile. And it is always such an amazing opportunity for our teachers to see our students take action.

This year, our students kept their focus at home. The question revolves around how to make Joyner a better place. Students and staff brainstormed what issues they see around the school and seek ideas for solutions. Each student group has a mentor teacher that supports their work but really is there to assist if needed. The students guide their learning and resolutions. We have groups looking at beautification, creation of clubs, tutoring and so much more. Our safety patrol has even reflected on how to make our school even safer. 

Our safety patrol team evoked quite a stir last Friday. In their group they discussed their concern of the number of parents in the carpool line talking on cell phones. They shared stories that they have cars take off before the door is shut. Their toes are often in the way of that moving car. They were concerned. They wanted to make it a public rule to not be on the cell phone. But they also were concerned about parent response. So they decided to survey the parents in carpool on Friday afternoon. 

I have heard from several parents asking why they received this question. Conversations have occurred amazed at our students taking ownership of their school. Some concerned and wondering why they were asked such a question.

This is a process. And through each conversation I have with parents about the many topics our fifth graders are buzzing about, I am proud that our students have taken their exhibition projects so seriously and so passionately. 

Our students love their school. They are proud of the JYJ family. And they are problem solvers at its best. They see the school from probably the most important lens… through the child’s eye. They are risk takers as they challenge some of our norms and help us to create an even better environment to learn and grow.

Thank you fifth grade! Congratulations on the meaningful work you are doing for Joyner!