“Is there such a thing as a universal beauty?”
While some may be quick to argue that beauty is subjective, some scientists have gotten down to studies and conclusions on the metrics of what constitutes a universal beauty.
This is an innovative trial of interdisciplinary study from the teaching staff of Pre-IGCSE. With guidance from different subject teachers, students began their exploration of universal beauty which transcends subjects and disciplines. The students’ discoveries and creative perspectives really amazed the teachers.
Let’s find out more from Ms. Tara BRENNAN, one of the lead teachers of this creative curricula project.
How did these interdisciplinary curricula projects come about?
The teachers began exploring this idea at the end of the last school year and through some collaborative brainstorming, the essential question was created. After a few changes, we felt the idea of a universal beauty could be investigated in many different ways and was appropriate for the G7 students.
What is the curricula of “Universal Beauty” about?
The curricula aimed for students to be able to answer the question “Is there a universal beauty?” at the end of the year using various pieces of evidence from their different classes. Each subject teacher facilitated the lessons in order for the students to explore the essential question in a way that is meaningful, interesting and connects to the G7 curricula.
How did the teaching team develop the interdisciplinary curricula?
Once the essential question was developed, the teachers found where it best fit into the curriculum for their content and then we made a calendar to ensure the year was well-planned so that students were consistently exploring this idea. Lastly, the students had to answer the essential question in English class over the course of a few weeks where they pulled information from all their other subject classes regarding this topic.
What was the key element in the execution of the curricula?
The key element for this first year was planning and trying. Since it was our first year, we just had to give it a try and we will be reflecting soon to see what we could do differently next year.
What is next?
The next plan is to evaluate how the year went and decide if we want to keep the same essential question for next year or if we should modify or change it. Similarly, we would like to possibly create a G8 interdisciplinary unit with a different concept and essential question to explore. The teachers will be meeting soon to brainstorm and discuss possible ideas for next year.
What is the education philosophy behind the interdisciplinary curricula?
Students often go class to class without connecting or thinking about how each class connects to the other. The idea of an interdisciplinary unit allows students to make connections between their classes and explore a topic in a deeper, more meaningful and memorable way.
In the exploration of the innovative curricula, the students have gained far more than expected. The innovative curricula will continue to nurture their thinking in different dimensions, developing global citizens who take learning upon themselves.