Finding Our Passion

What is your passion?  

This is the question Room 15 students have been asked to think about when choosing a Passion Project.

Passion Projects are run by the Poihipi teachers in Room 15 each Friday and are designed to be engaging experiences covering a range of interests indicated by the students.

I have had the privilege of working with two different groups, helping them to further their knowledge in ‘The Arts’ area of the New Zealand Curriculum.

The first group had a music focus and explored bucket drumming and other handheld, untuned percussion instruments. Through these experiences with various percussion instruments, the students developed their understanding of elements of music such as rhythm, beat, dynamics (loud and soft) and tempo (playing in time).  

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The group found that playing an instrument was a lot more challenging than they first thought. Simply banging on the instrument did not instantly produce the required outcome and a lot of concentration and perseverance was required to stay in time with the music and with each other.

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A few students found the noise of everyone playing at once overwhelming and the group had to brainstorm possible solutions to overcome this problem.

Rosalie: It’s so loud when everyone plays at the same time. My ears hurt!

Angus: Maybe we could have just one or two people playing and then swap.

Kaylah: We could try playing quieter.

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Although the experience took some people out of their comfort zones, the students learnt a lot about playing an instrument and also about problem solving and resilience when encountering challenges.

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Van: I like drumming!

The second passion project group chose to focus on drawing and crafts.

For the first session, the emphasis was on crafts.  The students developed their fine motor skills, experimented with pattern and colour and used different materials such as pegs, pipe cleaners, popsicle sticks and googly eyes to make an insect magnet for their fridge at home.

Molly: It’s hard to get the eyes to stick onto the peg.

Brodie: I’m going to do a pattern with stripes.

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The second session focused specifically on drawing.  The students challenged themselves to listen to and follow instructions from ‘How to Draw’ YouTube videos for kids.  

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Initially, the group did not believe they could draw the cartoon objects shown in the videos.

Jack: It looks so hard. I don’t know if I can do it. I’m going to try my best.

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With a ‘can do’ attitude and lots of practise, the students surprised themselves with their hidden talents and were so proud of their cartoon ice cream cones, popsicles and minions.  The students agreed it was very impressive for a group of 5 year olds!  What do you think of their drawings?

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Thor: I did it!

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Keywords: Passion Projects, music, drawing, crafts

Curriculum Links: The Arts- Music and Visual Arts 

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