The special task of grades 3-6 is to develop learning-to-learn skills and to recognise and develop personal study habits and skills. In grades 3-6, school days are organised by subjects, but instruction can remain mainly integrative.
In the selection of working methods, the characteristics of different subjects and the development of transversal competences are taken into consideration. The use of working methods typical for each subject promotes both the formation of organized knowledge structures and the adoption of skills. Skills in finding, processing, analyzing, presenting, applying, combining, evaluating, and creating information are important for learning. An exploratory and problem-centered work approach, play, use of imagination, and artistic activities promote conceptual and methodological competence, critical and creative thinking, and skills in applying one’s competence.
Our school’s classrooms do not solely function as the premises where learning takes place. Instead, our teachers and students take advantage of the teaching and learning opportunities around the whole school, including outdoor areas as flexible and dynamic learning environments.
Grade 5 student’s school day
The school gate opens already at 6.30am, but most of the students arrive briefly before the first lesson of the day at 7.30am. Fifth graders independently make their way to their own classroom.
Fifth graders start their day with a 30-minute homeroom time with their own class teacher. During that time, many daily practical topics can be covered or it can be used for study skills sessions ran by school counsellor or SEN teacher.
At 8am, fifth graders have two back-to-back lessons with a five-minute transition break in between. By way of example, they might first have a Qatar History lesson where the students form groups to create presentations, and then learn about the human body through Science and Art.
At 9.35am, the students go outside for their first break. The football field is a popular spot, as is the playground.
The students have another two lessons. Fifth graders can first have a language lesson, Arabic, French or Spanish, and then an English literature lesson. The class teacher and learning assistant collaborate in guiding and personalising the learning within the class.
For lunch, fifth graders go to the school canteen, where they can choose the healthy pre-ordered portion or eat the packed lunch they’ve brought with them from home.
After lunch, the students then enjoy a break where they go outside and move. Being active during the breaks helps the students concentrate on their studies once back in class. Break time equipment is available for students to use.
In the last two lessons of the day, the fifth graders might practice fractions with the help of music, and form groups to gather information about the solar system.
The Grade 5 day finishes at 2pm. Some students stay after school for ECAs – extra-curricular activities – but not before a quick snack at the canteen. Fifth graders can choose from a wide variety of ECAs, for example football, zumba or science.
Learning happens in unexpected ways: after finishing their homework assignments, a fifth grader may add new English phrases to their growing vocabulary through playing video games.