Our Grade 5 students are currently inquiring into the unit about-Messages. We started our inquiry with a provocation, where students were divided into groups and each group was given a pamphlet, slogans, messages and newspaper cutouts to share their views about “What they see/observed?” They came up with words such as communication and text messages.
During the inquiry, we further provoked our students through questions such as “What do you think the message is all about?”, “Why do we need these messages?” “What are the different ways to communicate effectively with people?” This helped them understand the importance of a message in communicating an idea.
Further, our students started in depth inquiry with questions like “Who is the message directed to?” and “Why is it important to convey a message?” Such questions lead them towards – “Target audience and understanding that the target audience is/are person/s or group of people (a piece of writing is) intended to reach”.
Next, our students researched about various products which are intended to reach target audience through a piece of writing. They came up with products such as chocolates, books, electronic gadgets, and so on in order to understand and analyze the challenges faced during the real-time approach. Next, they planned to design a product in order to reach their target audience. Students designed the product using the “Design thinking” process.
Design thinking is a process which helps us to know the requirements of the end users, challenges to meet these requirements of the end users, and finally the process ends by coming up with innovative solutions. Design thinking is a process which plays a vital role when you want to have a perfect solution for an unknown problem. In Design thinking approach our prime focus is on requirement of our end users.
Initially, students were divided into groups based on the products of their choice. They decided their goal/s, target audience, and started framing questions to conduct a survey to design their product. Each group framed varied questions as they were based on the product of that particular group.
Students who chose chocolate framed questions such as “What is the size of the chocolate you prefer?”, “What is your favorite flavor?”, “What is the cost of the chocolate which will attract you to buy it?” are few to list down. With such questions, our students conducted a survey in school. They noted down the requirements of the product from their target audience. Once the survey was completed, they started designing their product based on the requirements specified by the customers during the survey.
Now, the product was ready and they started making their plans to reach out to the customer. Students once again framed questions to check whether their customers would like the product or not. They included questions regarding slogans too i.e., the message they were trying to convey regarding their product, “How they advertised?” and the medium used to advertise. With these questions, they conducted their second survey to ensure that the target audience liked their product.
Finally, based on the requirements, students customized the product to surpass the set expectations. This activity enabled them to develop critical-thinking skills, creative skills, exchanging-information skills and problem-solving skills by connecting their classroom learning to real-time scenarios.
At The Gaudium School, these are a few from the list of our experiences during our journey through unit of inquiry. Such experiences guided our students to explore more about the unit, develop self-efficacy, demonstrate their learning and create awareness among the learning community. It was amazing to see our students’ research about “How to attract their target audience?” and for this they came up with catchy slogans and eye-catching designs.