My IB Open – OCC Now Closed – Time for Sharing Resources

My IB Communities Just a reminder that the OCC is now closed, so time for all Design Technologists to head over to MyIB to connect with official IB Diploma resources for the Design Technology programme alongside access to Communities. The DT Forum group Communities are the forum elements of the new MyIB centre—where you can either create a new forum based around a subject or area of IB education or join another. At the moment there is only one forum set ...

MOOCs, Artificial Intelligence, and Models of Thinking

A little background reading for this post: First, a quick Wikipedia definition of MOOC: 'A massive open online course is an online course aimed at unlimited participation and open access via the web. In addition to traditional course materials such as filmed lectures, readings, and problem sets, many MOOCs provide interactive user forums to support community interactions among students, professors, and teaching assistants (TAs). MOOCs are a recent and widely researched development in distance education which were first introduced in 2006 and emerged as a popular mode of learning in 2012.' ...

The Ten-Year Rule

I have decided that, when school resumes in January, I will give my students an assignment in which I will ask them to analyse the IB's 10-year rule and determine if they think that it is a well-reasoned rule. This morning, I was reading an essay by Umair Haque titled What Do You Call a World That Can’t Learn From Itself? Although it begins as a criticism of the US and its decline in standard of living, especially when compared to Europe, ...

6/VACAF, EE/RPPF and EE/CS

(Don't you love acronyms?) I lead DP visual arts workshops, both online and face-to-face, and just before Christmas finished my last visual arts workshop of 2017. It was a category 1 and these are invariable full, packed and busy—so much to cover, so little time to do it in! As ever it was a lively and enjoyable workshop, but a couple of things sometimes seem to get pushed to the back of the line and possibly overlooked—visual arts coursework authentication, reflection on the extended ...

Some Ideas for Thinking about World Literature

I've been poring over some materials I've used in workshops on 'Literature in Translation,' and thought it might be useful to share some of these resources and add in a frequent question about the Written Assignments. These articles are variable in their weightiness, but there are likely to at least be bits and pieces that you may find useful for deepening your own thinking or some ideas to explore in your classes. I like the following for its range of views ...

The Development of the Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen

Yemen was already the poorest country in the Middle East before the outbreak of war in 2014 between the Houthi rebels and government forces. Since then Yemen has experienced the largest outbreak of cholera in the modern world and is on the brink of the harshest famine the world has seen for decades. Over 20 million people (out of a population of 28 million) are in need of help. The fighting involves many groups of people and goes back many years. ...

Teaching the Halogens: Some Ideas

How do you teach about the halogens? I am in the middle of teaching about them and thought it was worth telling you how I introduce the topic. I do like this topic as it provides lots of opportunities to link together parts of the course. Firstly, I will start with some theory, things such as the fact that the halogens are diatomic and are the only group whose members exist as solids, liquids and gases at room temperature. This then leads into ...

Humanist Thoughts for the Festive Season

The festive season is traditionally a time dedicated to the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ and the Christian message of love and peace between all men and all nations. This period of self-collected meditation may also become an opportunity for reflecting on the human condition. William James was the first to offer a purely psychological interpretation of the religious experience away from theological dogmas. His approach was scientific and in this respect the American thinker assumed a non ...

Why Cite?

I want to share an interesting research report with you, which I learned about from IB ÜberLibrarian John Royce's blog, Honesty, honestly... in a post titled WHYs before the event, posted on 6 November 2017. Royce introduces us to a paper by Allison Hosier (of the University of Albany, SUNY) published in the Communication in Information Literacy (CIL) Vol 9, No 2 (2015),  Teaching information literacy through “un-research” . In the Abstract, Hosier writes: Students who write essays on research topics in which no outside sources are ...

Natural Assumptions?

Arguably, every piece of knowledge that has ever been produced has been based on an assumption or a set of assumptions. No knowledge can be produced in a vacuum, which means that the search for knowledge always has a starting point that will generally provide the kind of questions being asked as well as the parameters of that search. One of the most important tasks for TOK students is to identify the assumptions which underpin the production of knowledge in ...