Welcome to February’s edition where the coordinators of the Middle School section share with us relevant information on academic and social-emotional aspects.
During January 27th-29th the MUN club students participated in the CFMUN, where they showed their communication and research skills. Highlighting their IB learner Profile, attributes of risk-takers, principled, good communicators, reflective, open-minded, etc.
Maria del Pilar Mones Urtuzuástegui |Academic Coordination
Clubs at Middle School (curricular autonomy)
Autonomy is an innovative and flexible curricular component that was incorporated for the first time into the curriculum of basic education in Mexico in 2017. This third curricular component (in addition to Academic Training and Personal and Social Development), grants students the opportunity to learn topics of their interest, develop skills, overcome difficulties, strengthen their knowledge, their identity, and their sense of belonging. It also offers teachers opportunities for innovation, that is, spaces to experiment with new teaching intervention methodologies that allow them to renew their practice.
Curricular autonomy is of national observance, it gives the school the power to decide the curricular contents to be implemented based on the interests and needs of its students, their school day, their context, and the guidelines issued by the SEP to facilitate the exercise of spaces of curricular autonomy. Looking for an inclusive education in order to meet the specific needs and interests of each student and accommodate the great diversity of our country.
Research shows that students who score the best on assessments that measure the level of higher cognitive skills, such as PISA, spend time learning about other topics and developing other skills in extracurricular settings. Therefore, there seems to be a positive correlation between good academic performance and systematic dedication to playing an instrument, practicing sports, playing chess or doing community work. Studies have shown that students in Mexico are less likely to show poor academic performance when they attend schools that have a greater offer of extracurricular activities. With this premise, the Curricular Autonomy component is the space in which these development opportunities are offered that benefit their comprehensive training and their performance related to the other two curricular components: Academic Training Fields and Personal and Social Development Areas. As well as continuing to enhance our International Baccalaureate MYP programme by developing skills and attributes of the community profile.
On the other hand, this component creates the space to give concreteness to the General Law of the Rights of Girls, Boys and Adolescents, which establishes the right of girls, boys and adolescents to be heard and taken into account in matters of their interest, according to their age, evolutionary and cognitive development and their maturity.
PURPOSES OF CURRICULAR AUTONOMY FOR STUDENTS:
1. Expand your horizons and enhance the knowledge acquired.
2. Recognize your strengths and opportunities to continue learning.
3. Expand their development possibilities by interacting with students from other grades.
4. Take an interest that his/her actions benefit him/her and others, and act based on the principles of solidarity and respect.
5. Promote a harmonious and respectful coexistence in school and outside of it.
6. Consolidate your sense of belonging in the different areas of your life.
7. Recognize and value the diversity of your environment.
8. Guarantee their right to participate, to be heard and take them account.
THE 5 AREAS OF CURRICULAR AUTONOMY
1. Expand academic training
• Math Leveling
• Conversation in English
• French Certification
• English Certification
2. Promote personal and social development
• Musical assemble
• Recreation and free time
3. New relevant content
4. Regional knowledge
5. Social impact projects
Learning from failure
‘So it is well to cultivate a friendly feeling toward error, to treat it as a companion inseparable from our lives, as something having a purpose, which it truly has’ -Maria Montessori-
In the last newsletter we talked about awarding certificates and taking the IB programme a step further. However, not everything is as easy as just receiving the certificate and moving on.
Today I want to talk to you about what failure means and why it is so important to learning. At this point, self-management, reflective and thinking skills support this part of learning.
A study in the Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy published that studying in a way that offers more room for mistakes and engaging in self-reflection can strengthen critical thinking skills. Even if a student doesn’t get a correct answer on the first try, the act of self-reflection after making a mistake strengthens skills that will help them make well-informed decisions in the future. (Johannessen, 2004). According to Wenzel (2002) errors and failure develop tools such as problem solving.
And although students can learn in the classroom and gradually recognize the advantages of taking failure to their advantage, the reality is that the adults around them are the ones who are shaping this positive behavior into failure.
Mistakes can be inevitable, but so are learning and growth. If we allow ourselves and our students the freedom to fail a little, it can ultimately lead to lasting success (Wenzel. 2002).
Johannessen, L. (2004). Helping “Struggling” Students Achieve Success. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 47(8), 638-647. Retrieved January 13, 2021, from http://www.jstor.org/stable/40016898
Wenzel T. J. (2002). Using mistakes as learning opportunities. Analytical chemistry, 74(15), 439A–440A. https://doi.org/10.1021/ac022078z.
Most common mistakes in communicating with your teenager
Hello Celta community, today I want to talk about communication with your teenage children. Communication with adolescents has always been a controversial issue, some parents eagerly await their adolescent to share their day-to-day with them, receiving a “good” in response. On the other hand, we have teenagers who share their experiences openly. If you are one of the parents who receive a “good” for an answer, it is likely that you are making one of the following mistakes when communicating with your teenager. I hope this information help you, let’s start!
1. Listen to what your son or daughter says, let him finish, as parents we want to teach our teenagers about our experiences, however, when they are talking, do not interrupt them, remember that they are different social contexts and there are many things you could learn from them.
2. Peace of mind, Control your impulses! There will be many topics that you do not like at all, behaviors with which you disagree or go against what you have taught. Calm down! If your reaction is to scold him and yell at him, I’m sorry to tell you that this is the best way to close the communication channel. What you can do in these situations is to ask, what does your teenager think about it, why does he consider it good or bad, get to know your teenager before judging his/her behavior.
3. Do not judge, avoid making any kind of judgment towards their friends, remember that they identify with them, it is their circle that gives them identity and security. Criticizing your friends is criticizing them. When they feel judged, they will stop sharing their experiences, feelings, ways of thinking, etc. Ask them what they think about the actions of their friends, what they would do differently, what they do agree with.
4. Give importance to what she/he tells you, I have heard many times parents say comments like “you have everything (school, home, family, friends), I don’t know why you complain” “I didin´t have all the facilities you have, when I was your age”,“ When you become an adult, you are going to have real concern ”, etc. If your teenager shows you his/her vulnerable side, respect his/her emotion, validate it and teach him/her that nothing happens if he/she shows his/her vulnerability.
5. Do not give lessons, adolescents are little interested in the sermons that as parents we sometimes give. It is much more effective to explore how they think about a difficult situation, what solutions have they tried, what your teenager need form you as a parent. Show him that they are capable of getting ahead on their own.
6. Teach them to communicate their feelings, adolescents go through a roller coaster of emotions, if you notice your teenager angry, sad, irritated, avoid harassing them by asking them over and over again, what is wrong with them. Better let them know that you feel their emotions and that if they need it, you will be there to support them. Phrases like: “I notice you sad, if you need to talk about it, I’ll be there to listen to you.” “I notice you are upset, maybe you are not ready to talk about it, if I can help you with something, let me know.”
Written by : Psic. Paola Llop
BibliografíaVega N. (2018) ‘Comunicación entre padres e hijos adolescentes. Guía práctica para afrontar este momento’. Recuperado el 12 de enero de 2021 desde https://blog.cognifit.com/es/comunicacion-padres-hijos-adolescentes-guia/
Why is it so hard for us to finish a task? Complete the exercise routine that we only managed to do for three days, or finish reading the book that we started. Why is motivation no longer enough to achieve our goals?
We have the Force of Will, which is an excellent tool to put plans in motion and achieve our goals, such as those we set for ourselves at the beginning of the year. But what happens after a few weeks or a few months after having started when we are already tired from so much effort, physically exhausted, or with so much stress from work and school. We feel unmotivated once again because our fuel that is motivation runs out very soon and that as much as we want to achieve things, our willpower is not enough.
We have to remember that Willpower is like a muscle and it can be strengthened by exercising it and in the same way, we can exhaust it by excessive use. This is where Self-discipline comes in: the ability to carry out things regardless of our state of mind, making use of willpower and acquired habits.
It is important to consider the 3 aspects necessary to achieve self-discipline:
- Motivation: it can help us to solve many situations or achieve set objectives. But motivation depends entirely on our state of mind.
- Habits: These are behaviors that unconsciously adjust our behavior. These simplify our lives a lot by being able to carry out activities saving a lot of our energy and motivation.
- Personality: the last aspect of consistency and character, the habits that you achieve in your life, will be the ones that mold and shape your personality.
It is not easy to be self-disciplined, but you can work slowly. Below you will find 5 recommendations to grow in Self-discipline:
Train your Self-discipline in simple things: getting up or going to bed at the planned time, having time for reading, spending time on social networks, etc. In this way, you adapt your mind to achieve things constantly, over time.
Adjust your expectations to your abilities: so that the difficulty adjusts to the abilities of that moment and does not generate frustration by being something more complex than what can be achieved or something very simple that makes you lose interest.
Choose in what to use your willpower: it is important to identify when it has to be used.
Work Hard VS Work Smart: It doesn’t all have to be physical exhaustion. We can find ways to simplify our activities or by leaning on someone, delegating; with a little creativity we can optimize, that is, do more with less.
Monotask VS Multistak: although routine and responsibilities have led us to develop skills to be able to attend several activities at the same time … but having our attention divided has its costs. When we lose focus, we neglect activities that may be a priority, so spending time and attention on individual activities can yield better results.
Riverot, Phillipe. (2019). ¿Por qué no desarrollas autodisciplina?. 10/12/20, de Phillipe Riverot
Celis Maya, Juan Sebastián. (2019). Autodisciplina. 15/12/20, de Desarrollo Personal
Sitio web: https://www.sebascelis.com/autodisciplina/
Saéz, Francisco. (2019). El Hábito Nº1 que Necesitas: Autodisciplina. 11/12/20, de Facile Things
DATES TO REMEMBER
• FEBRUARY 12th – Friendship Day Celebration (St. Valentine´s Day)
• FEBRUARY 15th to 24th – P3 Exams
• FEBRUARY 19th – Class Adjourn
• Mónica Antuna (Middle School Principal) | email@example.com
• Ma. Del Pilar Mones (Academic Coordinator) | firstname.lastname@example.org
• Alicia Silva (MYP Coordinator) | email@example.com
• Paola Llop (Department of Psychopedagogy) | firstname.lastname@example.org
• Carlos Zermeño (Student Activities Coordinator) | email@example.com