What does it entail to appreciate others who help us daily? Often others can fall into the background and become part of the routine, where we forget what they do and the assistance that they give to each of us. Each Early Years Class investigated into what our lives would be like if we didn’t have: the cooks preparing our delicious lunches, the housekeeping staff who help tidy our mess, the gardener’s who collect our bamboo, flowers and leaves (in abundance), our maids who help us within our classes and on the bus, the drivers who get us to and from school safely everyday, the security guards who keep us safe and for the maintenance team who help with the upkeep of our school equipment.
This really made the children think about the community of workers at our school and what it takes to keep it running daily, not only for our classes but for the whole school. They started to generate ideas on what we could do to thank them. The classrooms were buzzing with ideas ‘we could jump out from a box to surprise them; ‘we could make cards to thank them; we could give them gifts; we could make thank you cards; we could give them food’- were some of the ideas generated by PS1, 2 & 3
The process was a huge task. The school employs 112 supporting staff, all having different rotational shifts and priorities for the day. The teachers began collaboration with administrators to determine when we could impact the most staff. The school donated gifts, the teachers made food and the children gave up a big sacrifice….. play! When discussing how we could complete a task of this size the children realised that there was a lot of work to be done. They busily set about making cards but realised that there were only 40 PS children and so many support staff to make cards for. Without worry they busily made 2-3 cards each. They started to think about how they could decorate a venue and remembered lessons learnt from the ‘Sharing the planet’ unit- they were sure that they wanted to use recyclable materials.
Behind the scenes, the teachers came together to cook and prepare snacks for the staff. Each leaving work later than usual; arranging ingredients, venues, staff and equipment. The children decorated the venue with their best efforts. They collected flowers, set tables and were on their best behaviour. The staff were greeted with a welcome speech in Marathi, where they were given the reasons behind this celebration. The staff stood attentively listening to the beautiful song and actions, that the children had prepared, with smiles upon their faces. To finish it off they had delicious home cooked food whilst the children waited patiently to give them thank you cards and gifts.
The students reflected and stated ‘l liked it because we said thank you in our language’ which consisted of Japanese, Korean, English, Hindi, Marathi, German, French, Swiss, Czech, Italian and Dutch. They said that ‘I like giving the cards; I liked singing for didis and bhaiyas.’ The support staff, held their hands in thanks and said dhanyabad, they were very impressed with the team effort and really appreciated the effort that the Early Years Team had gone to.
All who contributed showed the international-mindedness that MBIS emulates. They showed that we are a caring community; inquirers and thinkers when planning the event; principled and responsible with actions and words; reflective, when thinking about what others do for us; knowledgeable when discussing the roles of our school community; open-minded with many ideas and became more aware that it is not just people who have direct contact with us, but those who support the schooland communicators to sing their song in front of a large audience. They were also agile learners as they realised some tasks needed extra time and more volunteers and happily supported this. They contributed positively towards our Community.
The Early Years Team and Students.