Sophomores Bring their A-Game as Personal Project Deadline Approaches
By: Eliza Bryant
Sophomores are feeling the press as the due date approaches for a project they have been working on for months. In early October, sophomores began working on their IB Personal Projects– a requirement for all 10th graders in the IB Middle Years Program– by selecting a topic and setting a goal that they would like to achieve on that topic. Students were encouraged to choose any topic at all, as long as it reflected their interests and they were learning something new. This led to a wide variety of goals, including sneaker restoration, cooking, creative writing, sports videos, makeup, and many more.
The Personal Project is not easy, but our sophomores are capable Wildcats. One of the central rules of the project is that it cannot be completed through a class, which means that the vast majority of the work must be done outside of school. For this reason, each student was assigned a teacher as a mentor to help them through the process. Students were required to research their topic, draw on their own background knowledge, create a plan of action, and draft a specific criteria of how they envisioned their finished product to be successful– all before they could begin making their actual project. Students have been documenting this process in “Process Journals”, which they will submit excerpts of with their projects when they turn them in.
Finished products were due on February 1st, which was an exciting day. Student brought in handmade tutus, photography portfolios, candles, soccer jerseys, short stories, posters, lipstick, wigs… you name it! Students and their mentors were showing off all of the excellent and inspiring work. Throughout the month of February, students have been working on a lengthy report (5 pages minimum!) about their experience working on such a long and independent project from start to finish while also reflecting on their process. The report will be submitted along with their process journal and their finished product, all of which is due on March 2.
After projects are handed in, teachers will score them using the IB rubrics, and then send a small number of projects all the way to Switzerland, where the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) is headquartered. There, the IBO will review and score Clemente students’ work. From Chicago, to Europe, and beyond!