Oakham's IB Diploma students took part in their Group 4 Project this week, which saw them facing a variety of difficult challenges. The Group 4 Project encourages students to develop key skills by focusing on the process of solving problems, rather than the actual outcome. It encourages students to think in a multidisciplinary way and to work well with others - both of which are central principles of the International Baccalaureate.
“The project successfully places challenges in front of a multidisciplinary team and gets them to reflect on the team members’ individual skills as well as create a scientific plan for their investigations within a tight time frame,” says Head of Science Dr John Chilton, who runs the Group 4 Project at Oakham.
The 50 students were split into 9 teams and were tasked with finding solutions to a number of problems using the resources around them together with a small set of supplies. Up to 9 points were awarded for each activity and a prize given to the winning team with the highest score.
This year, Oakham's IB Diploma students found themselves facing challenges as varied as making a spirit level, determining an unknown height, creating an Oakham School map, estimating how many peas are in a container without touching the jar, and solving a set of cryptic puzzles.
“The process also requires them not only to reflect on their strengths and weaknesses but also on how they solve the problems and how they could have done it better if they did it again," Dr Chilton concludes. "It develops teamwork and emphasises that the power of the team is far stronger than the sum of the individuals. And naturally, through such skill development, we hope that our young people will lead us to a bright future.”