Using Peer Support to Develop PYP Attitudes

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Like many schools around Australia my school uses the concept of Peer Support groups to develop cross age relationships and year 6 leadership skills. The Year 6 students are paired and given a small group to lead which contains students from each year group. in my school that generally means groups of eight or nine students, who meet fortnightly for half an hour at a time.

For the past few years we have used an purchased Peer Support program of timed activities. We have long felt though, that although this program is good, it just didn’t meet our students needs. So this year I have taken on the responsibility of introducing the PYP Attitudes through Peer Support.

These attitudes are the values that we want our students to show towards each other, themselves and the wider world.

Appreciation
Commitment
Confidence
Cooperation
Creativity
Curiosity
Empathy
Enthusiasm
Independence
Integrity
Respect
Tolerance

This has proved to be an excellent way to not only introduce them but to run Peer Support too. For me it has also been a fairly easy procedure. Type any of the words above into a search engine and numerous potential activities will pop up. There are Pinterest pages too developed by wonderful educators with more time that I have.

Firstly our groups created posters as their Peer Group Support essential agreements. Since then they have read books together on the topic of empathy.  Cooperated in games that do not have winners.  Developed confidence using dramatic role plays. Shown commitment in completing a jigsaw puzzle together and enthusiasm for craft activities.

So if you run Peer Support at your school consider writing your own program, these days it’s not as hard as it might seem. Don’t you just love the way that all around the world today ideas are shared.

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