How The York School's Integrated Canadian Experience Programme promotes solutions-focused thinking to real work challenges among students.
As the United Nations meets to discuss some of the challenges we face on a global scale, many of our students are in the ‘Urban Classroom’ of Toronto learning first hand how to build fair and resilient communities.
Through the Integrated Canadian Experience (ICE) programme at The York School, the subjects of English, Canadian history, Canadian geography, and Civics are blended to highlight the interdependence between the fields. Through this uninterrupted academic approach, Grade 9 students can learn about the world around them through direct experience outside the classroom. They then apply their learning to intensive, full-process assignments in the classroom.
With cameras and journals in hand, our students explore the cityscape as they look for themes that emerge in the urban fabric. Examples include:
Riding bicycles on the Toronto Islands interviewing local residents, they examine the impact of decisions made about land use.
Visiting neighbourhoods like Regent and Alex Parks where they ask how civic governance and community involvement impacts the sustainability and livability of our city.
Diving into the Don Valley, they study the relationship between urban development, industry and the environment on everything from nature urban interactions to extreme weather resiliency
This citizen immersion programme helps students learn to see the city through a multitude of lenses. It allows them to think about how to bring the changes and adaptations we need to realize in the cities – and world - we want.
“Watching people step up to make a difference fills me with confidence that the human race is fully capable of fixing the challenges faced on this planet. The key is to start with community and show how your little corner of work connects to the global issue.”
— Ryan Cho
In this time of activism and elections, it is important to know the issues to inform our decisions and behaviour. When challenges seem overwhelmingly global in scale, it is important to find local solutions with demonstrable local impact where we can participate and feel like we are ‘part of the solution.’
Canada's first co-educational independent IB World School The York School is a co-educational JK to Grade 12 independent school located in the heart of Toronto. The York School was founded in 1965 and is the first school in Canada accredited to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) from junior kindergarten (JK) to university entrance. As an IB World School, The York School's motto is Experientia Docet or Experience Teaches.