6 April 2023

What does it mean to belong?

Junior School
What does it mean to belong?
What does it mean to belong?
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This term, the Kew Year 3 students’ inquiry unit was centred around the concept of ‘Belonging’. The focus of the students’ learning was about how we create a sense of belonging in our community through active citizenship.

In classroom discussion students shared their experiences about belonging to groups, such as their class and their Carey House. They recognised how the actions of others help their sense of belonging to these groups and in turn how their own actions can help others feel they belong.

As part of their learning, the students heard from several members of the Carey community who help others by volunteering. The students learnt about people who need support, both in their own community and around the world and the different ways people help others. We are very grateful to our speakers:

  • Stella Bao – CLOSA
  • Shalini Wilkinson – FareShare
  • Maddie Beck – Habitat for Humanity
  • Lee Taylor – teaching refugees from Myanmar and Afghanistan.

To illustrate their learning, the Year 3 students undertook two volunteering experiences each, with the goal to learn the importance of what it means to help others. Some of the experiences were:

  • gardening support for the Kew Rotary Club
  • creating decorations for CLOSA’s Harmony Week Morning Tea
  • maths support for Year 1 students
  • reading support for Prep students
  • helping Carey Maintenance staff
  • supporting Carey Community Engagement staff preparing for the Centenary Fair
  • sorting resources in the Carey Kew Early Learning Centre.
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Throughout the volunteering experiences, the students demonstrated the Carey values of Care and Respect. A sample of their reflections below also shows the Growth in their understanding of the importance and benefits of helping others:

‘I feel proud because I feel I made something better.’
‘I feel excited as I feel I have been kind and helped so many kids.’
‘I feel proud because I helped someone in our community.’
‘I felt joy, because I helped someone.’
‘I felt really happy because I was part of something that helped others.’
‘I felt grateful to have this opportunity.’

This inquiry unit developed the students’ understanding of community and the importance of creating a sense of belonging. It also built their confidence in the skills they possess to help others. We hope they continue to feel empowered as active citizens who have much to offer their community today and in the future.

Belinda Burr
Year 3 Teacher and Head of Barton House

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