Embracing Cultural Diversity 

Through Dance: Grade 9 PHE

In the ever-evolving landscape of education, it is crucial to foster a deep understanding and appreciation of different cultures and traditions. The Grade 9 Physical and Health Education (PHE) Year 4 Unit on International Dance serves as an exceptional platform for students to explore the rich tapestry of global dance forms. By engaging in research, planning, and performance, students not only honed their dance skills but also cultivated vital Approaches to Learning (ATL) skills, such as research, information literacy, and creative thinking.

Research and Information Literacy:

The criterion B assessment tasked students with researching and designing a cultural dance while explaining its significance within their planning. This stage encouraged students to delve into the historical and cultural contexts of various dance forms, honing their research skills and fostering their ability to access, interpret, judge, and create information. Stephanie Y. shared her experience, stating, “Our group chose the most famous Chinese traditional dance, Xinjiang Uyghur dance, to perform. We researched its origins, significance, and intricacies, ensuring our dance portrayed its essence accurately.”

Creative Thinking and Originality:

The unit also emphasized the development of creative thinking skills, prompting students to generate novel ideas and consider new perspectives in their dance routines. Jessica L. reflected on her K-pop dance performance, stating, “Creating a dance with five people was super challenging. Although we encountered some difficulties in synchronization, we worked hard and did our best. Our dance was unique, different from other K-pop groups, and we were proud of our creativity.”

ATL Skills in Action:

Throughout the unit, students demonstrated their ATL skills while aligning with the IB learner profile attributes of being inquirers, communicators, and open-minded individuals. Their research and information literacy skills allowed them to access information from diverse sources, critically evaluate it, and incorporate it into their dance planning effectively. They communicated their ideas, collaborated with their peers, and embraced different perspectives, thereby fostering an inclusive and respectful learning environment.

Performance and Reflection:

The culmination of the unit was a criterion C performance, where students showcased their two-minute International Dance routines to the entire class. Jolie Z. highlighted the dedication and effort put into the rehearsal process, stating, “We spent both class time and after-school hours to improve our dance. Our formation, rehearsals, and overall neatness were well-executed, though we acknowledge the areas for improvement.”

Nanako M. highlighted the challenges faced during the process but celebrated the successful completion of their choreography. She stated, “We faced obstacles, such as members being unable to attend practices. However, through effective communication and teamwork, we presented our choreography successfully, making use of our class time and scheduling additional practice sessions outside of school.”

Impactful Performances:

The unit showcased a range of captivating performances, leaving a lasting impression on the students. Jessica L. expressed her admiration for Yuki H.and Maggie Q’s ballet dance, praising their elegant movements and storytelling ability. Furthermore, she commended their exceptional control during turns and jumps, illustrating their dedication and preparation.

The Grade 9 PHE Year 4 unit on International Dance was a remarkable journey that empowered students to embrace cultural diversity and develop a deeper understanding of global dance forms. Through research, creative thinking, and performance, students not only honed their dance skills but also showcased their ATL skills, including research, information literacy, and creative thinking. By fostering the IB learner profile attributes of inquirers, communicators, and open-minded individuals, this unit created an inclusive and enriching environment for students to explore the world through dance. The PHE Department is proud of the grade 9 students for their efforts. Well done Bobcats!