Artful LearningBlogBlog 11: Systems

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July 20, 2020


Shannon Hattyar’s class at Willow Elementary completed their unit on the concept of “Systems” through distance learning due to COVID-19. It was important for her students to understand why systems are necessary and how they are all around us. They learned that there are systems of government, systems in our bodies, systems in the animal kingdom, technological systems, and systems people follow to be successful.

In one of the Inquiry Centers, the students were asked two Significant Questions for Systems in Human and Animal Communities. These questions were, “how do different systems shape the lives of ants” and “how do different systems and structures shape the lives of humans?” Hattyar’s students learned about the unique systems that ant colonies have in place where the worker ants, male ants, and the Queen all have crucial roles. They also learned about how the United States has a system of checks and balances within the judicial, legislative, and executive branches of government.

Abstract 1 - Cherries Abstract 2 - Astronaut

In another Inquiry Center, the students were asked, “how do artists apply different art techniques and processes to create their own style of art” as their Significant Question. They learned about Pablo Picasso and his unorthodox methods for creating different types of art. Since Picasso’s art techniques shifted from realistic to abstract as he got older, Hattyar’s class experimented with creating their own art in the abstract space. Some examples that her students uploaded to their classroom Seesaw account are included.

Abstract 3

Another Inquiry Center asked, “how does the Central Nervous System help us use experience and understand the world around us” as the Significant Question. They learned about the different parts of the brain and what functions they serve the human body. The class even watched different portions of the film, “Inside Out,” to understand how their brains are responsible for the mixed emotions and feelings they feel when they experience the world around them. The students drew their own brain murals and included images representing the different ways they use the left and right sides of their brains.

Brain Systems Drawing Brain Systems 2 - Graphic

It was vital for Hattyar’s class to complete their unit on “Systems” during their distance learning. She was very organized and clear in her students’ instructions, so they were able to finish their tasks remotely and successfully. Artful Learning’s structure makes it possible for educators to continue their units of study even when the classroom is unavailable. Hattyar's students received a perfect example of how the systems they used to continue their learning through Seesaw and Google classroom are incredibly useful, and all around them to complete everyday tasks.

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