Complete with a school, police station, toy shop, bakery, pizza restaurant, local bank and library, as well as roads and traffic lights, kindergarten through second grade students at Daniel Warren Elementary School have created their own model of a community, called Wonderville.
Inspired by the community that surrounds Rye Neck, each class was tasked with creating their own building out of cardboard and decorating it to resemble a real location in their community. Throughout the year, they have been focused on exploring three topics of study as part of their school’s new inquiry-based learning space, the Wonder Studio, which launched at the beginning of the school year. Each study – Garden, Architecture and Community – provided them with opportunities to wonder, discover, explore and create.
“This interactive opportunity allowed students and staff the chance to consider the significance and roles that people, places and shared ideas play in the creation of a community,” said library and media teacher Leigh Ann Kowalchick-Porphy, who spearheaded the activity. “It also allowed students an authentic opportunity to consider why community is important to us all.”
The student-created community served as a culminating project to the students’ experiences and exploration of the concept of community.
“As an inquiry-based learning space, the Wonder Studio is all about the process of asking questions and the exploration and discoveries we make as we find the answers to our questions,” Kowalchick-Porphy said.