by Kim Kriege, Secondary School English Language and Literature teacher and TOK Coordinator
Who owns knowledge?
Are some things unknowable?
What constraints are there on the pursuit of knowledge?
These are questions the students in Grade 11 Theory of Knowledge grapple with on a daily basis. Theory of Knowledge (TOK) is one of the three core elements of the IB Diploma Programme. It is a course that ‘explores questions about knowledge and the process of knowing...and encourages students to become more aware of their own perspectives and the perspectives of others.’ In essence, it is a course that develops critical thinking and perspective taking.
YIS Grade 11 students are currently completing their Theory of Knowledge Exhibition. It is an opportunity for students to demonstrate their understanding of how TOK manifests in the world around us.
For this task, students create an exhibition of three real-world ‘objects’ (or images of objects) and connect them to one of 35 challenging prompts, like the questions above.
A written commentary by the student accompanies each object, where they connect the prompt to TOK concepts and thematic issues. They are also encouraged to link their objects to their own experiences, and often use their personal and academic lives as springboards for their object choices. Students’ objects are diverse: Starbucks cups, stuffed animals, bookmarks, even their Physics textbooks!
All members of the YIS community are invited to attend the Grade 11 TOK Exhibition on Tuesday, May 2nd from 9:30am - 2:30pm. The event will take place in the Second Floor conference rooms. Visitors will be given access to an interactive tool on their phones to engage with students during the Exhibition. It will be a day of questions, discussion, and new ways of thinking! We hope you can join us!