Mentor Information

The PYP Exhibition - The Role of the Mentor

The PYP Exhibition marks a significant milestone in the learning journey of ISNS students and their teachers. It is a culmination of the PYP within our school and therefore, acts as summative assessment of our students’ understanding of the PYP philosophy as it applies to their learning. It also provides a wonderful lens through which to assess our effectiveness in the overall delivery of the PYP at our school.

Throughout the Exhibition process students combine the 5 Essential Elements of the PYP [1](knowledge, concepts, skills, attitudes, and action) and the IB Learner Profile[2] in a collaborative inquiry process and final presentation.

[1] See Making the PYP Happen (2009) pp. 10-27

[2] See Making the PYP Happen (2009) and/or IB Learner Profile Booklet

The PYP Exhibition has a number of key purposes:

  •  Students engage in an in-depth collaborative inquiry into an issue of global and local significance.
  •  To provide students with an opportunity to demonstrate independence and responsibility for their own learning.
  •  To provide students with an opportunity to explore multiple perspectives.
  •  For students to synthesize and apply their learning of previous years and to reflect upon their journey through the PYP.
  •  To provide an authentic process for assessing student understanding.
  •  To demonstrate how students can take action as a result of their learning.
  •  To unite students, teachers, parents and other members of the school community in a collaborative experience that  incorporates the 5 Essential Elements of the PYP.  
  •  To provide students an opportunity to exhibit the attributes of the IB Learner Profile.
  •  To celebrate the transition of learners from the Primary Years Programme to the Middle Years Programme.


The PYP Mentor plays an essential role in the PYP Exhibition process. As a mentor, you will serve as an experienced and trusted adult who will help students plan, problem solve, and reflect upon their collaborative inquiry process as they prepare for and present their exhibition. The mentor’s primary role is to act as a guide and resource in the accomplishment of specific tasks and weekly goals during the exhibition process. You will help the students set and meet their goals by:

·      asking questions;

·      suggesting resources;

·      helping to interpret difficult information;

·      facilitate interviews and communication to obtain primary source information

 Groups will meet with their mentors on a weekly basis, or as needed. As a mentor, you should help students monitor their progress and assist them in setting new goals. Mentors will facilitate discussions with their groups following a suggested structure to the meetings to ensure goals are being met by the group.  Mentors may complete reflection and feedback forms for the group or provide information about the progress of the group directly to the homeroom teacher.  It is not the role of the mentor to complete work for the students, or tell students how they should present their learning.

 Ultimately, the students are accountable for meeting deadlines and completing their work – you can help students self-assess their progress/effectiveness and divide the workload equitably.

The students are responsible for contacting and organizing meetings with their mentor(s). They also take ownership of documenting and recording what was discussed at each meeting.

There are two main roles a mentor can play:

1. Assigned to a specific group of students to help guide their inquiry (groups of 2-4 students)

2. Expert mentor who can provide specific expertise to various groups in a support area (i.e. Visual Arts, Music, PSPE, Science, IT, or any other talent/expertise you may possess)


  • Weekly meetings with student groups to establish goals within the timeframe based on expectations/criteria set out by the Grade 5 teachers;
  •           facilitate ongoing reflection;
  •           advise/guide students;
  •           help interpret challenging information;
  •           help arrange phone calls/interviews;
  •           facilitate problem solving to ensure equal distribution of work load and individual group member’s accountability.
  • Guide students as they consider the action component of the Exhibition:
  •          is it meaningful, relevant, and appropriate? (NOTE: Participation in the exhibition is considered action, as the students are fully involved in the planning, development and presentation of their work. The exhibition MAY lead to action in a range of forms, which might include a community service element.[1])
  • Provide ongoing feedback regarding the group’s and/or individual’s progress to the students and teachers. Ensure teachers are aware of any students of concern.
  • CELEBRATE with the students on their achievements during our Exhibition Days on May 4th and 5th, 2017!


·      Throughout the months of March/April/May students will be working in small groups in different locations, so any noise issues or behavior concerns that cannot be easily resolved should be brought to the attention of Grade 5 teachers immediately.