/On the TOK Orientation Workshop

On the TOK Orientation Workshop

My foray into the Diploma Programme has been marked by several shifts, one of the more prominent being a strong towards critical scrutiny of the knowledge that surrounds us in our academic and non-academic spaces. The Theory of Knowledge course stands out in facilitating the aforesaid as it allows me to analyze how knowledge is constructed, shared, and should not be accepted without the proverbial pinch of salt! True to DP tradition, our tentative steps into the space were supported in an orientation workshop on TOK – as it would help us understand the underpinning principles of the course. Although somewhat delayed, we were in attendance at the long-awaited TOK session on the 30th of August. My DP1 peers had eagerly gathered in MPH2 to participate in this as a team. Prior to the session, we had been asked to bring charged laptops in anticipation for a fun game or quiz that we would play later in the class. I felt quite curious about what was to take place in this mindbender of a space.

We were introduced to the knowledge questions and how they are different from the debatable questions that we encounter in MYP. This tapping into our prior knowledge helped immensely! Moving as we had begun from debatable to contestable questions, the TOK concepts came to our rescue! After a short entry ticket, we understood the definitions of the core theme and the concepts. Next, in the activity, we were engrossed in a riveting activity where we had to fill in a form that included various images that were quite diverse and unique to the aforesaid concepts.

I feel my friends and I understood the core theme and the concepts while probing their applications in images, no matter how abstract and daunting they may seem. In some of the images, I felt that many TOK concepts could apply but there was always one that stood out amongst the rest the most. Although there is a strong interdependence between the concepts, we were choosing our strongest contender basis our understanding of the object and its context. My main takeaway, therefore, was how these concepts crisscross our understanding while constantly interacting with each other to support our incipient efforts at creative and critical learning. Critical as we are critically analysing and creative as we are divining new connections while participating in that exercise.

Neel Srivastava, DP1E