Primary Years Program (Kindergarten to Grade 5)
Developed by educators from all over the world, the primary years program is designed for students in Kindergarten through grade 5. It engages students in a uniquely international program focused on the total growth of the developing child, touching hearts as well as minds. It embraces a structured in-depth inquiry into curriculum that complements the Alberta Education Program of Studies. Students engage in transdisciplinary themes that have global significance. They explore central ideas through an inquiry into the area that enhances student learning, and fosters an inquiring mind. The PYP culminates with an exhibition at the grade 5 level. The IB Learner Profile and PYP Attitudes are also important elements of the PYP program.
Primary Years Program Curriculum Model
The IB Primary Years Programme (PYP) is a curriculum framework designed for students aged 3 to 12. It focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. It is defined by six transdisciplinary themes of global significance, explored using knowledge and skills derived from six subject areas, with a powerful emphasis on inquiry-based learning.
PYP Concepts: What Do We Want Students to Understand?
Central to the philosophy of the PYP is the principle that purposeful, structured inquiry is a powerful vehicle for learning that promotes meaning and understanding, and challenges students to engage with significant ideas. Therefore, in the PYP there is also a commitment to a concept-driven curriculum as a means of supporting that inquiry. The PYP provides a framework for the curriculum, including eight key concepts as one of the essential elements. It is accepted that these are not, in any sense, the only concepts worth exploring. Taken together, they form a powerful curriculum component that inspires the teacher- and/or student-constructed inquiries that lie at the heart of the PYP curriculum.
- Form: What is it like?
- Function: How does it work?
- Causation: Why is it like it is?
- Change: How is it changing?
- Connection: How is it connected to other things?
- Perspective: What are the points of view?
- Responsibility: What is our responsibility?
- Reflection: How do we know?
Knowledge: What Do We Want Students to Know About?
The PYP recognizes that educating students in a set of isolated subject areas, while necessary, is not sufficient. Of equal importance is the need to acquire skills in context, and to explore content that is relevant to students and transcends the boundaries of the traditional subjects. Ernest Boyer proposed that students explore a set of themes representing shared human experiences such as "Response to the Asethetic" and "Membership in Groups". He referred to these as "Core Commonalities". In the PYP, this idea of human commonalities shapes the transdisciplinary themes.
- Who We Are
- Where We Are in Time & Place
- How We Express Ourselves
- How the World Works
- How We Organize Ourselves
- Sharing the Planet
Approaches to Learning Skills: What Do We Want Students to Be Able to Do?
There are five sets of skills that are acquired through all disciplines in the PYP programme:
- Thinking Skills
- Communication Skills
- Social Skills
- Research Skills
- Self-Management Skills
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