Junior School Curriculum Overview
The International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (IBO PYP) at Junior School
ISB Junior School offers the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (PYP) which is designed for students aged 3 to 12. It focuses on the growth of the developing child touching hearts as well as minds and encompassing social, physical, emotional and cultural needs in addition to academic development.
It is a transdisciplinary programme of international education designed to foster the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both inside and outside the classroom
The programme provides a relevant, engaging, challenging and significant educational framework for all children and prepares them towards becoming active participants in a lifelong journey of learning.
It encourages international-mindedness, a positive attitude to learning and in-depth inquiry into real issues. Our teachers work towards preparing students to become internationally minded citizens with attributes outlined in the Learner Profile.
The IB PYP Learner Profile is a list of desired learning outcomes representing the curriculum’s aims and qualities that the programme will instil in the students.
Through an integrated approach to teaching and learning, we use a variety of differentiated teaching methods drawn from a range of exciting learning tasks and strategies applied to all key learning areas.
Specialist teachers plan and work collaboratively with classroom teachers to implement a transdisciplinary programme of inquiry.
This is achieved by integrating subject areas so students can make connections within the programme.
Subjects taught are Mathematics, Language, Science, Social Studies, The Arts.
Specialist Subjects include Music, Personal, Social and Physical Education, Information & Communication Technology, and German.
First Grade students move into a more formalised learning situation, so it is essential that they learn to make meaning of new concepts and skills. This is possible through the units of inquiry, which the students study and these topics help them make sense of their learning. In Grade 1, special attention is given to literacy and numeracy as they consolidate their understanding of numbers with the use of a variety of concrete materials. They are also encouraged to use a variety of mathematical and scientific language in their investigations. Also "formal" German language classes are introduced where the students engage in a variety of multi-sensory activities.
As they progress through their primary education, students are encouraged to develop self-management and thinking skills. In Grade 2, increasing emphasis is placed on becoming independent learners as they learn to develop valuable research skills, investigate differences and similarities, and compare and contrast. Developing positive learning attitudes is a high priority for students to become life long learners.
Students’ skills are developed and reinforced through challenging and engaging activities. The units of inquiry are specifically designed so they can apply these skills and solve problems in meaningful and relevant ways. Grade 3 students will be required to implement and refine their data handling skills, use both scientific and mathematical vocabulary to present findings and hypothesise. They will study topics with both global and local focuses relevant to them as international students. Students will be using information technology as a tool to research and collate information.
It is throughout Grade 4 that students increase their mastery of various skills, such as research and self-management, as they are provided with many transdisciplinary teaching and learning experiences. Application of their information technology (IT) skills is integral to learning as children use them constantly to inquire into various units, research specific information and organise their presentations and project work. Special emphasis is placed on being able to interpret information so as to learn about the past. Students make valuable connections about life today and in ancient times. Therefore it is essential that the students learn to effectively take notes and summarise information.
Is the culminating year of our students' PYP education. They benefit by working with a variety of teaching approaches and tools selected according to their various learning styles. It is within this year of schooling that students are working towards mastery of the transdisciplinary skills taught throughout the Primary years. These skills include communication, research, thinking, social and self-management skills, providing them with a solid foundation to confidently enter the Middle Years Programme. The ability to effectively work in a group for the attainment and presentation of information is highlighted in this grade.