What is the PYP?The PYP (Primary Years Programme) is an inquiry-based educational framework that seeks to develop the whole child, in that it recognizes the importance of the academic, social, emotional, cultural and physical development of children from ages 3-12. The curriculum sets high standards and has high expectations of students. While the learning of information is still a major part of the PYP program, an emphasis is placed on the process of learning and students’ awareness and understanding of how to learn. As they develop into lifelong learners, students realize that learning is about being curious, asking questions and finding answers that lead to further questions.
The framework contains five essential elements: concepts, knowledge, skills, attitudes and action. These elements are developed through six themes that are applied across all subjects. The themes are: Who we are, Where we are in place and time, How we express ourselves, How the world works, How we organize ourselves, and How we share the planet. Knowledge is explored from local and global perspectives within these units of study. The IB standards are aligned with best practice in education and are supported by effective teaching practices. PYP teachers collaborate in the planning of units of inquiry both as grade level teams and as a whole faculty.
The IB maintains a learner profile of specific skills that schools must develop in students at every level of IB which has a positive impact on school culture. The IB Learner Profile seeks to develop students into individuals who are inquirers, thinkers, communicators, risk-takers, knowledgeable, principled, caring, open-minded, balanced and reflective. The goal of PYP and all IB programmes, according to the International Baccalaureate Organization, is to “develop internationally minded people who, recognizing their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world.” Developing lifelong learners who are positive contributors to society is something many schools strive to achieve.