The IB Primary Years Programme i.e. Curriculum Framework

 

The IB curriculum framework at Ras Al Khaimah Academy PYP provides for the development of the whole child. The PYP is a uniquely international programme focusing on the total growth of the developing child; encompassing social, physical, emotional and cultural needs in addition to academics.

 

The PYP provides a shared, transdisciplinary curriculum for primary schools, with a balanced programme of concepts, knowledge, skills, attitudes and actions. The PYP transdisciplinary curriculum brings individual disciplines together into a coherent whole, while preserving the essence of each single subject.

 

The approach to learning focuses on children developing skills and acquiring knowledge that will assist them in becoming successful lifelong learners. Children are encouraged to participate in the development of learning experiences and are challenged to hypothesize, reflect, question and test in order to construct their own understandings and thus gain further knowledge.

 

At Ras Al Khaimah Academy PYP, we set high standards and high expectations, as teachers collaboratively plan the curriculum to ensure coherent education. Our curriculum incorporates a range of assessment, reporting and recording strategies in order to give parents clear information about their children’s progress. Ras Al Khaimah Academy parents receive this information via newsletters, parent-teacher conferences, the sharing and displaying of student’s learning, student-led conferences and parent information sessions.

 

At Ras Al Khaimah Academy your child will develop, acquire and practice a range of essential skills and be encouraged to develop positive attitudes towards their own learning, the environment and others. Students at Ras Al Khaimah Academy will also have the opportunity to be involved in responsible action and service learning e.g. charity fund raising.

 

The Learner Profile is a key driver of the PYP curriculum.

The PYP Curriculum Model

 

Effectively, the Primary Years Programme curriculum model is illustrated by six interconnected circles with the IB Learner Profile at the centre. 

 

Knowledge: What do we want students to know?

 

While the PYP acknowledges the importance of traditional subject areas (language, mathematics, social studies, science,

personal, social and physical education, and arts), it also recognizes the importance of acquiring a set of skills in context

and of exploring content which transcends the boundaries of the traditional subjects and is relevant to students.

Our students conduct research into knowledge which has local and global significance.

 

Transdisciplinary Themes

 

(Each year level from KG2 to Grade 5 will complete one unit under each theme)

 

The most significant feature of the programme is the six transdisciplinary themes, and they are represented in the second outermost circle.

 

These themes are about issues that have meaning for, and are important to, all of us. The programme offers a balance between learning about or through the subject areas, and learning beyond them. The six themes of global significance create a transdisciplinary framework that allows students to “step up” beyond the confines of learning within subject areas. 

 

1.Who we are

An inquiry into the nature of the self; beliefs and values; personal, physical, mental, social and spiritual health; human relationships including families, friends, communities and cultures; rights and responsibilities; what it means to be human.

 

2.Where we are in place and time

An inquiry into orientation in place and time; personal histories; homes and journeys; the discoveries, explorations and migrations of humankind; the relationships between and the interconnectedness of individuals and civilizations from local and global perspectives.

 

3.How we express ourselves

An inquiry into the ways in which we discover and express ideas, feelings, nature, culture, beliefs and values; the ways in which we reflect on, extend and enjoy our creativity; our appreciation of the aesthetic.

 

4.How the world works

An inquiry into the natural world and its laws; the interaction between the natural world (physical and biological) and human societies; how humans use their understanding of scientific principles; the impact of scientific and technological advances on society and on the environment.

 

5.How we organize ourselves

An inquiry into the interconnectedness of human-made systems and communities; the structure and function of organizations; societal decision-making; economic activities and their impact on humankind and the environment.

 

6.Sharing the planet

An inquiry into rights and responsibilities in the struggle to share finite resources with other people and with other living things; communities and the relationships within and between them; access to equal opportunities; peace and conflict resolution.

 

These six transdisciplinary themes help teachers to develop a programme of inquiry. In-depth investigations into important ideas, identified by the teachers, and requiring a high level of involvement on the part of the students. These inquiries are substantial, in-depth and usually last for several weeks. From KG 2 to Year 6, each year group will study all of the six transdisciplinary themes through six separate “units of inquiry”, although there will be a different focus each time they revisit it. 

 

Pre K and KG1 study four of the transdisciplinary themes through their units of inquiry during the year.

 

The six transdisciplinary themes surround six subject areas:

  • languages English and Arabic

  • social studies

  • mathematics

  • arts

  • science

  • personal, social and physical education

 

Your child will acquire and practice a wide range of essential skills in the six subject areas.

 

The units of inquiry integrate these subjects. Scope and sequence documents which outline the progression of learning in each subject area are used by the teachers to ensure coverage.

 

Assessment is an integral part of the teaching and learning cycle. It is central to supporting the School’s vision and mission, the PYP Learner profile and five essential elements of learning: the acquisition of knowledge, the understanding of concepts, the mastering of skills, the development of attitudes and the decision to take action. The prime objective of assessment in the PYP is to provide feedback on the learning process to all stakeholders.

 

The children are assessed for their progress throughout the year in the six units of inquiry. Written reports are issued termly and will focus on student achievement and progress in learning. Teacher comments will focus on what has been taught, and will be supported by specific evidence and will show strengths and areas to work on. Additionally, parents are invited to student and teacher led-conferences throughout the year.  www.ibo.org

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