What is IB?
IB-International Baccalaureate, is an international educational institution founded in 1968, based in Switzerland. The objective of IB (International Baccalaureate) is to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people, who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.
In order to achieve this, the IB schools work with governments and international organizations, and develop programmes based on international education, allowing versatile assessment of the learners’ development and enabling them to put to use their potential in the best possible way. These programmes encourage learners from all over the world to be individuals that are active, loving, and lifelong learners who comprehend that others can be right, despite their differences.
IB-International Baccalaureate offers four educational programmes:
⦁ Primary Years Programme (PYP) – Introduced in 1997
⦁ Middle Years Programme (MYP) – Introduced in 1994
⦁ Diploma Programme (DP) – Introduced in 1969
⦁ The International Baccalaureate Career-related Certificate (IBCC) – Introduced in 2012
All IB programmes encourage learners to possess an international mind-set to help build a better and more peaceful world through the awareness of humanity and of the planet we share.
What is IB/PYP?
IBPYP (International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme) is a programme of IB, which covers children between the ages 3-12, and its objective is to create a curriculum that is interesting to learners, compels to thinking and is transdisciplinary. It is believed at PYP that it becomes true when learning is at its best and authentic, when it’s about reality and is transdisciplinary, and when it’s not limited to traditional studies but enriched with the support of these studies.
Learner profile attributes located in the center of the IB PYP Programme;
The objective of the IB programme is to develop people who possess an international mind-set to help build a better and more peaceful world through the awareness of humanity and of the planet we share.
IB learners work to possess these attributes:
Inquirers: We nurture our curiosity by developing the necessary skills to conduct inquiry. We know how to learn independently and with others. We learn with enthusiasm, and our compassion for learning sustains throughout our life.
Knowledgeable: We use knowledge with a conceptual understanding by filtering it through a range of disciplines.
Thinkers: We use critical and creative thinking skills to solve complex problems. We use initiative to make reasoned and ethical decisions.
Communicators: We express ourselves with more than one language, confidently and creatively in many ways. We cooperate effectively by listening carefully to the perspectives of other individuals and groups.
Principled: With integrity and honesty, a strong understanding of fairness and justice, we act with respect to the dignity and rights of all people. We take responsibility for our actions and their consequences.
Open-minded: We appreciate the values and cultures of others in addition to our own cultures and individual histories. We seek and evaluate different perceptions, and mature with our experiences.
Caring: We empathize and show compassion and respect. We believe in the obligation to serve, and act to make a positive difference in the lives of others and the environment.
Risk takers: We approach uncertainty with caution and determination. We work independently and jointly to research new ideas and innovative observations. We are skilled and durable against challenges and change.
Balanced: We know the importance of balancing between the different aspects of life to enable the well-being of ourselves and of others (Intellectual, physical and emotional.) We are aware of the solidarity with others and the world we live in.
Reflective: We think deeply about the world, our own ideas and experiences. We make an effort to understand our strengths and limitations to support our learning and personal development.
Learners becoming agents;
In order for learners to become an agent, it is necessary to create an educational environment where their voices are heard, they have the right to speak and choose, and an environment which they can embrace. Learners take responsibility for their own learning during the course of the learning process, they collaborate with teachers and other learners when planning, presenting and evaluating their learning needs. Teachers appreciate the abilities of the learners by listening to their ideas, respecting these ideas through reaction. They make well thought out evaluations and decisions, which emphasize respect for one another, in relationships and dialogues.
Teachers who support becoming an agent;
- To individualize learning, they recognize and reflect on the learners’ current abilities, needs and interests
- They listen actively to the learners’ ideas, curiosities, perspectives and desires to further their thinking and actions
- They support originality by providing learners open ended tasks to explore their interests
- They present learners with opportunities to exhibit their creativity and take risks
- They reflect on when the learner needs help or not, by using assessment evidences for learning and teaching
- They listen and react to activities of every learner to further their thinking
They exhibit being an agent when they:
- Drive their learning process towards their needs,
• Make choices,
• Voice their views,
• Ask questions and express their curiosity on matters of interest,
• Share their comprehensions,
• Create new meanings,
• Contribute to the learning process by participating to the learning community.
Basis of learning approaches taken by IB:
⦁ The Approaches to Learning (ATL), is based in the belief that learning how to learn is the basis of a learners’ education.
⦁ The five interrelated categories and connected skills and sub-skills, support learners of all ages to become self-regulated learners.
⦁Teachers jointly plan closed and open opportunities to develop learning approaches inside and outside of the inquiry programme by using a set of strategies. These skills, which have been grouped under 5 headings, are extremely important not only in terms of the learning process, but also of the daily life of the learner in and outside of school. It is possible for schools to shape the sub-skill lists in accordance to their needs.
1) Thinking Skills
- Critical thinking skills (analysis and assessment of problems and ideas)
- Creative thinking skills (development of original ideas and assessment of new perspectives)
- Transfer skills (the use of skills and knowledge in multiple contexts)
- Reflective thinking/meta-cognitive skills (continuity in the assessment of the learning process)
2) Inquiry skills
• Information literacy skills (creation and planning, data collection and saving, synthesizing and interpreting, assessing and transmitting)
• Media literacy skills (using media tools to use and create ideas and information)
• The ethical use of media and information
3) Communication skills
• Exchange of information skills (listening, interpreting, speaking)
• Literacy skills (reading for gathering and communicating, reading, writing and use of language)
• IT skills (gathering information, use of technology for investigating-researching and transmitting)
4) Social skills
• Building positive relationships and developing cooperation with people (use of self-control, management of difficulties, and supporting peers)
• Developing socio emotional intelligence
5) Self-management skills
• Organization skills (managing time and tasks efficiently)
• States of Mind (conscious awareness, perseverance, emotion management, self-motivation)
Concept based curriculum at IBPYP
⦁ IBPYP has identified 7 key concepts as to what the learner needs to understand.
⦁ Concepts are powerful, broad and abstract arranging ideas; these ideas can be transdisciplinary or lesson based.
⦁ Concepts help build insights throughout, during and beyond classes.
⦁ Key concepts serve as a lens for conceptual insights within the transdisciplinary inquiry unit; related concepts also serve as a lens for conceptual insights for a certain subject.
Definition of key concept questions
- Form, What is it like?? The understanding that everything has a form with recognizable features that can be observed, identified, described and categorized
- Function, How does it work? The understanding that everything has a purpose, a role or a way of behaving that can be investigated
- Causation (cause and effect) Why is it like it is? The understanding that things do not just happen, that there are causal relationships at work, and that actions have consequences.
- Change, How is it changing? The understanding that change is the process of movement from one state to another. It is universal and inevitable
- Connection, How is it connected to other things? The understanding that we live in a world of interacting systems in which the actions of any individual element affect others.
- Perspective, What are the points of view? The understanding that knowledge is moderated by perspectives; different perspectives lead to different interpretations, understandings and findings; perspectives may be individual, group, cultural or disciplinary.
- Responsibility, What is our responsibility? The understanding that there are different ways of knowing, and that it is important to reflect on our conclusions, to consider our methods of reasoning, and the quality and the reliability of the evidence we have considered.
Transdisciplinary themes of IBPYP;
IBPYP offers 6 trans-disciplinary themes, which have been studied on what learners who go beyond the traditional study boundaries should know. Inquiry units are planned under these theme headings. Learners research, inquire and learn subjects relating to the transdisciplinary themes that are of global importance.
Definition of Trans-disciplinary themes
Who we are
An exploration of the nature of the self; of our beliefs and values; of personal, physical, mental, social and spiritual health; of our families.
Where we are in place and time
An exploration of our orientation in place and time; of our personal historiesİ the discoveries; explorations and migrations of humanking.
How we express ourselves
An exploration of the way which we discover and express our nature, ideas, feelings, beliefs and values through language and the arts.
How the world works
An exploration of the physical and material world; of natural and human-made phenomena; of the world of science and technology.
How we organize ourselves
An exploration of human systems and communities; the structure and function of organisations; societal decision making; economic activities and their impact.
Sharing the planet
An exploration of rights and responsibilities in the struggle to share finite resources with other people; access to equal opportunities, peace and conflict resolution.
Action – How do we want our learners to take action?
Learners take action as a response to their research-inquiry or with the drive to put positive change to life or to further their learning.
The action, which is at the center of the learner becoming an agent is integrated with the Primary Years Programme (PYP) learning process and the international mindedness acquisition that covers the whole programme.
By taking individual and collective action, learners start to understand the responsibilities of possessing international mindedness and appreciate the advantage of working with others for common purposes. When learners observe the concrete actions they can choose to make a difference they see themselves as competent, skilled and active agents of change.
The PYP action, which was started by learners, is authentic, meaningful, mindful, responsible and caring. The action is supported by the learning community. Example actions:
⦁ Change in attitude
⦁ Thought or plan towards a future action
⦁ Display of a person’s responsibility or respect to themselves, others and the environment
⦁ Commitment to leading or joining a youth advocacy group
⦁ Participation to the school decision making process or a statement of support to the local and global decision making process of the community
What is a PYP EXHIBITION?
The objective of the IB programme is to develop people who possess an international mind-set to help build a better and more peaceful world through the awareness of humanity and of the planet we share. PYP exhibition; represents an important part of the learners lives as it gives them the opportunity to synthesize and share what they have learned at PYP. During this course, learners are expected to be involved in a transdisciplinary inquiry process conducted jointly with a team and within this scope, to identify, inquire and provide solution to subjects of real life issues and problems. The presentation of the exhibition is a ceremony of celebration that enables learners to graduate from PYP. Learners take responsibility of their own research and inquiry process, in accordance with the established work calendar. All steps of study are learner-centered. Advisors and classroom teachers observe and record the process.
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