PYP Curriculum Corner: 18/10/2019

Welcome to the 1st PYP Curriculum Corner of the year!

The IB have been working hard to review the PYP over the last 5 years with the aim of ensuring it is “fit for purpose” and truly prepares students for the ever changing world ahead.  They have released the Enhanced PYP which I have been introducing to you through Curriculum Corners last year and in parent workshops.

The IB have now completed the review and released the Enhanced PYP.  The programme remains essentially the same however with some enhancements.  These enhancements aim to improve the quality of teaching and learning in PYP schools across the world.  I have outlined each enhancement below and what this might look like at ISC.

Enhancement… At ISC…
An improved PYP Planner for teachers to record the journey of the unit This enhancement impacts the teachers and all teachers are using the new planning format.
7 Key Concepts rather than 8.  Reflection is embedded in the programme rather than being a key concept We made this change last year and are working with your children on different ways to reflect on their learning.
Transdisciplinary Skills are now called Approaches to Learning to align with the MYP and DP.  Each skill is explained for Early Years and Elementary Teachers are researching the skills required and thinking about the journey from PYP into MYP.  Your children will start to use the Approaches to Learning vocabulary more often and will reflect on their development of each skill.
There is now a much clearer definition of ACTION – it is defined as 5 demonstrations:  participation, social justice, social entrepreneurship, lifestyle choices and advocacy We researched these demonstrations last year and have included them in planning.  What is important to note is that action may be driven by the teacher it does not only have to be a student idea.  Children may also choose to take “no action” but will learn how to justify this choice along their PYP journey.
Agency is at the heart of the PYP.  It has always been in the PYP but it is now the core of what we do.  Giving Voice, Choice & Ownership to all members of the ISC Community means everyone becomes part of the learning community.  Students will have more say on their unit of inquiry work and be encouraged to use their “inner agency” to make positive changes on a local – global level We will be helping your children to use agency in positive ways, to carefully consider how their voice can make a positive difference and how they have the power to take ownership of their learning.  We hope all children will feel they have the right to express themselves and to truly become agents of change with the school, local and global community.
The PYP Attitudes are now embedded in the Learner Profile We had already made this change and use the PYP attitudes to explain the meanings of the IB Learner Profile.
Play is now defined and explained more clearly.  Play does not stop at the Early Years and goes right through to the DP! We have been working closely with Marianne Valentine on the Inspired Early Years Approach and also had 3 days PD with Dr. Jo Fahey so we are aware of different types of play which are incorporated across the PYP.
Assessment is now more focused on monitoring students and documenting observations rather than final summative tasks.  The PYP assesses the process and the product and therefore there will be a shift in thinking about Assessment.  Your children will become Self-Adjusters of their work making changes and responding actively to feedback.  We will also work on the format of feeding back to feed forward. We will be rewriting parts of our Assessment Policy and will focus more on the learning journey rather than a final product at the end of units.  Your children will have stronger agency to respond to feedback and will develop resilience to work with others to improve their work.
Early Learning.  The IB have now published the Early Learner document which focuses on how the PYP should be approached with our youngest learners.  It includes separate Approaches to Learning sub-skills and Assessment strategies which are more suitable for younger students. We will be using Staff Meetings to ensure all teachers are up to date with the Early Learner Document.  We are already implementing a lot of the document through the Inspired Early Years Approach and will ensure all aspects of the Early Learner are in place by December 2019.

The Enhancements are very exciting and already all PYP teachers have had IB Training on the Enhanced PYP.  The new Programme Model which summarises the PYP can be found below.

Image result for enhanced pyp programme model

I hope to see you at a Parent Workshop where we will explore aspects of the PYP in more detail.