The International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program and Victory World Christian School
The purpose of the information provided below is to provide you with a brief idea as to why VWCS is investigating the possibility of becoming an IB World School. To help explain this process, much of the information provided constitutes a general overview of what the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program (IB PYP) offers students.
The International Baccalaureate Overview
The IB provides a challenging educational framework to schools who desire to be part of a learning community that is internationally minded. IB students not only embrace their own cultures, but are also open and responsive to other cultures and people. VWCS, is home to students who are themselves, or their family members, are from more than 20 different countries, making our school an internationally diverse student body with a very rich cultural diversity. With VWCS’s international mindedness and IB’s focus on international education, there seems to exist a commonality of Victory’s goals and objectives and the IB educational framework. For example, our respective mission statements:
The International Baccalaureate Mission Statement
The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end the organization works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programs of international education and rigorous assessment. These programs encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.
Victory World Christian School Mission Statement
Victory World Christian School is a multi-cultural community of learners committed to Christian discipleship, academic excellence, and world transformation. VWCS will provide a rigorous academic and discipleship program that emphasizes practical application; develop partnerships which mobilize church and community human and capital resources to optimize learning for everyone; create a caring and safe environment that stimulates and facilitates learning.
What is the IB?
There are over 4,200 IB World Schools around the world, served by more than 7,500 IB teachers that in turn serves more than 1.2 million students. IB students take an active part in, and contribute to, their school, their local community, and the international community. While about half of the IB World Schools are private schools, the other half of the IB World Schools are considered to be public schools. IB has become an important influence in public education policy that has helped to raise educational standards throughout the world. It is this “raising of the educational standards” that we at VWCS seek to make part of our wonderful school.
The International Baccalaureate organization has constructed an educational framework that purposefully guides students to become lifelong learners.
The Primary Years Program – PYP
IB has four distinct and challenging programs: the Primary Years Program for students 3-12 years of age, the Middle School Program for students aged 11-16, the IB Diploma Program for students 16-19, and the IB Career-related Program for students 16-19 years of age too. Victory World Christian School is evaluating the IB Primary Years Program for our school. The IB PYP focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the outside world. The International Baccalaureate organization has constructed an educational framework that purposefully guides students to become lifelong learners. The Primary Years Program, attempts to do this through an emphasis on many attributes of a life-long learner. These attributes, in IB terminology, is known as the IB Learner Profile.The Primary Years Program, the IB’s program for elementary students, attempts to do this through an emphasis on many attributes of a life-long learner. These attributes, in IB terminology, is known as the IB Learner Profile.
IB Learning through Inquiry
The process of inquiry is at the foundation to the PYP’s approach to teaching and learning. By allowing students to inquire in their learning, they become responsible for and actively involved in, their own learning. The process of inquiry provides each student the opportunity to develop a fuller understanding of the world in a manner and pace that is unique to each student’s needs.
Beginning with the knowledge that students learn best when their learning is connected to prior knowledge or experience, PYP seeks to support students’ efforts to construct new meaning and understanding from the world around them. The inquiry process draws on their prior knowledge, provides for new experiences through exciting learning opportunities, and allow students the time and opportunity for meaningful reflection. With this perspective in mind, the IB PYP integrates a range of learning experiences that includes an awareness of the diverse nature of the students’ prior knowledge and experience.
In short, inquiry is the process of learning, initiated by the students or teacher, which guides the students from their current level of understanding or knowledge to a new, deeper, and more meaningful level of understanding.
IB Learner Profile
The Primary Years Program, the IB’s program for elementary students, attempts to do this through an emphasis on many attributes of a life-long learner. These attributes, in IB terminology, is known as the IB Learner Profile. The profile describes students who are:
Students develop their natural curiosity. They acquire the skills necessary to conduct inquiry and research and show independence in learning. They actively enjoy learning and this love of learning will be sustained throughout their lives.
Students show empathy, compassion and respect towards the needs and feelings of others. They have a personal commitment to service, and act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment.
IB students tell us they bring this commitment to community and others to their activities and leadership roles at university and carry it throughout their lives.
Students understand and express ideas and information confidently and creatively in more than one language and in a variety of modes of communication. They work effectively and willingly in collaboration with others.
IB students regularly deliver stimulating presentations and drive excellence in group assignments.
Students act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness, justice and respect for the dignity of the individual, groups and communities. They take responsibility for their own actions and the consequences that accompany them.
IB students are infused with the academic integrity.
Students approach unfamiliar situations and uncertainty with courage and forethought, and have the independence of spirit to explore new roles, ideas and strategies. They are brave and articulate in defending their beliefs.
IB students transition well to challenging university settings and show resilience and determination in their work. In academics, they have the confidence to approach new or unfamiliar subjects or material.
Students explore concepts, ideas and issues that have local and global significance. In so doing, they acquire in-depth knowledge and develop understanding across a broad and balanced range of disciplines.
Students exercise initiative in applying thinking skills critically and creatively to recognize and approach complex problems, and make reasoned, ethical decisions.
IB students contribute to discussions in a meaningful way. They do not shy away from challenging questions and, once they know the answer, follow up by asking “why?”
Students understand and appreciate their own cultures and personal histories, and are open to the perspectives, values and traditions of other individuals and communities. They are accustomed to seeking and evaluating a range of points of view, and are willing to grow from the experience.
IB students have a deep understanding of various cultures and views, bringing an appreciation of new views to both their academic study and their involvement in local and wider communities.
Students understand the importance of intellectual, physical and emotional balance to achieve personal well-being for themselves and others.
IB students are active participants in a wide range of aspects of extracurricular opportunities, as well as focusing on their academic development.
Students give thoughtful consideration to their own learning and experience. They are able to assess and understand their strengths and limitations in order to support their learning and personal development.
IB students have developed an ability to reflect on their learning and to articulate how they learned. They have learned that critical reflection is an important academic and life skill.
As Victory World Christian School considers the IB Primary Years Program, feel free to stop by the school or take a look at the information on the right to see where we are in the process of exploring the IB Primary Years Program for use at VWCS.
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