SUBJECT AREAS IN THE PYP
In the PYP, the subject areas of language, mathematics, science, social studies, the arts, personal, social and physical education (PSPE) are acknowledged as important components of the curriculum. However, it is also recognized that when students acquire skills in these subject areas, students are able to make deep connections across the different disciplines and relate it to what they learn in life. In the programme of inquiry, science and/or social studies takes place within the units of inquiry. Whenever there is an authentic connection to the students' learning and understanding of the transdisciplinary theme, other subject areas of language, mathematics, the arts and PSPE are included at each year level.
inquiry through language
Language is fundamental to learning, thinking and communicating. Language is developed across the whole curriculum and as a result all teachers are language teachers, who model and teach the use of language. Learning takes place in authentic contexts, and literature plays a special role in enabling this to happen.
Structured, purposeful inquiry is the main approach to teaching and learning language in the PYP. The PYP represents an approach to teaching that is broad and inclusive in that it provides a context within which a wide variety of teaching strategies and styles can be accommodated, provided that they are driven by a spirit of inquiry and a clear sense of purpose.
The PYP has identified three strands--oral language, visual language, written language—that are learned across and throughout the curriculum, with each strand being an integral component of language learning. Students learn language, about a language and through language (e.g. language of mathematics, Fijian language, Hindi language etc.)
inquiry through mathematics
It is important that learners acquire mathematical understanding by constructing their own meaning through ever-increasing levels of abstraction, starting with exploring their own personal experiences, understandings and knowledge. Additionally, it is fundamental to the philosophy of the PYP that, since it is to be used in real-life situations, mathematics needs to be taught in relevant, realistic contexts, rather than by attempting to impart a fixed body of knowledge directly to students. How children learn mathematics can be described using the following stages.
Structured, purposeful inquiry is the main approach to teaching and learning mathematics in the PYP. The PYP represents an approach to teaching that is broad and inclusive in that it provides a context within which a wide variety of teaching strategies and styles can be accommodated, provided that they are driven by a spirit of inquiry and a clear sense of purpose. Mathematical strands include number, pattern and function, shape and space, measurement and data handling.
inquiry through the arts
Arts are integral to the PYP and they are identified as dance, drama, music and visual arts. Arts as seen as a powerful way of communication where students explore and construct a sense of self and develop an understanding of the world around them through the interconnected strands of responding and creating. Learning about arts and through arts is essential to the development of the whole child as students have opportunities to acquire specific arts' skills, demonstrate creativity, engage the imagination, convey conceptual understanding and reflect on aesthetic experiences.
Whenever appropriate and possible, the arts are taught through the units of inquiry and support students' inquiries. Additionally, primary classes from Early Childhood to Year 5 partake in visual arts and music/singing lessons weekly. Visual arts lessons expose students to things such as the elements of art (texture, colour etc.) and exploration of the different forms of art and reflection on artists' work during different eras. Music lessons involve singing (in tune and rounds), listening, playing (guitar, recorder), moving, creating and performing.
inquiry through pspe
The development of a student's well being can be addressed throughout all areas of the curriculum and it is intrinsically linked to all aspects of a student's experience at school and beyond. The development of our overall well being is defined through the three conceptually driven PSPE strands of identity, active living and interactions. Physical education in the PYP is more than students' participation in sports and games. Its role is to develop a combination of transferable skills promoting physical, intellectual, emotional and social development. It encourages the students to make informed choices that contribute to long-term healthy living and to understand the cultural significance of physical activities.
All students are actively involved in Physical Education lessons and a sports programme which concentrates on games, ball skills, swimming and athletics. Early childhood students are actively involved in a perceptual motor programme.
inquiry through our additional languages
Fijian and Hindi Studies, the host country languages of Fiji are offered to students in Early Childhood through to Year 5. The language programme introduces students to basic Hindi and Fijian language and culture/customs. It also allows for transdisciplinary learning across all year levels in nominated units of inquiry.
inquiry through ict
ICT in the PYP encompasses the use of a wide range of digital tools, media and learning environments for teaching, learning and assessing. In the PYP, there will be opportunities to use ICT in the relevant, authentic context of the units of inquiry, as well as through teaching and learning experiences in other areas of the curriculum.
Students from Early Childhood to Year 5 are also exposed to computer skills in weekly lessons.
Each classroom is equipped with an interactive whiteboard and iPad and XO laptop implementation will continue in 2014.
inquiry through social studies/science
In the PYP, science is viewed as the exploration of the behaviors of, and the interrelationships among, the natural, physical and material worlds. Science in the curriculum encourages curiosity, develops an understanding of the world and enables students to develop a sense of responsibility regarding the impact of their actions on themselves, others and the world.
Our aim is to develop scientific concepts and knowledge through hypothesizing, making accurate observations and thinking critically about findings within units of inquiry. Science strands include living things, earth and space, materials and matter, forces and energy.
Social studies is viewed as the study of people in relation to their past, their present and their future, their environment and their society. The social studies curriculum encourages curiosity and develops an understanding of a rapidly changing world. Students develop an understanding of their personal and cultural identities through social studies, as well as the skills and knowledge needed to participate actively in their classroom, their school, their community and the world: to understand themselves in relation to their community.