Kate Sessions Elementary


 

IB logo     Sessions Elementary

     International Baccalaureate School

 

Dear Parents/Guardians and Community members,

 

As staff at an authorized International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme school (IB-PYP), we are often asked to describe the program to parents/guardians and community members. However, unless someone has attended rigorous training it can be difficult to understand the program as a whole because it is comprised of so many different components. Following is an attempt to better educate parents/guardians and community members about our program. Pages one and two give an overall framework, and Page three is a table showing a synopsis of the Programme.

 

First of all, let’s visit the IBO (International Baccalaureate Organization) and Kate Sessions Mission Statements:

 

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 programmes of international education and rigorous assessment.

These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.

 

Kate Sessions Elementary School’s mission is to provide an international, trans-disciplinary program designed to foster the development of a well-balanced student.  The Kate Sessions school community will work together to provide our students with a challenging and engaging learning environment that supports purposeful inquiry and builds positive attitudes towards learning.

 

The IB-PYP focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside.  It is a philosophy of teaching which emphasizes the inquiry method, a series of thoughtful and creative actions through which meaningful understandings are built over time. These new understandings are built on prior experience and knowledge.

 

The Programme:

·         Encourages international-mindedness in IB students;

·         Encourages a positive attitude to learning by engaging students in inquiries and developing their awareness of the process of leaning so that they become lifelong learners;

·         Reflects real life by encouraging learning beyond traditional subjects with meaningful, in-depth inquiries into real issues;

·         Emphasizes, through the Learner Profile, the development of the whole student physically, intellectually, emotionally and ethically.

 

In the PYP a balance is sought between acquisition of essential knowledge and skills, development of conceptual understanding, demonstration of positive attitudes, and taking of responsible action.

 

The five Essential Elements:

Knowledge: significant, relevant content that we wish the students to explore and know about, taking into consideration their prior experience and understanding;

Concepts: powerful ideas that have relevance within the subject areas but also transcend them and that students must explore and re-explore in order to develop a coherent, in-depth understanding;

Skills:  those capabilities that the students need to demonstrate to succeed in a changing, challenging world, which may be disciplinary or transdisciplinary in nature.

Attitudes: dispositions that are expressions of fundamental value, beliefs and feelings about learning, the environment and people;

Action: Demonstrations of deeper learning in responsible behavior through responsible action; a manifestation in practice of the other essential elements.

 

The PYP emphasizes the development of the whole child by including a Learner Profile supported by Student Attitudes as part of the educational philosophy.  The Learner Profile and Student Attitudes are promoted and modeled by the entire school community.

 

In the PYP, it is believed that education must extend beyond the intellectual to include not only socially responsible attitudes but also thoughtful and appropriate action.  An explicit expectation of the PYP is that successful inquiry will lead to responsible action, initiated by the student as a result of the learning process. This action will extend the students learning, or it may have a wider social impact.

 

The program is concept driven and promotes genuine understanding which challenges students to engage in the study of global concepts.  The PYP is developed around six organizing transdisciplinary themes which provide the structure for the Program of Inquiry. These themes identify areas of shared experience that have meaning for individuals of different cultures.  They promote an awareness of the human condition and an understanding that there is a commonality of human experience.  As students explore these themes collaboratively, they increase their awareness of and sensitivity to others.  This is crucial to the development of an international perspective.

 

The six Transdisciplinary Themes:

Who we are:  an inquiry into the nature of the self; beliefs and values; personal, physical, mental, social and spiritual health; human relationships including family friends, communities, and cultures; rights and responsibilities; what it meant to be human.

Where we are in place and time: and inquiry into orientation in place and time; personal histories; homes and journeys; the discoveries, explorations and migrations of human kind; the relationships between and the interconnectedness of individuals and civilization, form local and global perspectives.

How we express ourselves: an inquiry into 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.

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.

How we organize ourselves:  and 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.

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.

 

 

Kate Sessions Elementary School

Program of Inquiry (Updated June 2012)

Grade

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.

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 to global perspectives.

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.

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.

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.

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.

5

 

Central Idea: The body systems work together to maintain a healthy person

Concepts: Causation, Connection, Function,

Lines of Inquiry:

·       How the human body works

·       Interdependence of the body systems

Central Idea: People move for a variety of reasons

Concepts:  Causation, Perspective, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Explorers and their effects on the world

·       Impact of exploration and natural resources on indigenous people

·       The political, religious, social and economic institutions that influenced colonization

 

Central Idea: Humans use print, sound, and visual media to express their personal views

Concepts: Causation, Change,

Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Study of documents and techniques such as essays, editorials, debates, political cartoons and book reviews to express a point of view, beliefs, and values

·       Inquiry into poetry

·       How groups use persuasion to cause change

 

Central Idea: Humans investigate the world of science (inquiry) by asking meaningful questions and conducting investigations to make sense of the world

Concepts: Form, Function, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       The properties of matter and how elements are classified

·       The scientific process

       

Central Idea: People develop systems that dictate how they govern themselves

Concepts: Causation, Perspective, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Types of organized governments

·       Causes of revolution in the United States and around the world

 

Central Idea: Water affects life on Earth

Concepts: Causation, Change, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·     Water cycle: how it impacts our weather patterns

·     Water conservation

·     An inquiry into water sources and it’s distribution on Earth

 

4

Central Idea: Informed consumers evaluate information

Concepts: Perspective, Reflection, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Understanding your responsibility by being an informed consumer

·       The effects of persuasive advertising

Central Idea: Diversity in a population is a result of physical, economic, social, and political features

Concepts: Change, Causation, Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Types of changes that occur in a region as a result of immigration and migration

·       Diversity

·       Why perspectives differ

Central Idea: Individuals communicate the meaning of the world and humanity through various forms of traditional literature

Concepts: Causation, Form,  Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Authors express nature, culture, beliefs and values using different forms of folk literature

·       How art plays a role in reflecting important events (eg. Photography, architecture, film)

 

Central Idea: The world around us is influenced by Earth’s physical processes and the application of science and technology

Concepts: Change, Connection,  Function

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Relationship between rocks and minerals including the properties and methods of rock formation

·       Processes that affect the Earth’s natural environment

·       The impact and application of electricity in society

·       Properties and behaviors of magnets and their uses in electrical and non-electrical devices

Central Idea: Economic changes affect who we are, where we live and how we are governed

Concepts: Connection, Function,  Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Economic life of a society

·       Political life of a society

Central Idea: All living organisms are interdependent on their environment

Concepts: Causation, Connection, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Survival of the fittest

·       Ecosystems can be characterized by their living and non-living components

 

3

Central Idea: Who I am is based on what happens to me and how I deal with it

Concepts: Change, Causation,  Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Archetypical characters 

·       Humans develop strong beliefs and attitudes

·       Qualities of character

 

 

Central Idea: Our lives are influenced by people and events that came before us

Concepts: Change, Connection, Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·     Indigenous people

·    Compare/contrast the lives of native people to our lives today

 

Central Idea: Authors use recurring plots to bring stories to life

Concepts: Form, Function, Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Using story arcs to understand how stories are constructed

·       Universal themes

·       How people interpret literature

 

Central Idea: Predictable patterns help us explore objects in the sky and their connection to our life on Earth

Concepts:  Causation, Change, Connection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       The position and movement of the Earth, Sun, Moon, and stars

·       What causes the Moon’s appearance to change

·       Identify key constellations and when they are visible during the year

 

Central Idea: People create government systems to help communities function

Concepts:  Form,  Function, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Functions of government

·       Why we need government and laws

·       Our role as citizens in government

 

Central Idea: People take risks to ensure equal opportunities

Concepts: Perspective,  Reflection, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Equal rights and opportunities

·       People who took risks to secure freedoms

 


 

 

Who We Are

Where We Are In Place And Time

 

 

How We Express Ourselves

How The World Works

How We Organize Ourselves

Sharing The Planet

2

Central Idea: Our past makes us who we are

Concepts: Change, Perspective, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Daily life is different/same depending on time in history

·       Family trees/family histories

·       The role ancestors play in character development

 

Central Idea: The food we consume is influenced by various factors

Concepts: Causation, Function, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       How food gets to the table

·       Food production and consumption

·       Role and interdependence of buyers and sellers

·       Limits on resources affect production and consumption

 

  Central Idea: Throughout time people express ideas and feelings through fictional characters and poetry

Concepts: Connection, Perspective,

Reflection

 Lines of Inquiry:

·       How literature expresses humanities’ fears and feelings

·       Literature reflects a society’s beliefs

 

Central Idea: No matter where you are in the world, objects move for a variety of reasons

Concepts: Causation, Form,

Function

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Motion of objects (push/pull, force, gravity, magnetic, vibration)

·       Observing, measuring and locating objects in relation to other objects

 

Central Idea: Land has different forms and uses that affect people and environments

Concepts: Causation, Change, Form

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Landforms influence how and where we live

·       Land use

 

Central Idea: Heroes inspire us to be peaceful world citizens

Concepts: Causation, Function, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·      Different types of heroes around the world

·      Characters in fiction and poetry who are heroic

·      Situations that create heroism

 

1

Central Idea: Choices and behaviors can affect our safety

Concepts:  Causation, Function, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Humans learn safe behavior

·       Behaviors that prevent disease and speed the recovery from illness

 

Central Idea: The way people live and work around the world and how things change over time.

Concepts: Form, Function, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Cultural geography-a study of everyday life of people around the world and a comparison between lifestyles from long ago and today

·       Physical geography—a study of maps and how they inform us

·       How people use money to buy goods and services

 Central Idea: Cultures around the world express themselves through traditions and stories

Concepts: Connection, Perspective, Change

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Customs, ceremonies, traditions and social practices of varied cultures

·       The study of fiction

Central Idea: Changes in weather affect ourselves and the world

Concepts: Causation, Form, Function

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Weather conditions

·       Meteorologists use weather tools to make predictions

·       Scientists know how to ask questions and conduct investigations

Central Idea: People use rules to organize their communities

Concepts: Causation, Function, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Establishing rules in a community

·       Consequences of following, or not following rules

Central Idea: Plants and animals share the environment

Concepts: Change, Connection,

Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       The responsibilities humans  have towards  plants and animals

·       The conditions plants and animals need to stay healthy

·       The function of plants and how they change as they grow

 

K

Central Idea: Families have structures and responsibilities that play a role in our health

Concepts: Connection, Function

Responsibility

 Lines of Inquiry:

·       Family structures

·       Roles and responsibilities of family members

·       Healthy practices

Central Idea: We learn about the past through historical figures, events, and places

Concepts: Causation, Connection,

Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       People can learn from stories about the past

·       Lifestyles of people and places has changed over time

 

Central Idea: Around the world people tell stories in many different ways

Concepts: Form, Perspective, Reflection

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Ideas are communicated through written and oral language

·       We explore literature in a variety of ways

 

Central Idea: We are surrounded by natural resources that make the world work

Concepts: Causation, Form, Change

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Types of natural resources

·       The transformation of natural resources

·       Relationship between humans and natural resources

Central Idea: People have roles and responsibilities within a community

Concepts: Connection, Function, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Roles in communities

·       Responsible citizenship

 

Central Idea: All living things have unique characteristics that affect our world

Concepts: Connection, Form, Function

Lines of Inquiry:

·       The structure of plants

·       The physical characteristics and behaviors of animals

 

Pre

K

Central Idea: As human beings we experience the world through our senses

Concepts: Form, Function, Connection

 Lines of Inquiry:

·       Study of the five senses

·       Our body moves in various ways

·       Our feelings

 

Central Idea: Kids around the world have customs and traditions

Concepts: Change, Connection, Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Cultures on each continent (geography, location, facts)

·       Customs (food, dress for a reason, language, lifestyle, games)

·       Kids around the world celebrate

 

Central Idea: People share their ideas through art and dramatic play

Concepts: Form, Connection, Perspective

Lines of Inquiry:

·       We express ourselves

·       Art (picture to match other units such as landscapes, self-portraits)

·       Dramatic play (bringing the stories to life)

 

Central Idea: People have daily habits and use time to help guide their day

Concepts: Form, Function, Change

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Cycles of the day (night vs day)

·       Time (daily activities, clock, am. vs pm.)

·       Daily habits/patterns

 

Central Idea: People get from place to place using transportation systems safely

Concepts: Form, Function, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       Types of transportation

·       Reasons to transport people

·       Transportation safety

 

Central Idea: Our world consists of living and nonliving things

Concepts: Form, Function, Responsibility

Lines of Inquiry:

·       What’s living versus nonliving

·       Living things have needs

·       Our responsibility to living things