Learning in the Lower Primary
The Ascot Lower Primary – Nursery to Year 1
Ascot’s Lower Primary is committed to providing students with hands on and experiential learning opportunities. With a strong emphasis on learning through play and exploration, we encourage our students to have ownership over their learning opportunities. We support our students in developing a growth mindset and resilience and independence. Each class is provided with a teaching assistant and a class nanny. This low student to teacher ratio ensures that students are provided with direct support where and when needed. Our dedicated and qualified teaching team ensures that our vision, mission, values and the essential elements of the Primary Years Program (PYP) underpin all aspects of Lower Primary.
What is the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP)?
The International Baccalaureate® (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP) is a leading curriculum framework for international primary education. Designed for schools with students aged 3 to 12, the PYP focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside.
With its rigorous, research and inquiry based curriculum, the PYP transforms schools’ pedagogical practices, placing teachers, students and leaders in the core of the programme. As a result, students become active, caring, lifelong learners who demonstrate respect for themselves and others and have the capacity to participate in the world around them. PYP students are not only well prepared for the next stage of education, but also for participation in the IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) and subsequently the Diploma Programme (DP).
The PYP Curriculum Framework
These five essential elements that students need to lead successful lives underpin the PYP’s curriculum framework. Schools work with the five elements to construct a rigorous and challenging primary education curriculum that is transdisciplinary, engaging, relevant, and significant. The PYP is offered by many types of schools around the world, including state schools, private schools and international schools. As a flexible curriculum framework, the PYP is able to accommodate the demands of most national or local curriculums. With local and global issues incorporated into the PYP curriculum, students are asked to look at look at six related themes and to consider the links between them.
The themes include: ‘who we are’, ‘where we are in place and time’ and ‘how the world works’. Nurturing independent learning skills, and encouraging every student to take responsibility for their learning, the PYP develops students’ academic, social and emotional wellbeing, while simultaneously focusing on international-mindedness and the development of strong personal values.
Assessment in the PYP
Through assessment, the IB helps schools teaching the PYP to identify what students know, understand, can do and value at different stages in the teaching and learning process. In the PYP, learning is viewed as a continuous journey, where teachers identify students’ needs and use assessment data to plan the next stage of their learning. The purposes of assessment in the PYP are to:
• Promote student learning
• Provide information about student learning
• Contribute to the successful implementation of the programme.
Teachers use a wide range of assessment strategies to collect information on each of the elements represented in the written curriculum: the understanding of concepts, the acquisition of knowledge, the mastering of skills, the development of positive attitudes and the ability to take responsible action.
What are the Learner Profiles and why do we use them?
At Ascot we firmly believe that strong partnerships between home and school are crucial in your child’s well-being and development. We encourage an open door policy whereby parents can come and talk to us about any issue regarding their child’s welfare and learning
Throughout the academic year parents will be invited to presentations and workshops. These are designed to keep parents informed and to support parents with home learning. We also invite parents to celebration days and activity days. We very much want parents to be part of our community, and to have more than just a snap-shot of what their children do at school.
Transition to Upper Primary
After Year 1 in Lower Primary, your child will make the transition into Upper Primary. Children leave us confident, happy, and independent. We pride ourselves on preparing children for change and the new demands of the Primary Curriculum. Change can be daunting to some children, but we feel that Ascot pupils are fully prepared for the transition because of the shared PYP curriculum that is taught in both Lower Primary and UpperPrimary and through our parent presentations, through collaborative learning opportunities with our Year 2 classes and through the consistent and cooperative support provided by the Reception and Year 1 teaching staff. Our Year 2 pupils settle quickly and soon realize that Upper Primary is just as much fun as Lower Primary!