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"The Primary Years Programme (PYP) prepares students to become active, caring, lifelong learners who demonstrate respect for themselves and others and have the capacity to participate in the world around them. It focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both within and beyond the classroom. "

~ International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) 


The IB Primary Years Programme for Grade 1 to Grade 5 students offers a curriculum framework which uses essential elements of learning made up of knowledge, concepts, skills, attributes and action which is supported through the IB Learner Profile. Collegiate International School has integrated these elements into the construction of a holistic, balanced and rigorous curriculum with a three-dimensional approach to student learning. 


Collegiate International School systematically aligns the New York State Standards and the framework of the IB Primary Years Program to develop internationally-minded citizens. It is this alignment that allows our students to develop the knowledge and skills of what they learn, but also gain in-depth understanding of how to learn. This makes them ready for their transition to higher learning at CIS and beyond.  


Collegiate International School uses the six transdisciplinary-themes of the IBPYP framework to horizontally and vertically align student learning through conceptual lenses of different global issues that connect to all students. The programme uses the New York State Standards to ensure student success against an internationally recognized curriculum. Aligning these standards to the six themes of the PYP allow students to inquire into their own questions, ideas and interests in a global context. This allows students to go beyond curriculum learning standards and make connections across different subjects of learning.  


  1. Who we are 

  1. Where we are in place and time 

  1. How we express ourselves 

  1. How the world works 

  1. How we organize ourselves 

  1. Sharing the planet 


The trans-disciplinary themes of the IBPYP allow teachers at Collegiate International School to use project and problem-based learning experiences to promote student inquiry into concepts and knowledge in a real-world context. Students use research, thinking, social, communication, and self-management skills to become effective inquirers with critical thinking skills and problem-solving strategies. These inquirers are important and meaningful to students, lasting several weeks and resulting in students using new learning to improve communities for the better.  


In all Units of Inquiry, core subjects of Literacy, Math, Humanities and Science are authentically integrated through the elements of the IBPYP to support students in making connection in learning and deepening their knowledge and understanding of key concepts. Specialist subjects which include Modern Languages (Arabic, French, and Spanish), the Arts, Physical Education, and STEAM add to the integrated learning of students to further develop students learning in real-life context. The UAE Moral, Social and Cultural Studies program allows students to make further connections between what they learn and UAE culture, history, traditions and values. This integration ensures students identify purpose in their learning. When authentic connections are not able to be made in subjects, standards and concepts are taught separately through standalone lessons. All learning strives to ensure students understand the process of learning in authentic ways.  


Effective assessment is an ongoing and essential part if learning in the PYP and also at CIS. Teachers effectively use different assessment strategies and tools to support student progress. This includes assessment of learning, assessment for learning, and assessment for learning. All assessments are used to give teachers insight into student success and used to effectively support all groups of students. The culmination of this is the Grade 5 Exhibition, where students showcase their application of the elements of the PYP to identify an issue personal to them and take action to make a difference. This is presented to the CIS community in a celebration of internationally-minded learners.  




What is the IBPYP Curriculum? 

The IB Primary Years Programme (PYP) is a curriculum framework designed for students aged 3 to 12. It focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. It is defined by six Transdisciplinary themes of global significance, explored using knowledge and skills derived from six subject areas, with a powerful emphasis on inquiry-based learning. The PYP leads directly into the Middle Years Programme (MYP). It can also prepare learners for other inquiry based middle years programmes as most of the knowledge; skills and understanding that students acquire during PYP are readily transferable. 

The PYP views the development of the following skills as essential for the success of the student.  Throughout their learning students acquire and apply these skills: 

  • Social Skills  

  • Research Skills 

  • Thinking Skills  

  • Communication Skills 

  • Self-Management Skills 

The school focuses on developing a series of attributes in the students that make up the PYP Student Profile: 

  • Inquirers  

  • Knowledgeable 

  • Thinkers 

  • Communicators  

  • Caring 

  • Principled 

  • Open-Minded 

  • Risk-Takers 

  • Balanced 

  • Reflective  

The aim of Primary Years Programme is to develop internationally minded people who, recognizing their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet help to create a better and more peaceful world. 

The IBPYP Parent Pack 


"The skill-based approach to learning at Collegiate International School has allowed my son and daughter to become independent learners who know their strengths and areas of development, allowing them to consistently make progress in their learning while remaining engaged in challenging learning experiences where they are the leaders of their own learning."

- Aneela Fatima Qadri Ihsan (Parent at CIS) 

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