On January 6th, 2014 we officially became an authorized IB school nr 005004.
The decision to adopt the IB Primary Years Programme at our school was driven by a recognition that it encompasses many of the principles we have long held dear and sought to encourage: a positive attitude to learning and the acquisition of new skills, while developing children’s abilities to ask questions and seek satisfying answers. Likewise, both the International Baccalaureate Organization and our school seek to promote the values of mutual respect, tolerance and understanding toward individuals, groups and cultures in all communities. We deliver the PYP Programme for 3-, 4-, 5- and 6-year-olds in English. We teach Mathematics, Science, Language Arts, Social Studies, French, Music, Rhythmics, Art, Coding, Chess and Physical Education through a play-based approach to inquiry.
In order to give our students a broader choice for their future educational path, in the oldest groups we implement the official Polish Ministry of Education curriculum. Daily Polish lessons prepare our students for their School Readiness Diagnosis (MEN registration number – 398PN).
Additionally, to develop students’ interests and hobbies we offer a wide range of extra-curricular activities including Karate, Ballet, Dance, Pottery, Piano, Chess, Drama, French Atelier, Soccer Club, Speech Therapy, Corrective Gymnastics, Acrobatics, Tennis, and Swimming, taking advantage of our unique 580 m2 premises, including a large, fully equipped gym, library, art room and soccer field.
Our Preschool is unique for many reasons. We employ highly qualified teaching specialists and also provide support from a professional nurse, psychologist, speech therapist, and security guard. We understand children’s needs and their natural drive to explore the world around. Therefore, we encourage students to develop their interests by providing them with authentic experiences. Our program of study – Primary Years Programme by the IB is tailored to meet the needs of children aged 3-12, in order to raise global citizens of the world, fully prepared to face all the challenges of the modern world. The whole philosophy and methodology of the IB programme encourages international mindedness and the development of the learner profile attributes:
Inquirers: We help our students develop a deeper understanding of the world by organizing our curriculum into transdisciplinary, concept-based units that incorporate all areas of a child’s development. Units start with provocations to prompt students’ questions and ignite their logical and critical thinking skills. Brainstorming, group discussions, presentations, experiments and projects are the key teaching tools which will remain useful and widely practiced throughout their lives.
Balanced: We believe that body and mind should be developed simultaneously; healthy lifestyle plays an important role in a successful learning process. Our preschool nurse is a qualified dietician. We recognize the importance of all elements of our preschool routine. During the course of the day we give children the opportunity to inquire, learn, play, interact and take advantage of our beautiful garden and two lovely nearby parks (Jordan’s Garden and Dreszer’s Park). We acknowledge that happy and positive children learn better and faster. That is why we introduce the ‘mindfulness’ concept because of its worldwide recognized benefits.
Communicators: Although our language of instruction is English, we understand the importance of multilingual education, and therefore we teach French and Polish as well, in order to provide our students with a wider variety of communication tools. Their skills can be regularly exercised in authentic, practical situations: field trips, discussions with guest speakers, interviewing community workers etc. Our preschoolers recognize the value of asking relevant questions and formulating their own opinions. Students also explore and develop appreciation for non-verbal communication and are encouraged to express their feelings and ideas through means such as Music, Visual Arts, Drama or Dance.
Knowledgeable: Through a transdisciplinary approach, our students become able to construct their own understanding of global concepts, equipped with all the necessary academic skills: Math (number, data handling, pattern, shape and space), Language (speaking, listening, reading and writing), and develop an appreciation of both local and global issues. Individual learning styles and preferences are always taken into consideration and learning is supported by access to our facilities such as the garden, our Preschool library which contains nearly 2500 books, classroom computers, an interactive board, and the local public multimedia library.
Open-minded: Due to the multinational and multicultural nature of our School community, our students have the unique opportunity to naturally develop a deep appreciation for the diversity of cultures, customs, traditions and celebrations. It allows them to build a thorough understanding of perspectives and view differences and variations as positive, instead of threatening. Through exposure to a wide variety of international experiences our students have the privilege of co-existing within a community founded on mutual respect and understanding.
Thinkers: As a concept-based curriculum, our programme encourages students to ask questions and find their own answers, as well as make connections between factual knowledge and traditional academic skills such as computation, data handling, reading and writing. With the inquiry cycle at the core of the learning process children have the chance to constantly challenge and improve their logical thinking skills and develop an understanding of the world around them. A growth mindset is also strongly promoted, as creating a stable foundation for forming life-long learners is one of our main goals.
Caring: Our students develop personally and emotionally in a harmonious way. Rather than competition, we concentrate on sharing, being helpful and friendly towards classmates and the community. This way, our students grow in a family-like atmosphere where everyone feels important. Tolerance and empathy are crucial while co-existing with others. Our students are also aware of the importance of issues such as ecology or recycling. They know the importance of the individual in the process of caring for our planet.
Reflective: Reflection plays an important role in the learning process. Our students perform self-reflections and self-assessments and are encouraged to correct and learn from their own mistakes. Students who are able to describe their own emotions are more likely to identify their strengths and weaknesses. Parents take an active part in their child’s assessment process by attending student-led conferences 2-3 times per year. Additionally, parents are kept informed about their child’s academic progress and school readiness with information shared from the School Readiness Diagnosis that is offered for five and six-year-olds.
Risk-takers: By exposing children to different type of activities and surroundings, we teach them how to accept change with ease and adapt to new situations. We encourage students not to be afraid of making mistakes and we challenge them to try new things. At the end of each school year, our students perform on a professional theatre stage at ‘Kamienica Theatre’ where they overcome their initial shyness and flourish to develop as communicators: singing, acting, dancing, interacting, and cooperating.
Principled: Our teachers provide an example of good behaviour, promoting good manners. Our students learn to follow rules and respect one another by participating in the process of creating a shared classroom “essential agreement” that guides behaviour at school. Practicing caring and respectful behaviour every day at school has a positive impact on children’s behaviour outside of school, including during school field trips to places such as the philharmonic, museums and the local library.