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CONFUSED!!! ESF PYP system. Any opinions appreciated!

  1. #1
    cinnamon is offline Registered User
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    CONFUSED!!! ESF PYP system. Any opinions appreciated!

    Hello,
    Is there anyone out there who knows much about the ESF PYP education system and has an opinion about it?
    My daughter will be going into P1 next year and I have heard so much conflicting information I am so confused!
    If you have personal experience , or are in the education field , work(ed) in any of these schools and have an opinion I would really love to hear what you have to say.

    We will be applying for Bradbury, DC and Rennaisance.

    firstly: What is your opinion of the PYP programme?
    I understand the philosphy behind the IB programme but how does this work for such young children?

    How much emphasis is put on learning the basics; mathematics ,reading ,writing etc.
    I can understand wanting to encourage children to inquire and question..but is the emphasis on this and not enough on the basics?

    I have heard from one sup teacher that worked in DC earlier this yr that she was shocked to find that there was no maths programme, as far as she could see (has it changed since?) and that the maths ability of some of the kids was far below the standard expected for their age.
    She also questioned their reading programme too.
    Was she correct? Was it just this class? This school?

    Do other esf schools on the PYP have different reading and maths programmes incoporated into the PYP system?
    Any other info would be greatly appreciated

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    canadianinhk is offline Registered User
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    I work at a PYP school and we most definitely have a Math curriculum that we are responsible for integrating into inquiry time or teaching as stand alone subjects. I have friends working at ESF and they also have a Math curriculum that they follow.

    If you are concerned I would talk to each school about their Math program. Ask how it is taught and assessed. If the woman you spoke to only taught for a few days in the school she would not necessarily have the whole picture of the school and what happens in it. Def talk to the schools. As to the standards most kids are at...what is she basing her information on? What standard etc.

  3. #3
    cinnamon is offline Registered User
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    Hi CanadianinHK. Thanks for your reply!
    Like most parents , I am getting an education in education as I try to navigate the school system here. So I hope that my questions make sense.
    If you have the time I do have a lot more questions. I would greatly value your opinion as an educator in the PYP programme.
    I have spoken briefly to one of the primary principles about the programme but I realise that she is 100% on board with the programme.
    Could you give a different view/ your experience about how much better/ worse (for want of a better word) the programme is?
    I presume you have worked inside and outside of the programme, what do you see as the strengths and weaknesses of a traditional type of programme and the PYP?
    Have you seen a vast difference in the children in the PYP programme and those in traditional teaching?
    I think I understand the philosophy of the programme, but in practise, especially at this young age, do you feel that there is enough teaching/learning of the basics? Is this important to the PYP way of learning?
    Is it true that the schools under the PYP programme have the freedom to choose the kind of programmes (maths reading music etc) that they teach with the PYP programme? or does PYP have its own specific programmes?

    In other words could it be that each PYP school teaches math in a different way with different emphasis?
    How truely individual is the teaching with in each class?
    Is there a lot of support for individual weaknesses as well as strength within the PYP system or would this depend on the school?

    I know that that is a lot of questions! And I will definately be speaking to each school as well. But if you could shed some light on any of that it would be very helpful.
    Thank you!

  4. #4
    HappyV is offline Registered User
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    http://www.ibo.org/pyp/

    The answers to all your questions are here. The IB will not grant a school accreditation for the PYP unless things like maths/literacy skills are well taken care of. The process to get accreditation is quite stringent.

    Having said that, I have heard very questionable things about the program at DC - if I was looking at that school, I wouldn't hesitate to ask the hard questions.

  5. #5
    canadianinhk is offline Registered User
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    I'm not sure I can offer you another opinion. I believe in the philosophy behind the PYP programme. I think what you will find is that it depends on the school and the teacher as to how well the programme is run, if the Math and English is taught well etc but the same can be said for any programme. I think you have to look at the philosophy of the programme and see if you believe in it like it and believe you will be happy with your child in this type of programme. Ask the questions about curriculum, how things are assessed, how is your child's progress reported to you and how often and get a feel for the school. Do you like what is happening in the classes when you go for a tour. Do you like how your questions are answered. In the end it is going to come down to what you are comfortable with.

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