Curriculum framework

The Primary Years Programme (PYP) offers a transdisciplinary, inquiry-based and student-centered education with responsible action at its core, enabling students to learn between, across and beyond traditional subject boundaries.

The framework serves as the curriculum organizer and offers an in-depth guide to achieve authentic conceptual inquiry-based learning that is engaging, significant, challenging and relevant for PYP students.

Through the programme of inquiry and by reflecting on their learning, PYP students develop knowledge, conceptual understandings, skills and the attributes of the IB Learner profile. Informed by constructivist and social-constructivist learning theories, the emphasis on collaborative inquiry and integrative learning honours the curiosity, voice, and contribution of the students,

The pillars of the PYP curriculum framework

The transdisciplinary model extends across all three pillars of the PYP curriculum framework—the learner, learning and teaching, and the learning community.

  • The learner: describes the outcomes for individual students and the outcomes they seek for themselves (what is learning?)
  • Learning and teaching: articulates the distinctive features of learning and teaching (how best to support learners?)
  • The learning community: emphasizes the importance of the social outcomes of learning and the role that IB communities play in achieving these outcomes (who facilitates learning and teaching?)

VIDEO: Glenn Davis, PYP Principal and Coordinator describes the process moving away from a textbook-based curriculum to an open-ended learning experience

Agency, self-efficacy and action

Agency and self-efficacy are fundamental to learning in the PYP. Throughout the programme, the learner is an agent for their own and others' learning. They direct their learning with a strong sense of identity and self-belief, and in conjunction with others, build a sense of community and awareness for the opinions, values and needs of others.

Action, the core of student agency, is integral to the PYP learning process and to the programme’s overarching outcome of international mindedness. Through taking individual and collective action, students come to understand the responsibilities associated with being internationally-minded and to appreciate the benefits of working with others for a shared purpose.

VIDEO: PYP learners take ownership of their learning

Implementing the PYP in schools

The whole school benefits from using the PYP curriculum framework to organize their curriculum and community. In addition, the Programme Standards and Practice (PSP) framework supports schools with implementing and developing the PYP.

The PSP helps develop the environment, culture, policies and processes that support effective practice and exemplify the IB mission.

Read more about the PSP [2.2 MB] pdf

What is an IB education?

This document explains the ideals that underpin all IB programmes, communicating what lies at the heart of an IB education.