Primary Years Programme Summary

In September 2010, Notre Dame Marist Academy's lower division (JK-5) was recognized by the International Baccalaureate Organization as a World School and is fully authorized to offer the Primary Years Programme (PYP) to its students.

The IB Primary Years Programme, for students aged 3 to 12, focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside.

As an IB World School, we are expected to adhere to the following standards:

  • Share the mission and commitment of the IB to quality international education
  • Play an active and supporting role in the worldwide community of IB schools
  • Share knowledge and experience in the development of the IB programme
  • Commit to the professional development of teachers and administrators

PYP Programme Features

  • Encourages international-mindedness in IB students
  • Encourages a positive attitude to learning by engaging students in inquiries and developing their awareness of the process of learning so that they become lifelong learners.
  • Reflects real life by encouraging learning beyond traditional subjects with meaningful, in-depth inquiries into real issues
  • Emphasizes through the Learner Profile the development of the whole student- physically, intellectually, emotionally, and ethically

The IB Primary Years Programme frames the learning activities of the school community. It is used in both national and international schools, as well as state and privately funded schools.   
The most significant and distinctive feature of the IB Primary Years Programme are the six transdisciplinary themes. These themes are about issues that have meaning for, and are important to, all of us. The programme offers a balance between learning through the subject areas, and learning beyond them. The six themes of global significance create a transdisciplinary framework that allows students to “step up” beyond the confines of learning within the following subject areas:

  • Who we are
  • Where we are in place and time
  • How we express ourselves
  • How the world works
  • How we organize ourselves
  • Sharing the planet

The programme puts great emphasis on learning about these transdisciplinary themes. Each theme is addressed each year by all students, with the exception of students aged 3 to 5, who typically address four of the themes each year. The themes provide the opportunity to incorporate local and global issues into the curriculum.
PYP Programme Benefits
Students and parents will develop an understanding of the IB Learner Profile. The ten aspirational qualities of the learner profile inspire and motivate the work of the teachers, students and schools, providing a statement of the aims and values of the IB and the definition of what it means to be of “international-mindedness.”
 IB learners strive to be:

  • Inquirers
  • Thinkers
  • Communicators
  • Risk-takers
  • Knowledgeable
  • Principled
  • Open-minded
  • Caring
  • Balanced
  • Reflective

Students in the 21st century are faced with the challenge of learning about an interconnected world where knowledge is constantly developing. The IB Primary Years Programme prepares students to be active participants in a lifelong journey of thoughts, experiences, and learning. Notre Dame Marist Academy believes the more we engage our students in broad-based, international thinking we are truly preparing them for MYP (Middle Years Programme) and the opportunity for the DP (Diploma Programme) and any other future education, endeavors and experiences.

Click here for IB Curriculum at Notre Dame Lower Division

For more information about the International Baccalaureate: