Methodology and curriculum
Early Years Curriculum
The International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program (PYP) is for children aged 3 to 12 years. Our school applies this curricular approach in Early Years and Primary School, based on the five essential elements of this program.
Inquiry-based learning empowers students to find answers to their own questions, while promoting the development of skills, attitudes and conceptual understanding of our lifelong learners. Our school values our students’ prior knowledge that they bring to class and then encourage students to use it as the foundation upon which to continue building their own learning. We implement a variety of strategies to promote visible thinking through routines that generate high levels of thinking and help students identify their metacognitive processes.
In Toddlers, our 2-year-olds are provided with learning experiences to develop age-appropriate skills and routines as well as to develop concepts, knowledge and abilities they will need to continue learning at the next level.
Starting in Preschool (3-year-olds) children learn through Units of Inquiry as a part of the PYP. Ver -> Primary Years Program – Education at ACIS
At ACIS, we are committed to supporting each child in their social, emotional and intellectual development, providing meaningful experiences that are carefully and systematically designed taking into account the stages of child developmental as well as abilities, interests, ages and curricular areas.
The curricular program that is carried out in Early Years and Primary School combines the Peruvian National Curriculum with the expectations of the International Baccalaureate. As a result, we have a Program of Inquiry that covers the six transdisciplinary themes of the PYP as well as the Peruvian Government’s standards.
Toddlers: 2 years old
Preschool: 3 years old
Pre-Kinder: 4 years old
Kinder: 5 years old
Through our new math program, students develop an understanding not only of the mathematical processes, but also the important concepts and applications of the mathematical principles they are studying. They observe, construct, analyze, and solve mathematics through practice and relevant learning, enabling deeper understanding, critical thinking, and strong problem-solving skills. Using mathematical situations from the units of inquiry, students build on their prior knowledge, learn to overcome obstacles applying a variety of new strategies, and use mathematics to explore the world around them. Students do not simply memorize an isolated mathematical skill, but put into practice the application of mathematical principles in a logical way explaining their reasoning, coming to their own conclusions, and communicating their findings in their own words.
Bilingualism in Early Years
Learning a second language at an early age not only increases a student’s ability to achieve oral and written fluency, but also a variety of other academic aspects including critical thinking skills, creativity, and flexibility. Our youngest students are most able to comprehend the rules of a language intuitively and correctly imitate the sounds and pronunciation. This is especially true before eight years old, after which the brain has more difficulty processing the exact accent of new languages naturally. We are very pleased to help our students learn instinctively through songs and fun experiences.
Children in the Toddlers and Preschool classrooms (two and three year olds) receive the majority of their instruction in Spanish and have an average of 20 minutes of English per day during which they learn basic songs, rhymes, games and expressions while being gradually exposed to the rhythms and sounds of English. Our students are introduced to a bilingual program starting from the age of two and we maintain high expectations for developing skills, both oral and written, with genuine learning experiences in two languages.
In Pre-Kinder (four year olds) and Kindergarten (five year olds) students experience our English immersion program, studying all main subjects in both languages, such that approximately half of their school day is in English. The English immersion program continues throughout Primary School during which our students study some courses in Spanish and others in English. The emphasis is on learning to express themselves orally and in writing in both languages and to use these languages to interact with the world, learn, and engage in inquiry.
We teach early literacy using the Jolly Phonics Program through which students develop a phonetic understanding of the language and learn the written world through a synthetic phonics approach. This program, developed in the United Kingdom, enables students to learn English sounds using multi-sensory methods.
Our school is committed to supporting multilingualism as a part of promoting our students’ international mindedness and cultural understanding.
Holistic Approach in Early Years
We understand that people have different ways of processing information, different ways of understanding the world around them and that everyone has an area in which they excel.
We focus on developing not only students’ academic achievement, but also their social and emotional health. Our school seeks to offer a variety of opportunities so that each student can demonstrate what s/he is good at and be self-aware of their strengths upon which they can build a future as well as strengthen other areas. In addition, we differentiate instructional activities in class in order to respect our students’ diverse learning styles.
Workshops in Early Years
We seek to develop students who are good communicators, understanding and expressing their ideas with confidence and creativity in different languages and forms of communication. Developing artistic abilities is an integral part of an IB education that develops balanced students who understand the importance of physical, mental, and emotional well-being.
The Early Years children take part in weekly art, music, motor skills, and theater workshops. Art classes are a transdisciplinary aspect of each grade’s unit of inquiry and curricular planning.
Every year we produce artistic presentations to showcase to families what students have developed during the weekly workshops.
Technology in Early Years
Our school incorporates technology to enhance learning. The use of technology is gradually increased from Early Years to Primary School.
The classrooms have technology that allows access to increasingly dynamic and motivating resources.