IB Primary Years Programme (PYP)

We believe that children have a hundred ways of thinking, of discovering, and of learning.

The languages, or ways of learning, are all part of the child. Learning and play are not separate. Child’s play is more than recreation—it is a child’s “work.”

Through play, young learners explore and investigate, demonstrating the skills and dispositions that will follow them as they move through kindergarten. Also intrinsic to Summerhill’s kindergarten program is active learning, in which we immerse our young learners in an environment that provides opportunities for action to occur, and consequently, that allows them to choose or think through solutions to problems for themselves.

IB PYP in the Early Years

“The PYP prepares students to become active, caring, lifelong learners who demonstrates respect for themselves and others and have the capacity to participate in the world around them. It focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both within and beyond the classroom.” (ibo.org 2005–2016)

Instilling a Love of Learning

Summerhill also imparts essential skills to our children. We develop our curriculum by paying close attention to children’s sense of wonder and their questions, and developing from there. Children are able to construct their own understanding in a way that is unique to themselves by

  • Exploring, wondering and questioning
  • Making connections between previous learning and current learning
  • experimenting and playing with possibilities.
  • Using materials in flexible and imaginative ways
  • Making choices and decisions
  • Working collaboratively with others

Our Units Of Inquiry

We strive for our units of inquiry to be engaging, meaningful, challenging, and significant. Learners explore conceptual understanding through the units of inquiry within six trans-disciplinary themes of global significance.

These themes provide a meaningful and authentic context for the subject areas of maths, literacy, art, science and technology, social studies, and personal and physical education.

Who We Are—The learners explore their beliefs and values, human relationships, rights and responsibilities, and what it means to be a person.

Where We Are in Place and Time—The learners explore their personal histories, history and geography from local and global perspectives, their homes and journeys, and how individuals are connected in both local and global contexts.


How We Express Ourselves—The learners explore the ways in which they express their feelings, ideas, beliefs, and values.

How the World Works—The learners explore the physical and material world, and the world of science and technology. The children inquire how they impact society and the environment.

How We Organize Ourselves—The learners explore the interconnectedness of systems and communities as well as the impact of the decisions they make in their community.

Sharing the Planet—The learners explore their rights and responsibilities in sharing resources with other people and with other living things. The learners explore peace and conflict resolution and their responsibilities in this process.

Timeline of IB development

Summerhill is an authorised PYP school. To find out more about the International Baccalaureate please visit the IBO website.

Please download the references of IB :