INTERNATIONAL PRIMARY EDUCATION AND LANGUAGE LEARNING
One of the most challenging bets in International Primary Education nowadays is the Primary Years educational Programme (PYP), designed and introduced by the IBO in 1997 as a part of the wider International Baccalaureate Programme.
The PYP curriculum model could be best represented by constructivist approach with its belief into learning as a process of continual travel on the cyclic path of constructing, tasting and confirming or revising a hypothesis. Thus, the inquiry model, allowing students to be actively involved in their own learning, is recognized to be the leading pedagogical approach in the PYP.
Language perspective is a crucial one in the PYP programme. In order to introduce a bilingual vision of the educational content, language is not taught as a separate discipline, but interdisciplinary, as a part of social and cognitive development.
Language acquisition is seen as a process of constructing meaning based on complex relationship between language and learning:
1. learning language, traditional communicative approach,
2. learning through language, using English to teach other subjects
3. learning about language, developing students awareness of language structures.
In practice, it means a balanced use of language as a communicative tool, as well as a flexible resource for further learning and cognitive growth.
In continuation, we are offering a detail examination of PYP language learning programme implementation in one of Madrid international schools.