PYP and Curriculum

At the PYP level, the IB is not a specific curricula; it is an approach to teaching. Like any other school, GNS delivers the British Columbia curriculum, but our teachers enhance it with the IB philosophy.

Using the Transdisciplinary Themes, teachers develop a Program of Inquiry (POI) that allows students to explore beyond set subject areas like math, English, or social sciences. Teachers work together to develop investigations into important ideas, which require a substantial and high level of involvement on the part of students.

With the PYP approach, students learn everything required of them in the BC curriculum—and much more! The students’ inquiries into the six units often lead the class beyond what is expected by the province; the themes provide a culturally meaningful framework for students and teach them why what they study is significant on a personal and global level. In turn, this understanding helps them recognize that everything they learn is part of a lifelong educational journey.

PYP Transdisciplinary Themes

Who we are

An inquiry into the nature of the self; beliefs and values; personal, physical, mental, social and spiritual health; human relationships including families, friends, communities, and cultures; rights and responsibilities; what it means to be human.

Where we are in place and time

An inquiry into orientation in place and time; personal histories; homes and journeys; the discoveries, explorations and migrations of humankind; the relationships between and the interconnectedness of individuals and civilizations, from local and global perspectives.

How we express ourselves

An inquiry into the ways in which we discover and express ideas, feelings, nature, culture, beliefs and values; the ways in which we reflect on, extend and enjoy our creativity; our appreciation of the aesthetic.

How the world works

An inquiry into the natural world and its laws; the interaction between the natural world (physical and biological) and human societies; how humans use their understanding of scientific principles; the impact of scientific and technological advances on society and on the environment.

How we organize ourselves

An inquiry into the interconnectedness of human-made systems and communities; the structure and function of organizations; societal decision-making; economic activities and their impact on humankind and the environment.

Sharing the planet

An inquiry into rights and responsibilities in the struggle to share finite resources with other people and with other living things; communities and the relationships within and between them; access to equal opportunities; peace and conflict resolution.

Junior School Curriculum Book
Download a copy of our Junior School Curriculum Book to read more about our Junior School program.