The current school-year has been a particularly exciting one for the students, staff and parents at English Bluff Elementary School in Tsawwassen.
“My kids are thrilled and are so excited to be a part of it,” said Christine Young, a parent of two students at the school.
Young is referring to the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme that is now taking place at the school. Last school-year, the entire school community came together to investigate the idea of IB. The IB program is an international educational framework taught at more than 4000 schools worldwide. It was established in 1968 and is renowned for its academic rigour and focus on students’ overall personal development.
After much research, the school community overwhelmingly agreed to become an IB school. Throughout this school year, English Bluff Elementary has been in its candidacy phase where they have begun to implement the IB teaching framework. Students learn the B.C. curriculum, but they learn it in a framework that connects learning to global and current realities, while personalizing learning by allowing students to inquire deeply into their interests.
“To have the global perspective is a great gift to give to the children and families of our community. The connection to current events gives the kids ‘Ah-ha’ moments in their learning. These real-life connections have been really powerful for my children,” said Young.
Teachers at the school have embraced planning and teaching through an IB framework, explains Toshi Carleton Gaines, a teacher at the school. The IB model encourages teacher collaboration and promotes teaching and learning that is cross-curricular and interdisciplinary.
“The approach is student-centred and exemplifies best practice. It’s very much in line with the Delta School District vision and with the new BC curriculum,” said Carleton Gaines. “Students are encouraged to develop a natural curiosity through meaningful inquiry that spurs critical thinking, communication and self-reflection skills,” she added.
The IB program at English Bluff is open to any student from kindergarten to grade seven, regardless of where they live. To register, parents should contact that school at 604-943-0201.
Under the new IB program, grade-seven student Ryan Hope has been exploring his passion for architecture.