IB Mission Statement
The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable, and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end, the organization works with schools, governments, and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment. These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate, and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.
Approaches to learning (ATL) are skills designed to enable students in the IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) to “learn how to learn.” They are intended to apply across curriculum requirements and provide a common language for teachers and students to use when reflecting and building on the process of learning. Dunya IB School possesses an ATL planning chart for all years of the MYP. However, broader implementation of ATLs implicitly and explicitly is embedded in day-to-day learning experiences, so that students have opportunities to practice and incrementally develop a range of ATL skills.
Approaches to learning are most powerful when teachers plan and students engage with them in connection with significant and relevant content knowledge in order to develop transferable understanding. All teachers in IB school are responsible for integrating and explicitly teaching ATL skills.
The most effective way to develop approaches to learning is through ongoing, process-focused disciplinary and interdisciplinary teaching and learning. Teachers can use key and related concepts along with global contexts as vehicles for teaching effective learning strategies. Likewise, approaches to learning can be powerful tools for exploring significant content. This dual focus (content and process) promotes student engagement, deep understanding, transfer of skills, and academic success.
The majority of teachers are embedding ATL skills into unit planners and creating opportunities for students to practice them. However, survey findings and classroom observations suggest teachers often do not make explicit reference to these ATL skills.
In contrast to last year, IB World Schools observed fewer instances of ATLs being implicitly or explicitly embedded into class activities and more instances of ATL skills only being used when developing unit planners. Further, despite reported instances of student reflections following the completion of service or personal projects, we did not observe instances where ATLs were embedded into out-of-class activities.
Survey findings and site visits also indicate that a small percentage of teachers have not yet bought into teaching ATL skills. Reasons for this limited support include a lack of teacher understanding of how to teach ATLs and administrative support (i.e. limited guidance and opportunities for teacher planning). However, a majority of teachers viewed ATLs as important and strive to implement them.
IB learner profile:
The International Baccalaureate® (IB) learner profile describes a broad range of human capacities and responsibilities that go beyond academic success. They imply a commitment to help all members of the school community learn to respect themselves, others, and the world around them.
Each of the IB's programmes is committed to the development of students according to the IB learner profile.
The profile aims to develop learners who are:
- Inquirers - We nurture our curiosity, developing skills for inquiry and research. We know how to learn independently and with others. We learn with enthusiasm and sustain our love of learning throughout life.
- Knowledgeable - We develop and use conceptual understanding, exploring knowledge across a range of disciplines. We engage with issues and ideas that have local and global significance.
- Thinkers - We use critical and creative thinking skills to analyze and take responsible action on complex problems. We exercise initiative in making reasoned, ethical decisions.
- Communicators - We express ourselves confidently and creatively in more than one language and in many ways. We collaborate effectively, listening carefully to the perspectives of other individuals and groups.
- Principled - We act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness and justice, and with respect for the dignity and rights of people everywhere. We take responsibility for our actions and their consequences.
- Open-minded - We critically appreciate our own cultures and personal histories, as well as the values and traditions of others. We seek and evaluate a range of points of view, and we are willing to grow from the experience.
- Caring - We show empathy, compassion, and respect. We have a commitment to service, and we act to make a positive difference in the lives of others and in the world around us.
- Risk-takers - We approach uncertainty with forethought and determination; we work independently and cooperatively to explore new ideas and innovative strategies. We are resourceful and resilient in the face of challenges and change.
- Balanced - We understand the importance of balancing different aspects of our lives—intellectual, physical, and emotional—to achieve well-being for ourselves and others. We recognize our interdependence with other people and with.
- Reflective - We thoughtfully consider the world and our own ideas and experience. We work to understand our strengths and weaknesses in order to support our learning and personal development.