Dear QAS Community and Visitors,
It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to Qatar Academy Sidra Primary School. Our learners and our community are at the heart of everything we do. As a team we are dedicated to high expectations, deep collaboration, and strong partnership with parents and the wider community.
The program at QAS Primary is driven and guided by the school’s Vision and Mission with the curriculum designed to give our students ‘roots to grow and wings to fly’. We have built a research-based curriculum that is clearly aligned with standards and provides student agency and efficacy. Through a balanced program that addresses children’s social, emotional, and academic development, we are able to develop the whole child and prepare our students to take action to create a better world.
As an International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years’ Program (PYP) school, we use the IB Learner Profile to teach our children what it means to be internationally-minded, lifelong learners. These attributes not only guide our students to be the kind of people we expect them to become, but serve also to guide our entire community- students, teachers, staff, and parents. Our program ensures that our students are provided many opportunities to understand and demonstrate these attributes in authentic settings.
Through an inquiry approach, students are able to ask questions, explore, wonder, collect data, seek information and solve problems in a variety of ways, thus actively engaging students in their effort to make sense of the world. Inquiry involves the synthesis, analysis, and manipulation of knowledge through play and guided learning as well. Through their experiences, students build conceptual understanding as well as skills that support lifelong learning. Our faculty is committed to challenging, inspiring and empowering students so they become leaders and contributors not only for tomorrow but for today as well.
At QAS Primary, we believe that student success at school is fostered through strong home-school communication, parental involvement, and support of their child’s education. Our goal is to create a partnership between school, parent, and child in order to inspire action and ignite students’ passion. We look forward to welcoming you as part of the QAS Primary family.
With warm regards,
Dr. Rebecca Carter
Programme Of Inquiry
Inquiry, as the leading pedagogical approach of the Primary Years Programme (PYP) recognizes students as being actively involved in their own learning and as taking responsibility for that learning. PYP learning is approached with a spirit of inquiry. Drawing from the transdisciplinary themes and students’ interests, inquiry is an authentic way for students to relate to, explore and understand the world around them.
As part of the learner profile, students are supported in becoming “inquirers”. Inquiry nurtures curiosity and promotes enthusiasm for life-long learning. Effective inquiry encourages students to think, challenge and extend their ideas; it prompts students to reflect and take action. Through the inquiry process, students develop and demonstrate/practice the approaches to learning and attributes of the learning profile.
Inquiry is purposeful and authentic. It incorporates problem-solving and supports students in achieving personal and shared goals. Inquiry extends students’ learning when the exploration of initial curiosity generates new questions and wondering. By situating inquiry in meaningful contexts, connections are made between personal experiences to local and global opportunities and challenges.
IB Primary Years Programme Early Years
Experiences during the early years lay the foundation for all future learning. A rapid rate of development during the early years occurs in the physical, emotional, social and cognitive domains. The brain and body develop faster than at any other point in a child’s life. Social development also takes shape in these early years as children are intrinsically motivated to discover, to play, and to make connections between themselves, others and their environments.
At QA Sidra, intentionally designed and meaningful play is the vehicle for learning. Through positioning play central to children’s development, teachers create a non-threatening environment for children to learn about the world at their own pace. PYP early years teachers create stimulating learning spaces, listen deeply to students and craft exciting avenues for inquiry. They ensure a balance between listening to individuals, shaping shared investigations and ensuring overall intentions for learning. Using a repertoire of strategies, tools, and understandings, teachers work closely with students to co-construct inquiries and reflect regularly on their practice.
IB Primary Years Programme Elementary Years
The Primary Years Program (PYP) supports students from Early Learners-Pre 3-to PYP (Grade) 5. In finding a core of knowledge relevant to all students in international settings, the PYP bases its curriculum framework around Units of Inquiry that follow Transdisciplinary Themes.
Who We Are – Where We Are In Place And Time – How We Express Ourselves – How The World Works – How We Organize Ourselves
Sharing the planet The units of inquiry are usually four to six weeks long. They are based around a central idea and provide opportunities for further inquiry. Using a constructivist approach (constructing new understanding by building on the students prior knowledge) traditional subjects are integrated and connected to support learning. Each unit includes structured, purposeful inquiry that engages students actively in their own learning. The students make connections between life in school, life at home and life in the world. Connecting learning to the world is a key to be effective life-long learners and developing international-mindedness.
The Curriculum Framework Within The PYP Includes 5 Essential Elements:
- Knowledge – What do we want students to know?
- Concepts – What do we want students to understand?
- Approaches to Learning Skills – What do we want students to be able to do?
- Attitudes – What do we want students to feel, value and demonstrate?
- Action – How do we want students to act?
An inquiry approach allows students to construct knowledge in units of learning and stand-alone lessons. This means that teachers are facilitators of opportunities where children: inquire, make connections, develop conceptual understandings, think critically, work collaboratively, consider multiple perspectives, construct meaning, reflect, and take action.