In the Primary Years Programme (PYP), sciences are viewed as the exploration of the biological, chemical and physical aspects of the natural world, and the relationships between them. Our understanding of science is constantly changing and evolving. The inclusion of science within the PYP leads learners to an appreciation and awareness of the world as it is viewed from a scientific perspective. It encourages curiosity and ingenuity and enables the student to develop an understanding of the world. Reflection on scientific knowledge also helps students to develop a sense of responsibility regarding the impact of their actions on themselves, others and their world.
The knowledge component of science in the PYP is arranged into four strands: living things, Earth and space, materials and matter, and forces and energy.
Living things: The study of the characteristics, systems and behaviors of humans and other animals, and of plants; the interactions and relationships between and among them, and with their environment.
Earth and space: The study of planet Earth and its position in the universe, particularly its relationship with the sun; the natural phenomena and systems that shape the planet and the distinctive features that identify it; the infinite and finite resources of the planet.
Materials and matter: The study of the properties, behaviors and uses of materials, both natural and human-made; the origins of human-made materials and how they are manipulated to suit a purpose.
Forces and energy: The study of energy, its origins, storage and transfer, and the work it can do; the study of forces; the application of scientific understanding through inventions and machines.
The social studies component of the PYP is characterized by concepts and skills rather than by content. We ensure that a breadth and balance of social studies content is covered through the units of inquiry. The knowledge component of social studies in the PYP is arranged into five strands:
Human systems and economic activities: The study of how and why people construct organizations and systems; the ways in which people connect locally and globally; the distribution of power and authority.
Social organization and culture: The study of people, communities, cultures and societies; the ways in which individuals, groups and societies interact with each other.
Continuity and change through time: The study of the relationships between people and events through time; the past, its influences on the present and its implications for the future; people who have shaped the future through their actions.
Human and natural environments: The study of the distinctive features that give a place its identity; how people adapt to and alter their environment; how people experience and represent place; the impact of natural disasters on people and the built environment.
Resources and the environment: The interaction between people and the environment; the study of how humans allocate and manage resources; the positive and negative effects of this management; the impact of scientific and technological developments on the environment
These strands are concept-driven and are inextricably linked to each other. They also provide links to other subject areas of the PYP curriculum model.