Welcome IST’s PYP Information Site


Welcome to the International School of Tanganyika’s PYP Website. Here you will find what’s happening with developments in the Primary Years Programme, curriculum, examples of student work and much more. Please check back often and feel free to leave us a message with your ideas, links and good thoughts. Asante!

The learner profile at the heart of everything



PYP logo 2013Before the break, a group of parents explored the learner profile and discussed what this might look like at home. The profile needs to come home with children! We agreed that adults need to serve as models and guides for children and show them what these attributes look like in different settings. please click on the link below to see a summary of what parents came up with:
Profile Attribute from parents



learner Profile parent workshop ad

PYP Workshop on Thursday, October 10th @ 7.20am



You are most welcome to a workshop on the LEARNER PROFILE on Thursday, October 10th at 7.20am in the Elementary Staffroom. We will explore the different traits and discuss how to live these traits every day. This is a new workshop and I look forward to seeing both new and old (well, not really “old”) faces!


learner profile grab



Welcome to another school year at IST


Hello and welcome (back) to IST. My name is Leah Bortolin. I am the PYP coordinator at the elementary school. I am looking forward to seeing and getting to know as many parents as possible. This year I will offer a number of workshops:

September 12 – An introduction to the PYP
October 10 – The learner profile
November 21 – The six traits of writing
January 16 – Inquiry
February 27 – Writing text types
March 27 – Approaches to learning (skills)
April 17 -Action
May 22 – What to do in the holidays

I welcome you all to come and have a chat anytime in room 4b!

Learning Through Lyrics


Learning Through Lyrics

Our very own Ms Brook has been published in the IB World Magazine!

Spotlight on …. caring


IB learners strive to be caring

They show empathy, compassion and respect towards the needs and feelings of others. They have a personal commitment to service, and act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment.


This is often seen as the most straightforward and easy to implement of the Learner Profile attributes. However, there is more to consider than it might at first appear. Being kind and friendly certainly fall under the umbrella of caring. However, we can also care for people we don’t know, for our personal possessions, for our physical and natural environment, and for the planet.

The EC students have just begun to study the idea that we have relationships with other living things that share our environment.  By the end of the unit, they will not only understand which things are living or not, and what they need to survive, but they will have begun to explore how their actions can make a positive or negative difference to a variety of living things.

Grade 1 have already considered how our choices affect our environment, and have realized that reducing, reusing and recycling have a big impact on our world. Many of them have taken student-initiated action, including one group writing a proposal to Mr Lorenzini for starting a compost project at school. Check out some of their other ideas for action on their blog http://istgrade1.wordpress.com/

In an upcoming unit, Grade 3 will be exploring the issues connected with the fact that while water is essential to live, the Earth has a limited amount. Their growing understanding of this issue will hopefully encourage them to explore ways they can care for Earth and others by reflecting on and changing their behavior.

Grade 4 students showed an increasing understanding of the rights of children everywhere, and their discovery that these rights are not always met led to many actions. A powerful choice that many students made was to take a vow of silence for a day, in respect for those children around the world who do not have a voice. An excerpt from their assembly on  children’s rights can be found on their blog http://istgrade4.wordpress.com/

Some suggestions for how to be caring include:

  • Perform random acts of kindness
  • Look out for each other’s well being
  • Help with housework
  • Reuse your water bottle
  • Pass on toys and books you don’t need to others

Can you add to this list? Send your ideas, and your photos of people caught being caring to me at scook@istafrica.com, or add comments below.

Spotlight on … open-minded


December’s learner profile attribute in the spotlight is an appropriate one for the holiday season.


 IB learners strive to be open-minded

They understand and appreciate their own cultures and personal histories, and are open to the perspectives, values and traditions of other individuals and communities. They are accustomed to seeking and evaluating a range of points of view, and are willing to grow from the experience.

At a time of year when many families and communities are celebrating their beliefs in a variety of ways, it is an opportunity to share our own important aspects of our identities with others, as well as to be receptive to and learn about what makes other members of our community special. Another way to celebrate our diversity, there is value in identifying some of the many similarities we share, even with our various perspectives and values.

openminded2Grade 1 students have been exploring this very idea in their ongoing unit with the central idea: Communities have different celebrations with similar features. Many of them already understand that everyone, regardless of religion, nationality or culture, has many reasons to celebrate. They are also discovering that all these different celebrations have many features in common, including decorations, special food, and symbols.

Grade 2’s recent Who We Are unit also gave students an opportunity to exercise open-mindedness. They were exploring the central idea that understanding our identities helps us to understand and respect others. They have learned about the visible and deeper aspects of our identities through exploration of the cultural iceberg.

As we share and enjoy each other’s special celebrations, let’s remember to find ways to model and value open-mindedness in ourselves and our children.