Welcome to Harare International School’s PYP / Elementary School and thank you for taking the time to visit us. We hope that this brief introduction, will serve to answer any initial questions you might have about what we have to offer to our students.
The PYP ES is an integral part of the whole of the Harare International School (HIS). Everything that happens in this division of the school impacts on the Middle School and High School and on the whole HIS community. With this in mind and aligned with our Vision and Mission statements, we are committed to the pursuit of sustainable excellence in all aspects of our work and operations. Our primary goal is to promote the development and enhance the potential, attainment and achievement of the whole learner – physically, socially, emotionally, aesthetically and intellectually.
Our enrolment in the PYP ES is approximately 220 students within the age range 3 – 11 years old and comprising approximately 40 nationalities. The class range is from Early Childhood (EC 1) – Grade 5 and the average class size is 15 students. Student learning is facilitated and supported by a dedicated, qualified and committed faculty of 25 teachers and 17 teaching assistants.
The pedagogical framework of the ES is the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP) which is an international curriculum that develops the skills needed for life long learning. The PYP is grounded in measurable standards for teaching and learning. The ES is fully authorized by the IB for the PYP. The PYP promotes international mindedness through the IB Learner Profile and positive attitudes; it is transdisciplinary across several disciplines (including Mathematics, Language Arts, Science, Social Studies, Arts, Physical, Health, Social and Personal Studies), concept driven, inquiry based and skills oriented; an additional and important aspect of the PYP is that it leads to responsible and sustainable student-led action. The PYP is also aligned to the concept of 21st Century Learning.
The Everyday Math (EDM) programme, which is based on the Common Core Standards, is used in all grades. A range of specialist subjects are also a mandatory part of the curriculum and these are: Visual Arts, Music, Information Technology, Physical Education, Spanish and French; English as an additional language and Learning and Counseling support. Our students also have access to a vibrant after school programme, which includes a range of activities to promote sport, the arts and leisure pursuits.
In order to ensure optimal service delivery of the curriculum we strive to ensure that the learning environment is compatible with the expectations for the best possible teaching – learning outcomes and practices. The ES has its own designated playgrounds, music room, art studio and two Modern Language rooms, along with shared computer labs and multiple class sets of iPads. Students and teachers have access to a range resources, including information-technology and easy access to our shared media center and state of the art gymnasium, fitness center and swimming pool
The learning environment of the ES is a place where the physical, emotional and psychological safety of our students is of paramount importance. Moreover, we are extremely responsive to their needs across the continuum from additional learning support to enrichment – we celebrate the diversity of our learners and their families. As such, we appreciate and respond to the fact that each student has his/her own learning style and profile, personality, talents and cultural heritage. We value a strong and sustainable school-home partnership and to facilitate this we have in place various ways of communicating with parents about student learning and progress and school events. We implement an open door policy where parents’ concerns and issues are raised and addressed.
Through this brief introduction to the ES division of HIS, I hope you have gained some informative insights into our work here. There is, however, much more to know about us. If you would like further information about HIS and the PYP ES in particular, please contact me on the email detailed below.