Learning Principles

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Our learning principles represent our founding beliefs and our association with the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program (IB PYP).  They are a result of our close observations and specialized understanding of children, as well as the research, influential texts, and best practices that ensure our mission and philosophy.  These are the bedrock of our school community.  Therefore, at PJS we believe that children learn best when:

What children learn is:      

  • Developmentally appropriate
  • Engaging, active and hands-on
  • Informative, not definitive
  • Purposeful and relevant to their lives
  • Transdisciplinary and interconnected
  • Provocative and inspires creativity
  • Internationally minded
  • Conceptually oriented
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How children learn is through:

  • Bridging the gap from the known to the new
  • Collaborating
  • Meaningful contexts
  • Problem solving
  • Appropriate challenges based upon individual learning styles
  • Inquiry
  • Active engagement
  • Asking questions and making close observations
  • Opportunities to take risks and be innovative
  • Valuing mistakes through iterative learning
  • Clear expectations, meaningful and authentic (self-) assessment and reflection
  • Ongoing and direct feedback



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The environment in which children learn:

  • Is supportive of the development of well-balanced children with rich academic strengths and strong character traits
  • Is light-filled, exposed to the natural world, and is joyful
  • Honors the importance of play in each child's development
  • Endeavors to make the process of thinking and learning visible
  • Is nurturing and makes its community members feel known and understood
  • Embraces family members and values multiple perspectives in a diverse community
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