PYP Curriculum and Policies
Hazeldale teachers and administrators collaborated to align our school's policies and procedures to the Primary Years Programme. These documents provide guidelines that will help as we shift our philosophy to support our students on their journey of becoming global citizens that are ready to make the world a better and more peaceful place.
Hazeldale Programme of Inquiry
Our Programme of Inquiry is a constant work in progress. This document gives an overview of the transdisciplinary units that are taught at each grade level. Units in a PYP school are conceptual. The central ideas should be transferrable to any place around the world. Students receive all of their science and social studies learning within the context of a unit of inquiry.
When you think of assessment, you probably think of the paper and pencil tests you took as a child. Assessment is much different at a PYP school. We believe that students can demonstrate their knowledge in a variety of ways. We also believe that students should play an active role in reflecting on their progress and setting goals. Our assessment policy lays out philosophy and procedures to reflect our beliefs about assessment that are aligned to the PYP.
HAZELDALE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL ASSESSMENT POLICY
Hazeldale Elementary School works to support and inspire every child to think, tolearn, to care, and to engage with power and agency in a changing world.We provide a learning environment and instruction that promotes engagement,academic excellence, self-confidence, independence, risk and resilience. Wefoster respect, an appreciation of self and others, and collaboration through inquiry, exploration, goal setting, and service.
Hazeldale Elementary believes that assessment is an essential tool used to gain insight into the effectiveness of teaching and learning. Assessment is the ongoing process of gathering evidence for and of learning. It identifies what students know, understand, can do, and feel at different stages in the learning process. By observing and listening to our students, we are able to plan for meaningful and authentic learning experiences. Assessment is designed to empower students and highlight their strengths. Students and teachers should be actively engaged in assessing the students progress as part of the development of their wider critical-thinking and self-assessment skills. This enables students to reflect and set goals accordingly. Assessment reflects best practices that support the learner and the teacher in the promotion of student success. At Hazeldale we believe assessment is integral to all teaching and learning. It is central to thePYP goal of thoughtfully and effectively guiding students through the five essential elements of learning:
- The discovery of knowledge
- The understanding of concepts
- The acquisition of skills
- The development of attitudes
- The decision to take action
The assessment component in the school’s curriculum can itself be subdivided into three closely related areas.
- Assessing- how we discover what the students know and have learned
- Recording- how we choose to collect and analyze the data
- Reporting- how we choose to communicate information
The assessment of each student’s development and learning is an essential component of the curriculum. It also informs continued development and teaching. A balance of assessment types is necessary for students to demonstrate proficiency with sufficient evidence. Two types of assessment that are used are formative and summative assessments.
Formative Assessment: provides information that is used in order to plan the next stage in learning. It is interwoven with learning and helps teachers and students to find out what the students already know and can do and next steps in instruction. Formative assessment and teaching are directly linked and function purposefully together. Assessment in the classroom includes:
- Exit tickets
- Performance assessments
- Process-focused assessments
- Selected response
- Open-ended tasks
- Written reflections
Summative assessment: are used to evaluate student learning, skill acquisition, and academic achievement at the conclusion of an instructional period—typically at the end of a project, unit,course, semester, or school year.Summative assessments in the classroom includes:
- End of unit assessments
- District benchmark or interim assessments
- Kindergarten Readiness
- Easy CBM
- State assessments
- Oregon Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (Science Grade 5)
- Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (English Language Arts and Math Grades 3-5)
Teachers use a range of methods and approaches to gather information about a student’s learning. They record this information using a variety of tools.
- Anecdotal Records/Notes
- Learning Progressions
- Audio/ Video/ Photographs
Reporting on assessments at Hazeldale includes communicating what students know,understand, and do. Reporting involves parents, students, and teachers as partners and is honest, comprehensive, and understandable to all parties.
Reporting to students, parents, and teachers occurs through:
- Regular written and oral feedback
- Twice yearly report cards
- Work that is sent home
Teachers use a proficiency model to assess and report on student progress. The proficiency model is a district wide structure for communicating progress.The scale is as follows:
4 = Highly proficient
3 = Proficient
2 = Nearly Proficient
1 = Developing
Effective assessments allow students to:
- Share their learning with others
- Demonstrate a range of knowledge, conceptual understanding and skills
- Use a variety of modalities (methods) to demonstrate knowledge and skills
- Understand the purpose of the assessment with clear criteria for success
- Understand their strengths and areas for improvement
- Reflect during the process of learning, not just at the end
- Reflect on the knowledge and skills they have gained and set goals for what they still need to do
Self-assess their progress toward learning targets.Effective assessments allow teachers to:
- Provide timely feedback to students
- Reflect on their practice in order to better meet the needs of students and drive future instruction
- Analyze student understanding in regards to the central idea, essential elements, and standards
- Collaborate with each other in order to reflect on future practice
- Understand the knowledge and skills each student needs to develop for future success
- Evaluate students on their knowledge and skills through using a variety of assessment tools and strategies
Assessment Review Statement
The assessment policy will be reviewed on an annual basis by all staff.
Language is the essential tool for communicating in the world today. As a PYP school, we value and support not just English, but our world language (Spanish) and each child's mother tongue.
The purpose of this language policy is to provide a framework for language instruction at Hazeldale Elementary including the Language of Instruction, Mother Tongue Support,and World Language Instruction.
At Hazeldale Elementary School, we believe that language is the vehicle that facilitates the journey to all learning. It is the construct from which we develop and deepen knowledge through listening and reading. Language is also a means to articulate one’s feelings and ideas through speaking and writing. Language is an essential part of one’s identity and is used to share that identity with others. Through thoughtful scaffolding, all students can be confident and effective communicators. We believe that all language learning is most effective when it is integrated through meaningful contexts. Students must learn to utilize speaking, listening, reading, and writing as tools in order to develop knowledge and conceptual understanding. Our responsibility as a school is to provide inclusive and equitable learning experiences to all students, regardless of learning levels and language proficiencies. Finally, we believe that language connects us to each other by building intercultural understanding, appreciation, and empathy. Through embracing and developing our community’s linguistic diversity, we strive to further inspire students to make a difference in our global community.
Hazeldale has a linguistically rich and diverse community. There are 17 languages spoken at home by our 463 students.
While English is spoken at home by the majority of students, 69%, the other 31% of students speak 17 different languages. A delineated overview of mother tongue as reported by families by percentage is below:
Breakdown of Mother Tongue for 2018-19 School Year
- English - 69%
- Spanish - 20%
- Vietnamese - 2%
Languages represented that make up less than 1% of the population:
Arabic, Cambodian, Cantonese, Khmer, Korean, Kurdish, Mandarin, Nepalese, Punjabi,Romanian, Russian, Thai, Ukrainian
Language of Instruction
At Hazeldale, English is the connecting language across our curriculum. We believe that reading, writing, listening, speaking, viewing, and presenting are essential language skills that are best developed through authentic experiences. Since our Programme of Inquiry has been constructed to engage students in significant and relevant experiences, language skills are most authentic when they are integrated into our units of inquiry. As a public school, we use the Common Core State Standards as our scope and sequence to guide instructional decisions in reading, writing, listening, speaking,viewing, and presenting as we make connections to our Programme of Inquiry. Language skills are to be used as tools to access content and concepts within our units of inquiry. However, it is equally essential that teachers provide students instruction in language skills. While reading, writing, listening, speaking, viewing, and presenting eachhave strategies specific to those skills, some commonalities in best practices in language skill instruction are held by all.
Best practices in language instruction that will be implemented:
- The love of language is modelled by all staff members and is a pervasive culture in the school.
- Teachers will provide instruction on specific skills that are in each student’s zone of proximal development. Instruction includes methods such as modelling,inquiry, and discussion.
- Differentiation of instruction is provided through conferring and small groups in order to meet all students’ language needs. This includes providing appropriately level materials and incorporating SIOP strategies, such as sentence frames, that positively impact all students.
- Teachers will help identify students at their rate and level of proficiency (zone of proximal development) through frequent and varied assessments that align with the school’s Assessment Policy.
- Teachers provide students access to rich texts and language experiences that reflect the cultural backgrounds and experiences of students in their classes, as well as those from around the world.
- Student growth in language is measured by a varied body of evidence that may include student reflections, anecdotal notes, journals, exit tickets, portfolios,IRLA, and tests including state testing.
- All teachers are viewed as language teachers and language skill instruction issupported throughout the school. All disciplines include instruction on language unique to those areas.
- The library is used as an extension of the classroom that empowers students to access texts that excite them and further their reading within the units of inquiry. It provides additional space for students to engage in small groups to utilize additional technology to create products and projects in connection to their units of inquiry.
- Special education and ELL students receive services that will help them develop essential language skills that will enable them to be successful while accessing the Programme of Inquiry. Teachers use both a “push in” and “pull out” model.
- Parent involvement is essential to developing language skills. The school has structures put in place to involve parents in the process. Examples include, butare not limited to: Parent and community members reading to emergent readers,parent nights about reading support, providing parents with skills cards for reading, sending book bags home when families sign up to attend our school,family game night to develop conversations at home.
Mother Tongue Support:
Differentiated instruction for English, the language of instruction, is provided by all staff.Students that have do not yet have English language proficiency, receive ELL services each day. Their services are determined by the English Language Proficiency Assessment standardized test. Hazeldale has 3 ELL teachers that use the push in model for language support. These ELL specialists collaborate with classroom teachers to determine goals and support with instruction.Since Hazeldale has such linguistically rich and diverse community, it is essential that teachers express an appreciation for language and how it connects students to their heritage. Students are encouraged to use their mother tongue throughout the day to help gather their thoughts and communicate with others. Our goal is to have students to take pride in their mother tongues.
The following practices will be put into place in order to encourage appreciation for andthe further development of mother tongues:
- The school will celebrate International Mother Language Day
- Students have a choice to read in their Mother Tongue at school
- The library will have tubs of books available for checkout that reflect the mother tongues spoken in our community
- Make connections between students that are new to Hazeldale with students that have been in the community longer that speak the same language.
- Build into every unit of inquiry, time for students to share important words in their mother tongue.
- Encourage families to read in their mother tongues at home.
The world language chosen at Hazeldale is Spanish. Students receive Spanish instruction for 65 minutes every 6 days in grades K-5. World language at Hazeldale incorporates more than just the language. There is a focus on cultural understanding.The teacher focuses on a balance of Spanish speaking cultures in order for students to experience language more authentically and expose them to diversity and variety within a language. An inquiry approach is used in the Spanish classroom when both learning the language and about Spanish speaking cultures. Language teachers support reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and presenting skills. Language teacher salso support PYP essential elements, such as the learner profile. World language teachers explicitly look for opportunities to provide support within the Programme of Inquiry. This includes vocabulary, topical and conceptual connections, and inquiry strategy instruction and practice. In order to provide the best learning environment for students, world language teachers collaborate not with just teachers in the building, but also with world language teachers from across the district. Our ultimate goal is to have the whole school using Spanish as a tool for communication throughout the day in all learning environments.
Maintaining the Language Policy
The language policy will be reviewed and updated yearly by the Pedagogical Leadership Team to reflect our ever changing practice. Professional development is essential to ensuring that the practices in our language policy are upheld. There are many opportunities for professional development in regards to language at both the building, district, and beyond levels.
Building Level Professional Development:
- Learning teams twice per month
- Staff meetings twice per month
- PYP collaboration meetings weekly
- District and Beyond Professional Development
- District meetings and symposiums amongst PYP teachers
- Readers and writers workshop trainings
- Official IB trainings
Process of Creating the Language Policy:
- Staff members read IB documents: Guidelines for developing a school language policy and the Language Scope and Sequence.
- A voluntary survey was sent to staff members and parents about their beliefs about instruction in English and Spanish, and mother tongue support.
- The Pedagogical Leadership team read all information and helped to organize and create a draft.