Conceptual Learning

​Key Concepts 

The MYP curriculum is grounded in concept-based instruction and learning, helping students become critical thinkers and creative problem solvers. Instead of only teaching students subject specific knowledge, teachers help students see larger concepts, or big ideas, that transcend a subject and might be applicable in more than one subject, such as in the examples below.
Covering both subject-specific topics while connecting them to larger concepts helps students retain the important real world ideas they will need in the future, as well as make connections between what they are learning in different classes. To this end, the MYP focuses on sixteen overarching Key Concepts that students focus on over the course of the year through their different and use as a way to begin their inquiry into a given unit focus. “These concepts are not only “key” in the sense of being important; they also provide a key—a way into a body of knowledge through structured and sustained inquiry” (MYP From Principles to Practice).  They also help foster students’ ability to transfer ideas and skills from one subject to another.
  • Aesthetics  – deals with the characteristics, creation, meaning and perception of beauty and taste. The study of aesthetics develops skills for the critical appreciation and analysis of art, culture and nature.
  • Change – is a conversion, transformation or movement from one form, state or value to another. Inquiry into the concept of change involves understanding and evaluating causes, processes and consequences.
  • Communication – is the exchange or transfer of signals, facts, ideas and symbols. It requires a sender, a message and an intended receiver. Communication involves the activity of conveying information or meaning. Effective communication requires a common “language” (which may be written, spoken or non-verbal).
  • Communities –  are groups that exist in proximity defined by space, time or relationship. Communities include, for example, groups of people sharing particular characteristics, beliefs or values as well as groups of interdependent organisms living together in a specific habitat.
  • Connections  – are links, bonds and relationships among people, objects, organisms or ideas.
  • Creativity – is the process of generating novel ideas and considering existing ideas from new perspectives. Creativity includes the ability to recognize the value of ideas when developing innovative responses to problems; it may be evident in process as well as outcomes, products or solutions.
  • Culture  – encompasses a range of learned and shared beliefs, values, interests, attitudes, products, ways of knowing and patterns of behaviour created by human communities. The concept of culture is dynamic and organic.
  • Development – is the act or process of growth, progress or evolution, sometimes through iterative improvements.
  • Form –  is the shape and underlying structure of an entity or piece of work, including its organization, essential nature and external appearance.
  • Global interactions –  as a concept, focuses on the connections among individuals and communities, as well as their relationships with built and natural environments, from the perspective of the world as a whole.
  • Identity – is the state or fact of being the same. It refers to the particular features that define individuals, groups, things, eras, places, symbols and styles. Identity can be observed, or it can be constructed, asserted and shaped by external and internal influences.
  • Logic – is a method of reasoning and a system of principles used to build arguments and reach conclusions.
  • Perspective – is the position from which we observe situations, objects, facts, ideas and opinions. Perspective may be associated with individuals, groups, cultures or disciplines. Different perspectives often lead to multiple representations and interpretations.
  • Relationships – are the connections and associations between properties, objects, people and ideas—including the human community’s connections with the world in which we live. Any change in relationship brings consequences—some of which may occur on a small scale, while others may be far-reaching, affecting large networks and systems such as human societies and the planetary ecosystem.
  • Systems – are sets of interacting or interdependent components. Systems provide structure and order in human, natural and built environments. Systems can be static or dynamic, simple or complex.
  •  Time, place and space  – refers to the absolute or relative position of people, objects and ideas. Time, place and space focuses on how we construct and use our understanding of location (“where” and “when”).

​Related Concepts 

Related Concepts are subject-specific ideas that are concepts that will be important each year of a student’s study. Teachers select one or more related concepts per unit to extend learning, develop deeper understanding, and create different perspectives on the larger key concept. Below are links to each of the subject’s related concepts: Language and Literature (ELA) Language Acquisition (World Language) Individuals in Society (Social Studies) Mathematics Sciences Physical and Health Education Design Arts ( performing and visual)