Astor International School is proud to offer the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) for all students 5-12 years old
Our curriculum is structured around authentic, engaging and internationally relevant IPC Units of Work
Through enquiry-based teaching methods and approaches, students at Astor have the opportunity to develop their skills and knowledge while becoming lifelong learners with an open-mindedness towards the perspectives of others.
At Astor, the philosophy of teaching and learning is based on the pedagogy of enquiry and the philosophy found in the International Primary Curriculum.
Striving to be one of the top international primary schools in Singapore, we want our students to be internationally minded citizens who leave us with the knowledge, skills and attitudes that enable them to participate actively in an exciting global society and be ready for higher learning.
We value student-centred hands-on enquiry-based learning. We use worksheets to supplement our teaching, but it is not the focus.
We use manipulatives such as counters, beads, cards, pictures, whiteboards, videos etc. to design our lessons activities.
Through these student-centred hands-on enquiry-based activities students have the opportunity to develop their skills and lifelong passion for knowledge.
At Astor International School we teach using the following curriculum
International Primary Curriculum (IPC)
Singapore math is designed to allow primary students to acquire important basic numeracy as well as develop logical reasoning and problem-solving skills in the following areas:
Rate and Speed
At Astor we link our Math topics to our English and IPC lessons when possible. For example, in a Science IPC like ‘Green Fingers’ or ‘Lets Plant It’ where the theme is plants based, we grown plants and track their growth over time in our measurement and statistics lessons.
Singapore English covers speech, reading and writing skills to develop knowledge, in the following areas:
Listening and viewing
Reading and Viewing
Speaking and Representing
Writing and Representing
At Astor School over the term and year, we cover all the areas above. We take a writing genre like; recounts, narratives, procedure, or expositions and use these genres to link all our writing to reading, listening, speaking and viewing. For example, if we are coving narratives we would be reading and listening to narratives, acting out narratives etc.
International Primary Curriculum (IPC) is a comprehensive, thematic, creative curriculum with a clear process of learning and with specific learning goals for every subject, for international-mindedness and for personal learning.
IPC is set up in units with themes that cover learning areas:
Physical Education etc.
The recommended length of the unit and the length of the term will determine how many units are completed in each term. We ensure we cover History, Geography and Science equally over an academic year.
How is International Primary Curriculum structured?
International Primary Curriculum (IPC) includes over 130 thematic units and is taught in over 90 countries. It is broken down into 3 Mileposts:
5 - 7 y.o.
Pre-Primary (year 1) and Primary 1 (year 2)
7 - 9 y.o.
Primary 2 (year 3) and Primary 3 (year 4)
9 - 12 y.o.
Primary 4 (year 5), Primary 5 (year 6) and Primary 6 (year 7)
Each unit is designed around one core purpose: improving children’s learning. The units have been designed to nurture children’s personal qualities and develop international mindedness, and at the heart of these units are the IPC Learning Goals.
IPC Learning Goals
The IPC extends knowledge, skills and understanding, develops personal attributes and supports an international perspective in a way that responds to revised ideas about learning. The IPC Subject Learning Goals are the foundation on which the IPC was built. The learning goals cover the knowledge, skills and understanding that children will develop.
Knowledge is what children will know.
Skills is what children will be able to do.
Understanding is what children will understand.
The units are organized around a theme, which helps children to see how subjects are both independent and interdependent enabling them to see the big picture of their learning, make connections through and across different subjects and talk about a theme from multiple perspectives.
An IPC unit could cover the following learning areas: Art, Geography, History, Language Arts, Science, Physical Education, Technology, Music, Society and International.
At Astor we also try to link our IPC topic to our English and math learning objectives, activities and lessons.
Every IPC unit has a distinct learning process, providing a structured approach to make sure that children’s learning experiences are as stimulating and rigorous as possible.
IPC Learning Process
The Entry Point – is the WOW factor, the hook. It is desired to inspire learning through passion for the theme.
The Knowledge Harvest – is to determine what the children already know and help them to make connections with their previous learning and their real life.
Explain the Theme – this gives the children the ‘big picture’ of their learning
Researching and Recording – each IPC unit has a research activity and a recording activity. Research activities always precede the recording activities. During research activities, children use a variety of methods and work in different group sizes to find out a range of information. During the recording activities, children interpret the learning they have researched and have the opportunity to demonstrate, share and explain their learning in different ways.
Exit Point – the exit point has 2 main purposes:
1. To help children pull together their learning from the unit, and
2. To celebrate the learning that has taken place.
How do we measure improvements in learning?
It is not enough to assume that children are learning. We need some way of measuring improvements in learning. The IPC supports teachers in assessing, and children self-assessing, their progress with key skills from the IPC learning goals. IPC is assessed through the following terms, ‘beginning’, ‘developing’ and ‘mastering’, at Astor we use the same terminology for English and Math assessment.
‘I am getting used to it’
‘I am getting better’
‘I am really getting it’
From a teacher’s assessment perspective
The child can make a simple map or plan with some identifiable features in pictorial form.
The features are not in their correct relative positions.
The child independently produces a map with three or more identifiable features in correct relative positions.
Features may be shown as pictures or symbols.
The child independently produces a map with most features in the correct position relative to one another.
They use symbols rather than pictures to identify features and may include a simple key.
From a student’s self-assessment perspective
I made a map using pictures to show different places and objects. I needed some help from my teacher to put them in the right places on the map.
I'm getting used to it
I worked on my own to draw my map. I used some pictures and some symbols to show the different places and features. I know that I drew some of them in the correct place.
I'm getting better
I completed my map by myself. I used symbols to show where different places are and a key to show what the symbols mean. I drew most of them in the correct place.
I'm really getting it!
Astor’s Personal Goals
The IPC Personal Goals underpin each unit – they represent the attributes that we believe children will find essential in the 21st Century. They help children to develop those qualities that will enable them to be at ease with the continually changing context of their lives. At Astor our Personal Goals are:
Be Internationally Minded
Knowing who I am, knowing where I fit in the world and respecting all.
I think about my choices, make good decisions and do the right thing.
I try to help others and work as a team.
I change my behavior and ideas to suit different situations.
I treat people and things the way I want to be treated.
I reflect on what I have learnt and what I would like to change.
I ask why things are as they are and collect evidence to support my ideas.
I keep trying even when things are difficult.