Learning environments

The school environment needs to have a range of clearly defined areas to encourage inquiry, investigation, exploration and play, both in and out of doors. These may include spaces for reading, writing, art, construction, imaginative play and science, with a wide variety of appropriate resources in each. Particularly for young students, interactions in and with these spaces stimulate them to become active learners. They need extended periods of time and as much space as possible to explore, investigate and play with a variety of materials in order to learn about themselves, other people and the world around them. Teachers should structure dynamic learning environments to provide ongoing opportunities for students to develop planned and spontaneous inquiries by:

  • making choices and decisions
  • using materials in flexible and imaginative ways
  • initiating inquiry and asking questions
  • working collaboratively with others
  • sustaining their interests and extending their knowledge
  • developing understanding.

Source: Making the PYP happen: A curriculum framework for international primary education (2009)

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