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Transdisciplinary Themes

Transdisciplinary Themes

At the heart of the PYP is a commitment to structured inquiry as a vehicle for learning. According to Nancy Cecil in The Art of Inquiry, "When children see to ask or answer questions about things for which there are many potentially correct answers, they begin to develop an attitude of appreciation for the immensity and complexity of the natural world." Teachers at each grade level develop units of study that center around the six transdisciplinary themes.

Six Themes:

These themes help guide teachers as they plan and design transdisciplinary (combining two or more subject areas) units of inquiry which make up the Program of Inquiry. Within these units, children are encouraged to ask questions, are taught how to use a variety of resources to seek answers and led to a deeper understanding of the topic being studied. The PYP seeks to create students who are not bounded by the physical borders of their community. Instead it works to study broad topics that can have an application in any part of our world.

Who We Are

An inquiry into the nature of self; beliefs and values; personal, physical, mental, social, and spiritual health; human relationships including families, friends, communities, and cultures; rights and responsibilities; what it means to be human.

Sharing the Planet

An inquiry into our rights and responsibilities in the struggle to share finite resources with other people and with other living things; communities and of the relationships within and between them; access to equal opportunities; peace and conflict resolution.

Where We Are in Place and Time

An inquiry into orientation in place and time; personal histories; homes and journeys; the discoveries, explorations and migrations of humankind; the relationships between and the interconnectedness of individuals and civilizations, from local to global perspectives

How We Organize Ourselves 

An inquiry into the interconnectedness human-made systems and communities; the structure and function of organizations; societal decision-making; economic activities and their impact on humankind and the environment.

How We Express Ourselves

An inquiry into the ways in which we discover and express ideas, feelings nature, culture, beliefs and values; the ways in which we reflect on, extend and enjoy our creativity; our appreciation of the esthetic.

How the World Works

An inquiry into the natural world and its laws; the interaction between the natural world (physical and biological) and human sciences; how humans use their understanding of scientific principles; the impact of scientific and technological advances on society and the environment.


Un cuestionamiento dentro de la naturaleza del ser; sus creencias y valores; salud personal, física, mental, social y espiritual; las relaciones humanas incluyendo familias, amigos, comunidades y culturas; derechos y responsabilidades; que es lo que significa ser un humano.


Un cuestionamiento dentro de nuestros derechos y responsabilidades en la lucha por compartir los recursos finitos (limitados) con otras gentes y con otras cosas vivas; las comunidades y las relaciones dentro y entre ellos, el acceso a iguales oportunidades; resolución de paz y conflicto.


Un cuestionamiento dentro del lugar y del tiempo; historias personales; casas y jornadas; descubrimientos, exploraciones y migraciones del género humano; las relaciones interconectadas entre los individuos y las civilizaciones, de las perspectivas locales y globales.


Un cuestionamiento de las interconexiones de los sistemas y comunidades de origen humano; la estructura y función de las organizaciones; tomar decisiones sociales; actividades económicas y su impacto en el género humano y en el ambiente.


Un cuestionamiento dentro de las maneras en las cuales nosotros descubrimos y expresamos las ideas, sentimientos naturales, cultura, creencias y valores; las maneras en las cuales nosotros nos reflejamos, nos extendemos y disfrutamos de nuestra creatividad; nuestra apreciación de la estética.


Un cuestionamiento dentro del mundo natural y de sus leyes; la interacción entre el mundo natural (físico y biológico), y las ciencias humanas; como los humanos usan su entendimiento de principios científicos; el impacto de los avances científicos y tecnológicos en la sociedad y en el ambiente.


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