Bilkent Erzurum Laboratory School is a candidate school* for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme and pursuing authorization as an IB World School. IB World Schools share a common philosophy—a commitment to improve the teaching and learning of a diverse and inclusive community of students by delivering challenging, high quality programmes of international education that share a powerful vision.**
* Only schools authorized by the IB Organization can offer any of its four academic programmes: the Primary Years Programme (PYP), the Middle Years Programme (MYP), the Diploma Programme (DP), or the Career-related Programme (CP). Candidate status gives no guarantee that authorization will be granted.
The PYP offers an inquiry-based, transdisciplinary curriculum framework that builds conceptual understanding. It is a student-centered approach to education for children aged 3-12. It reflects the best of educational research, thought leadership and experience derived from IB World Schools.
The PYP has evolved to become a world leader in future-focused education. The PYP is an example of best educational practice globally, responding to the challenges and opportunities facing young students in our rapidly changing world.
Our English programme is unique to each grade, but follows consistent themes. Our native language teachers work hard to develop children’s spoken language, vocabulary, reading and writing skills using a number of different programmes, and a mix of traditional and modern methods and skills.
We encourage all of our English learners to speak clearly, and to listen carefully to their teachers as we speak. We practice pronunciation, and the children are exposed to as many different accents (e.g British, American) as possible through the use of audio in the classroom. As they move through the grades the children become more confident at giving descriptions and explanations, speculating and exploring ideas, and expressing their opinions. Vocabulary acquisition is essential from the very beginning of school, so our teachers have different ways of introducing new vocabulary into the classroom, and helping our children to learn it.
Our teachers see reading as an essential skill that is a primary building block for fluent and confident writing. We encourage children to read for pleasure both in school and at home, and we do everything we can to promote wider reading. Each classroom has its own library of English language books, and higher grades have weekly visits to the school library.
Our children love writing, and so we have extensive displays of their work. From Grade 1 our teachers encourage the children to write the words they know, forming sentences and using great descriptions. These skills are developed and refined in Grades 2 & 3, and by Grade 4 our children can produce extended pieces of writing. In every grade our children are confident enough to try new vocabulary, grammar and styles of writing, and the exciting programmes that we use encourage this in every grade.
Here at BELS our Elementary School Maths programme challenges our children to push their limits, think deeply, and work together to solve problems. Children learn in different ways, and our Elementary school teachers focus on teaching in a multitude of different learning styles to fit the needs and abilities of all our children.
From Grade 1 to Grade 4, our Elementary teachers work hard to develop understanding: from basic number sense and counting, all the way to multiplying/dividing large numbers and understanding properties of geometry. As our children move through the grades they become fluent users of the language of Mathematics, as they learn to understand its meanings, symbols and conventions. Our teachers focus on helping children succeed in the Turkish language, but we also make sure there are opportunities to learn the same topics in English.
We believe that Maths teaches children of all ages, abilities, and languages the skills that are essential to think critically, communicate effectively, and accomplish real-world tasks, and these are our expectations for all of our BELS Elementary children.
The aim of Social Studies lessons at BELS Elementary is to promote civic awareness, so that our children can be active and engaged in public life. Our aim is that our children will be active members of a global community, able to contribute by sustaining and improving the world around us.
In our Elementary school, not only do our children learn about the people around them, but they also work hard to learn about themselves. Our children gain an understanding of their own identity, beliefs, aspirations, and pleasures, and they learn how to express themselves confidently. Our teachers inspire our children to use their knowledge about their community, their nation, and the world. We encourage the development of children’s collaborative, decision- making, and problem-solving s kills.
PE, ART, DRAMA, MUSIC
At BELS Elementary school we take a holistic approach to wellness and well-being. We pride ourselves on creating healthy, happy children with good habits that they will carry over into adulthood. We recognise that it is essential to teach each child as a whole. We know that in order for a student to learn best, a school’s curriculum must acknowledge children’s multiple intelligences. Because of this, we have a strong Elementary school PE, drama, art and music programme with inspirational teachers who encourage each of our children to be the best they can.
The goal of the each of these programmes at Elementary level is for students to experience and enjoy the subjects and gain some basic understanding of all the aspects of the subject.
For example, in Music our children start by learning to move to a steady beat in the earlier grades, through playing instruments and singing, to creating (composing, arranging, and improvisation) and responding in the higher grades.
Our P.E.programme is designed to be inclusive, active and fun, helping childrenenjoy physical activity and develop a lifetime commitment to wellness. Our teachers encourageeach child to develop a variety of movement skills and teamwork capabilities so all children feel comfortable and confident.
In Drama, our children work on a variety of activities appropriate to their age level, including game play, acting out scenes, and improvising. Our Elementary teachers work hard to create social and emotional awareness within our children. We focus onhelping students to develop empathy and to understand their own feelings, as well as the feelings of others.
And in Art, we encourage our children to explore: to try different materials, find inspiration from different sources, and use their own imaginations. In our classes we believe that every child is an artist and every artist is individual. Our Elementary teachers introduce our children to a wide range of techniques and materials, and different artists and schools of art throughout history.
We encourage a collaborative learning environment where ideas are shared, and where every child is confident in sharing their opinion, and we focus on the development of artistic behaviors, such as problem solving and decision making. In art, our teachers inspire our children to experiment, in well-stocked studios where choices are plentiful and self- directed learning is nurtured and encouraged.