Primary Years - Grades 2 to 5
In Grades 2 -5 in the Lower School, our students are engaged in learning that inspires them to want to investigate further, to understand more fully, to apply learning and to become enthusiastic and active participants in learning in all its forms.
Our students come together from a diversity of cultures, nationalities, experiences, understandings, linguistic backgrounds and identities. We aim to use a global perspective as our context for learning, engaging our students in reflection on their place, role and responsibility as participants within this diverse environment both within and outside of school.
These skills are developed throughout the Lower School and woven into all areas of the curriculum, providing students with opportunities to apply them, regardless of the subject. All teachers and staff members, regardless of grade level, subject areas or role in the Lower School are responsible for the development of these skills.
Social – accepting responsibility, respecting others, cooperating, resolving conflict, group decision making, adopting a variety of group roles
Inquiry/ Critical Thinking – questioning, exploring concepts, creatively approaching complex problems, acquiring knowledge, researching, applying, analysing, synthesising, evaluating, reflecting and taking action
Self-Management- demonstrating gross motor, fine motor, spatial awareness, organization, time management, safety, healthy lifestyle, making informed choices
The International School of Luxembourg strives to ensure that its students acquire the knowledge, skills, attributes and dispositions to become:
- Read, write, speak and listen confidently and reflectively in two or more languages.
- Create, present and perform for a variety of purposes and audiences
- Interpret and respond to many different forms of communication
- Ask questions appropriately
Proactive in a wide range of situations:
- Make choices in order to adjust to different roles, environments and tasks
- Display confidence, perseverance, resilience and creativity in pursuit of personal and academic goals
- Demonstrate initiative and take appropriate risks
- Seek and consider a range of viewpoints and beliefs and display acceptance for diversity
- Demonstrate a desire to understand why things are the way they are and to consider possibilities and alternatives
- Use thinking processes that are analytical, strategic, reflective and/or critical in order to inform and take further action
Creative and Innovative:
- Be naturally curious
- Generate and develop ideas
- Explore and discover solutions creatively
- Be inspired and be inspirational
- Demonstrate originality and inventiveness
- Use failure as an opportunity to learn
Responsible for their own learning and well-being:
- Establish priorities, set worthy personal and academic goals and use time and resources productively
- Work toward solutions both independently and collaboratively
- Strive to meet academic standards and make use of self-evaluation
- Use personal, school and community resources effectively
- Use learning as a vehicle for self-discovery
- Strive to lead a healthy, well-balanced life
Contributors to the world:
- Display care, empathy and consideration for others
- Become informed citizens who understand and can participate effectively in the political process
- Exhibit multi-cultural and global awareness as well as social consciousness
- Contribute time, energy and talent to improve the quality of life in our school and communities
- Embody integrity and practise responsible behavior
- Develop an active concern for the natural environment and our role as caretakers of this for present and future generations
- Recognise injustice on a local and global scale and contribute to actions that promote justice and compassion
- Promote the value of conflict resolution, reconciliation and peace building
- Promote “Universal respect for and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms” [United Nations Declaration of Rights, 1948]
Our goal is to enable students to become skilled and confident oral, written and visual communicators and imaginative, productive and empathetic members of a changing, information-rich global society.
At ISL Students will:
- Understand and use the power of language and literature to inspire, inform, persuade, evoke and entertain, for the benefit of themselves and others
- Develop the capacity to examine ideas and arguments critically and to respond to them in a clear and increasingly sophisticated manner
- Use language as one of the essential tools for creative expression
- Recognise and work with a wide variety of texts and media; understanding function, content and purpose
- Develop awareness of different cultural contexts and experiences, and of the capacity of language to reflect and explore these
- Develop the proficiency in English necessary to achieve success across the curriculum
In the Lower School, students are provided with the opportunity to build skills, understanding and knowledge of reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing and media literacy as well as opportunities to create, construct and communicate meaning in a variety of different forms. Students build understanding through application of the skills they learn through all areas of the curriculum.
It is the goal of the International School of Luxembourg to equip each student with the skills, knowledge, and understanding of Mathematics and to see the importance of Mathematics in the real world. We seek to teach the fundamental concepts of Mathematics as well as the critical thinking skills necessary to use that knowledge wisely. AT ISL, we believe that
- Mathematics is accessible to all students
- Students learn in a variety of ways necessitating experience with a range of instructional strategies
- Students learn more effectively when they communicate and explain their mathematical thinking and understanding verbally, in writing, through diagrams and practical demonstrations
- The development of Mathematical ability involves the learning of procedural skills, reasoning, understanding and problem solving, with an emphasis on real world situations
- Students learn through questioning, exploration and investigation of mathematical concepts using a range of strategies
Our Preschool to Grade 12 programme recognises the following as key instructional practices in teaching Mathematics:
- Teachers challenge students to continually develop and demonstrate their understanding
- Teachers develop student understanding when they move from the concrete to the abstract using a wide range of manipulative and visual materials
- Teachers enhance knowledge by providing regular practice of key concepts and skills, including mental mathematical skills
- Teachers provide a consistent mathematical vocabulary that recognises the universal nature of mathematics. Teachers give students opportunities in mathematics to develop and use language widely in classroom activities
- Teachers integrate appropriate use of technology
- Teachers provide a wide variety of assessment experiences to measure and improve student understanding
In the Lower School, our mathematics programme is based on The Cambridge Mathematics Curriculum Framework.
In the Lower School, our units of learning aim to develop breadth depth and insight into key concepts, developed from the Mission Statement, that lead to lasting understanding and the application of knowledge and skills.
The seven key concepts in Lower School are:
These units require students to ask questions, investigate, communicate and present their findings, work collaboratively, solve problems, make decisions, apply thinking skills at a variety of levels, respond creatively, use technology, demonstrate flexibility, adaptability, initiative, self-direction and responsibility.
Whilst many of our units begin with science or social studies concepts, the knowledge, skills and understandings that many other learning areas bring to these units naturally integrate into the learning. These areas can also include literacy, mathematics, art, music, PE, health and scientific inquiry.
See below and click here for the Lower School Units of Learning plan.
At ISL, students communicate thought and experience through the acquisition of languages in a multilingual, multicultural community. Students learn languages in a safe and caring environment supported by a relevant and challenging learning programme. Acquiring other languages develops transferable skills that enable students to become life-long learners.
The key objectives of the ISL Language Acquisition Programme are to:
- Use target languages as a tool for communicating in a variety of authentic settings
- Develop insights into languages, leading to greater understand of self and other cultures
The Lower School French programme (K1 – Grade 5) provides opportunities for children to develop basic communication skills as they learn to appreciate other languages and cultures. We respect the developmental aspects of the child by concentrating on oral and aural competency in the early years and introducing reading and writing as first-language literacy becomes established. We believe that a developmentally sound approach to language learning will ensure that our students attain competence and confidence in their ability to communicate in French.
Students participate in a variety of activities that support different learning styles and rates. These might include role-playing, “Total Physical Response”, rhymes, songs, games, reading stories or factual texts, filming, recording, dictations, puzzles, projects, videos, computer-based learning or interactive white board lessons. Many of these same techniques are also used to assess student progress in the skill areas of speaking and listening, reading, writing, research skills and cultural development.
French instruction begins in K1. Students are assigned to groups on the basis of previous language experience, recommendation of the previous French teacher, student numbers, and placement testing of new arrivals. Although ours is a foreign language programme, we do our best to accommodate native speakers.
At ISL we believe the Arts positively stimulate, inform and empower human development. Engagement in the Arts promotes creativity, self-expression, self-discipline, problem-solving, social interaction and an understanding of the human condition. We aim to inspire all students to develop their artistic literacies in positive learning environments through exploration, application, analysis and critical reflection. We encourage a lifelong appreciation for the relevance of the Arts in our lives.
Art is an integral part of the Lower School curriculum. Within our programme Lower School students are encouraged to experiment with a variety of media, techniques and processes in order to learn skills for self-realisation through visual expression. The art program leads increasingly to an interdisciplinary study where inquiry in art is woven, when applicable, into the class Units of Learning. Our art programme aims to develop visual awareness and creative expression providing the students with an opportunity to talk and write about art in the manner of artists, art critics and art historians. Creativity and skills development are at the heart of our programme. Students learn to coordinate their hands and minds in explorations of the visual world as well as to evaluate the merits of their efforts. They learn to make choices that enhance communication of their ideas. Their natural inquisitiveness is promoted, also the value of perseverance. Students are further encouraged to express their sense of joy and their continued desire to learn as they make and share their works of art with others. Students from grade one to grade five attend art classes taught by specialist teachers. Art is integrated into the Early Years Program by the classroom teachers.
From as early as Preschool, Lower School Students participate in regular music classes. All students are encouraged to sing, dance, improvise and perform through a sequential music curriculum. Students participate in concerts, musicals and other performances at least twice during the school year. Students begin to learn the recorder in Grade 2, learning to read music in preparation for the Beginner Band Programme which the students can opt to take part in from Grade 4. Creative intelligence is developed through projects and compositions.
Physical Education (PE) is an integral part of a student’s education. It makes a great contribution to the health, growth and physical development of the student by teaching skills and concepts for everyday living. Through specific activities, individual, team and life sports PE assists students in developing physical qualities, motor skills and health related fitness.
In Preschool through to Grade 2, students have the opportunity to explore basic body actions to help them understand their body’s movements. They are introduced to social games to extend their vocabulary and practice control and coordination of their body.
In Grades 3-5, students have the opportunity to participate in a mix of activities that develop gross motor skills in; striking and fielding, net games, invasion games and life skills. The Physical Education programme aims to encourage students to become lifelong physically educated learners. Swimming lesson within the PE classes are provided for students in Grades 3-5.