A generation ago, choosing either the school or the education board for us, wasn’t a very difficult choice for our parents. There were fewer names and options. And curriculum wise, it was broadly just CBSE or State Board.
But over the past couple of decades, there have been multitudes of new boards that have come up, and parents like me, are genuinely confused as well as intrigued. What is right for my child? Should I go with the same age-old methodology like what I studied? Or should I look into the new ones like NIOS, IB, IGCSE and ICSE?
Among my friends’ circle, I observed a lot of parents talk about the IB curriculum and their interest towards the same. I spoke to a few moms whose children were already on the IB board and the feedback was very positive and encouraging. We also spoke to a couple of educators, parents and teachers to understand their perspective on why you must definitely consider IB for your children.
Let me break this down into multiple questions so it is easier for you to understand.
Tell Me Briefly About IB:
The International Baccalaureate (IB board) is an inquiry-led program which focuses on creating the next generation of global leaders, by developing internationally-minded students.
The IB education curriculum comprises of 4 programs:
- Primary Years Program (PYP)
- Middle Years Program (MYP)
- Diploma Program (DP)
- Career Program (CP).
The program aims to develop knowledgeable and caring life-long learners by developing the 10 learner profile attributes – Inquirers, Thinkers, Knowledgeable, Caring, Communicator, Principled, Open-minded, Risk-takers, Balanced & Reflective.
A parent whose children go to an IB school tells me that once students reach middle school, they are given the opportunity to apply the skills and concepts taught to the global community via their assignments and projects, across their subject areas. They are guided towards using a gamut of skills like creative and critical thinking, communication, research & self-management skills which help them make a difference in their local community. That essentially means that there is no pressure of faring well on written exams on one particular day, but instead through achievement levels and scales. That’s refreshing to hear!
Are IB Schools Very Expensive?
This is a common notion among parents that IB schools are more expensive than schools of other boards. From our talk with parents and educators, what we learnt is that, it’s not something that is specific to IB schools, but in general with certain schools. There is no common mandate in IB that dictates common fees across schools, but each school determines their fees based on the training provided to the teachers and the effort that goes into imbibing the curriculum to suit their children’s needs.
How Do Children Benefit From An IB School?
The IB curriculum focuses on:
- Global perspective
- Critical thinking
- Experiential learning
- Holistic approach
In today’s education scenario that’s constantly evolving with time, we need to prepare our kids to work on skills that will help them land their dream job in the future, where a lot would have changed. Most of the jobs that we do today, wouldn’t even exist in the future and a whole new world of careers would be emerging. With IB schools that focus around the development of critical thinking skills, global awareness, and interdisciplinary learning, it helps students prepare for a rapidly changing and complex world.
Why You Need To Consider The IBDP For Your Teens:
The IBDP which is the 2-year IB Diploma Programme for children between 16-19 years, helps provide a globally-recognised qualification for entry into some of the best universities across the world. The IBDP requires students to take up courses and pass exams in six subject areas. Three or four of these IB diploma subjects can be taken by the student at the challenging “Higher” level, while the remaining subjects can be taken at the “Standard” level.
Getting the IBDP not only helps them hone their critical thinking skills but also looks great on your child’s resume that will help them land in better universities, with scholarships. This way they are better equipped to face the future.
Creating The Right Learning Environment For Children:
When we think of learning and choosing the right education board, we often attribute it to the older children, unaware of the fact that moulding them right, starts from the preschooler phase. Did you know?
The average Indian child spends more than 800 hours per year in primary years! How are we, as parents and educators, making sure that the children are actually learning and deriving value from the time they spend in school?
When Mansi Zaveri, Founder of Kidsstoppress.com, visited the JBCN International School in Parel, Mumbai, she could identify why children and parents prefer the IB curriculum and how it helps today’s children.
Researchers have often stressed the importance of stimulating our young children’s minds to the right learning environment that fosters their creativity and imagination.
Right from creating engaging learning zones to ensuring learning is no longer done the theoretical way, children fully understand what they see by combining fun with learning, the JBCN International school has left no stone unturned in its efforts to create a holistic learning environment for children, especially in their pre-primary years.
To summarise, if you are looking for a curriculum that focuses more on the well-rounded development of your child, you must consider IB. The world is moving away from marks and grades, and the sooner we (and our kids) realise this and adjust to it, the better it prepares our children for a future that is laden with uncertainties, yet infinite possibilities.
This post is written in association with JBCN International School.