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What Does Transdisciplinary Mean?


Inquiring Minds Want to Know: What does "Transdisciplinary" Mean?


Transdisciplinary is the word that IB uses to describe a concept that is interconnected and can be applied across all subjects and to real life. Within the Primary Years Program of the International Baccalaureate, six transdisciplinary themes provide the framework for exploration and construction of knowledge. Teachers are guided by these transdisiplinary themes as they design units of inquiry for exploration and study. Within these units of inquiry, students develop an understanding of important concepts, acquire essential skills and knowledge, develop particular attitudes and learn to take socially responsible action. Our units of inquiry can be found on the Childs School webpage.  Click on Academics, then click on Childs plan of inquiry, and then the specific grade level.


The six transdisciplinary themes within the PYP are:



Who we are

An inquiry into the nature of the 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.



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 and global perspectives.



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 aesthetic.



How the world works

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



How we organize ourselves

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



Sharing the planet

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



Kris Stewart, IB Coordinator