Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Can TAB and PYP co-exist? I'm about to find out!

I've had my eye on TAB for a few years now and slowly adjusting my teaching to amp up student Voice and Choice while still staying true to the PYP.  With the support of my PYP Coordinator and my amazing Pedagogical Coordinator Andy Vasily, I've decided to jump in with both feet this year. I will be adjusting my already conceptually based units and letting the learners decide how they will demonstrate their understanding in a studio that respects them as artists and the drivers of their own learning.  I am very excited and also very nervous, but I wholeheartedly believe that I am doing the right thing.  More concrete examples to come, Grade 5's will begin with a unit on Identity.  Are there any other PYP Art teachers who also use the TAB/Choice model?  Please do get in touch.

Right now in addition to gathering material for my Studio Centers, I am working on creating visuals for a "Nuts and Bolts" wall-- general procedures, types of Studio Learning (thanks to Ron Ritchhart I am training myself not to use the word "work"), design cycle, etc.  Here are some highlights, created on canva.com:

Stay tuned for more as my students and I embark on our TAB/PYP journey starting next week...


  1. Hello! I work in a PYP school and am very interested in moving to a TAB model. Thanks for sharing your journey.

  2. Hi there, I too have looked into TAB and teach IB. I gave it a go last term with year 5 & 6 (9-11 yr olds). I too was really nervous but it worked out way better than I expected. And best of all, the kids loved it so much as they have a really strong sense of ownership of their work. Go for it!

  3. I am a TAB teacher just starting in a PYP program, Pre K - 2. How do you organize your POIs? Plan of Inquiry. Just learning these new acronyms! It's been suggested to just do "How do I Express Myself?" or plan around the key concepts. What do you do?

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  5. Thanks for your positive comments, I am very much looking forward to the journey and to hear about others' experiences. Please if you have a blog let me know so I can follow you.

    To "Unknown" I am planning on using two concepts to guide the inquiries--concept will be focused on the the visual arts (likely elements/principles) and the other will be a broader concept. For example: G3's will be learning about scale and the representation of the human figure. G4's will start with pattern and well being through the arts. G5's self portraiture and self expression. There is a great post on Art of Ed that digs into creating plans but also honoring choice: https://www.theartofed.com/2014/07/16/yes-you-can-write-a-tab-lesson-plan/

    For your little ones, I think organizing around questions like "How Do I Express Myself?" is perfect. Wouldn't it be amazing to have the music/drama teacher do the same unit so the children get a deep understanding of answering that question across disciplines?