We break down everything you need to know about the International Primary (IPC) Curriculum plus we shortlist a list of IPC schools in Singapore
Want to know more about the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) and its benefits? We explain the meaning of the IPC curriculum, how it can benefit your child, and we shortlist several IPC schools in Singapore for your consideration. Keep scrolling to weigh all your options!
What is the meaning of IPC?
The International Primary Curriculum is a comprehensive curriculum based on the English National Curriculum adapted for international schools, with reference to the IB inquiry-based approach to learning. The IPC is usually implemented for 5 to 11-year-olds, with a creative, thematic approach to teaching and encourages students to research and ask questions. Students are usually assessed in subjects such as Art, Geography, History, Computing, Music, Physical Education, Science, Technology and International.
What’s different about the IPC curriculum?
The thoughtfully designed IPC has many benefits, including comprehensive learning and parental involvement. The IPC curriculum is flexible, and can be adapted to your child’s level of understanding and interests. Additionally, it encourages collaboration and reflection and can be integrated with other curricula to ensure your child’s learning needs are met.
Where to find IPC schools in Singapore
Considering enrolling your child in an IPC school in Singapore? Keep scrolling to find out how the international schools below incorporate this curriculum for their students to get the best performance out of each child.
St. Joseph’s Institution International Elementary School
At this IPC school in Singapore, students from Prep 1 to Grade 6 will follow the IPC curriculum. The IPC Early Years programme provide young learners in Grade 1 the opportunity for a range of flexible learning activities to inspire creativity, curiosity and the development of foundation skills and knowledge. Students in Grades 2 and 3 are introduced to multiple perspectives and are challenged to begin forming their own conclusions, based on accurate research and guided analysis. Grade 4 students develop the independent skills required for conducting their own research, while Upper Elementary students are inspired by units that delve into topical issues, global concerns and moral implications. They are taught to challenge ideas and perspectives and work collaboratively with others. Grade 6 classes transition from the IPC thematic approach, to learning within discrete subjects in the areas of Science and Humanities. Students learn under the MOE Singapore Mathematics syllabus, while the Language Arts curriculum incorporates programmes from the UK and the Workshop approach from the United States. Humanities and Science follow the IPC curriculum. SJII also uses use a range of assessment tools, from standardised testing and observations and the PASS (Pupil Attitude to Self and School) survey, to end-of-unit reviews, progress and cognitive ability tests as well as specialist assessment rubrics – all of which allow students to confidently lead and share their learning, reflect and identify where they need to improve and be empowered to demonstrate their growing knowledge, skills and understanding.
St. Joseph’s Institution International Elementary School, 490 Thomson Road, Singapore 298191, www.sji-international.com.sg
Astor International School
The IPC curriculum at Astor International School (rebranded from Razum International School) covers units of learning such as Science, History, Geography, Music, Drama and more, with the recommended length of the unit and the term determining how many units are completed in each term. Through inquiry-based teaching methods and approaches, students aged 5 to 12 have the opportunity to develop their skills and knowledge while becoming lifelong learners with open-mindedness towards the perspectives of others. What’s most interesting about the curriculum here is the interactive hands-on activities that are included. The activities cater for all types of learners and give all students an opportunity to go deep into a topic. There is also no standardised assessment at this IPC school in Singapore. Instead, assessments are completed at the beginning of and throughout the term. There are two formal reports given at the end of Term 2 and Term 4. The IPC supports teachers in assessing, and children self-assessing, their progress with key skills from the IPC learning goals. IPC is assessed through the following terms: ‘beginning’, ‘developing’ and ‘mastering’, and Astor International School uses the same terminology for English and Math assessment. Astor also integrates the IPC curriculum with Singapore Math and English.
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Astor International School, 1 Kay Siang Road, #05-01/02, Singapore 248922, Tel: (+65) 69745700, www.astor.edu.sg
The Grange Institution
The IPC curriculum here engages learners in different thematic units, allowing learners from the ages of 7 to 12 to understand how subjects such as Art, Geography, Society, Technology and Language are both independent and interdependent. This allows them to make connections across different subjects from multiple perspectives. The Grange is one of the few schools in Singapore that has all specialist subjects built into the curriculum and the fees for a truly holistic learning experience. This IPC school in Singapore integrates the IPC curriculum with the Cambridge Primary Curriculum, and was one of the first schools in Singapore to do so in 2018. When combined, the two curriculums encompass electives that provide students with essential knowledge in addition to the core subjects. The flexibility of the IPC curriculum means The Grange Institution is allowed to select the units that synergise best with their vision of a future-focused education. As such, the school can apply the best of progressive pedagogy and have access to quality resources, while still retaining its identity. Students are assessed using formative and summative assessment techniques, and both students are teachers are actively involved in these. At the core of IPC is the school’s future-focused ‘Cre8tors-in-Action’ philosophy, aimed at equipping young learners with what it believes to be eight core competencies that are universally transferable. Additionally, the Grange’s award-winning Green Granger initiative brings in nature-inspired learning with the aim of helping students develop a strong awareness of sustainability and current global issues such as climate change.
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The Grange Institution, 449 Yio Chu Kang Road, Singapore 805946, www.thegrange.edu.sg
Invictus International School
Invictus Dempsey offers the International Primary Curriculum from Year 1 to Grade 6 (ages 5 to 11) and uses it for its flexibility. This IPC school in Singapore adapts it to children’s interests and level of understanding and integrates it with other curricula to ensure students are meeting statutory requirements in a creative and engaging way. Assessment is done by teachers and children to help engage them with learning, and understand their level of skills and knowledge. At Invictus Dempsey, the IPC is supplemented with the Singapore Mathematics method of instruction. This world-renowned method – used until the IGCSE curriculum in Year 10 – serves to further accelerate the development of students’ skills in mathematics, ensuring that they are well-positioned for challenges in the future. From 2022 to 2023, Invictus Dempsey will continue to deliver the IPC to every grade while teaching English and Science from the Cambridge curriculum alongside Singapore Mathematics. However, as part of the transition to Cambridge, Grade 1 Prep will be starting the Cambridge curriculum in all areas except Mathematics. From 2023 to 2024, the Cambridge curriculum will be fully implemented, again excluding mathematics that remains as Singapore mathematics.
Invictus International School, www.invictus.edu.sg
Dempsey Campus: Dempsey Hills, 73 Loewen Road, Singapore 248843, Tel: 6259 3877 |
Centrium Campus: Centrium Square, 320 Serangoon Road, Level 6, Singapore 218108, Tel: 6970 2908,
Middleton International School
From Grades 1 to 5 (ages 7 to 11), Middleton International School uses the inquiry-based International Primary Curriculum (IPC), aligned with the UK National Curriculum for English and the globally recognised Singapore Maths. At the start of each unit, there is an Entry Point activity to introduce and capture the interests of the children so that they are motivated and eager to learn. Throughout the learning process, the teachers will plan learning engagements based on students’ interests and questions to help them develop their understanding across different curriculum areas. Learners are engaged in a Research, Record and Reflect loop designed to extend knowledge, build skills, deepen understanding and develop metacognitive thinking. They use various methods to do research and are empowered to ask questions, find answers, and initiate their own learning. At the end of the unit, students will complete an Exit Point project. Formative assessments are regularly used as a reflective tool to help scaffold learning. The teachers use strategies and tools such as regular observations, documentation and analyses of learning journeys through discussions, projects, classroom work, and standardised tests to gather information about students’ learning. Learning is an active process where learners co-construct the units of inquiry together with their teachers and are enthusiastic about learning. In Grades 6 to 8, students will continue with the International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC), designed to link the in-depth knowledge, skills, and understanding picked up in the IPC to the Cambridge IGCSE subjects undertaken in Grades 9 and 10.
Middleton International School, multiple locations, www.middleton.edu.sg
Sir Manasseh Meyer International School (SMMIS)
SMMIS teaches through the enquiry-based International Primary Curriculum for Kindergarten 2 to Grade 5, and continues with the International Middle Years Programme (IMYC) before offering the Cambridge IGCSE qualifications in Grades 9 and 10. The IPC and IMYC are both incredibly versatile and adaptable curricula, which SMMIS blends with British National Curriculum Literacy and Singapore Mathematics. IPC covers the sciences, social studies, history and geography, while centred on an engaging big theme so that students learn these subjects and related skills through building strong connections between disciplines. SMMIS connects and integrates literacy, numeracy, art, music, technology and PE within each IPC unit. Students develop not only academic knowledge and understanding but also develop their character through the eight integrated IPC personal goals: Enquiry, Resilience, Morality, Communication, Thoughtfulness, Cooperation, Respect and Adaptability. Each grade covers four themed IPC units per academic year, such as “Saving the World” in which they explore the world’s rainforests and deforestation. Learning is fun at this IPC school in Singapore – there’s even an IPC unit on Chocolate, which includes researching the history of the cacao bean, the geography and climate of where it is grown, as well as students making their own chocolate, visiting a chocolate factory and tasting chocolate too!
Sir Manasseh Meyer International School, 3 Jalan Ulu Sembawang, Singapore 758932, Tel: (+65) 6331 4633, www.smmis.edu.sg
Other IPC schools in Singapore that offer the International Primary Curriculum
– The Winstedt School
– Dynamics International School
– Hollandse School
– Knightsbridge House International School (Sentosa)
– Overseas Family School
Want to know more about education in Singapore? We’ve got you covered with these informative reads.