When a kindergartner comes home with a working knowledge of photosynthesis, parents and teachers notice. “That was the clincher,” says Tiffany Adamski, Interim Principal at Central Academy of Ohio. The photosynthesis unit had been part of the pilot program for the International Baccalaureate (IB), a comprehensive, collaborative, whole-child approach to teaching and learning. When the 5 year old kindergartner’s mom reported her astonishment at her child’s understanding of such a complex process, teachers started to feel confident that the IB was right for Central.
Getting the IB program designation is hard work. “There’s a rigorous application process, and then you spend about a year as a school of interest,” says Adamski. “In that time, school personnel really dive into the inner workings of the current programming in order to decide whether there’s a good fit with the IB.” Central now enters the 1-2 year candidacy stage, when a consultant from the IB will help develop and fully implement the program school wide. “There are only nine IB Primary Year Programs in the state, and we are on our way to being number ten,” says Adamski. So far, there’s a lot of excitement. “After the first level of IB training, our teachers came back with amazing ideas and put together some spectacular lessons that had parents calling the school to talk about the differences.”
Central Academy of Ohio, www.ohiocentralacademy.net