The Communicator

PYP and MYP Update

The Current State of IB at Peirce

Primary Years Programme (PYP) - IB World School

Middle Years Programme (MYP) - IB World School

The Learner Profile



We thoughtfully consider the world and our won ideas and experience. We work to understand our strengths and weaknesses in order to support our learning and personal development.


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The 2nd Annual PYP Exhibition was held on June 14th, and the 5th graders did a phenomenal job making us aware of and taking action on a variety of topics around the central idea:

"Economics contribute to personal and societal decision making."

It's Summer - How to Keep the Inquiry Going

Museums to Visit

Museum of Contemporary Art

Chicago Children's Museum

National Museum of Mexican Art

DuSable Museum of African American History

Chicago History Museum

Smart Museum of Art

International Museum of Surgical Science

Museum of Contemporary Photography

Museum of Broadcast Communications

Swedish Museum

Museum of Science and Industry

Field Museum


Shedd Aquarium

Art Institute

And Many Many Many More! Just do a Google Search for Museums in Chicago

Visit a Park, Zoo, Farm, or Garden

Lincoln Park Zoo

Brookfield Zoo

Millenium Park

Lakefront Parks


Emily Oaks Nature Center

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

Blackberry Farms

Historic Wagner Farm

Lambs Farm

Chicago Botanical Gardens

Morton Arboretum

Explore a Neighborhood

Here is an interactive Chicago Neighborhood Map. Pick a neighborhood, do some research, and then go and explore it.

Or find a tour at the Chicago History Museum or the Chicago Architecture Foundation.

There is so much to see in our City!

Fun Summer Inquiry Activities

Check out this blog post from Mr. Lerner about Summer Math Activities.

And here are ways to keep reading this summer through your Chicago Public Library!!!

Check out the Family Field Guides from National Geographic and National Geographic Family!

Have you looked at the Peirce PYP Documents lately?

Check them out on the Peirce Website!

You will find:

PYP Assessment Policy

PYP Language Policy

Peirce PYP Programme of Inquiry

Peirce Specialists Programmes of Inquiry

...And Much More!

The Specials SCOOP!

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Here's what's been going on in Specials at Peirce:

Music: Ms. Thompson & Ms. Pedtke

PYP Music

After finishing their 5th grade musical in April, students explored the development of Jazz music throughout the last century and a half. We also focused on musical elements: Tempo & Dynamics.

MYP Music

This year MYP students had elective classes. The students got to choose one for quarter 3 and another for quarter 4.

In quarter 4,

The music elective for 6th grade was Soundtrap, a computer-based composition class. Mrs. Thompson had 40 students (split into two classes) who used the mixing software to compose original music. We used Google Classroom on Chromebooks.

This class was also available to 7th and 8th graders and Ms. Pedtke taught those grades. Final projects were selected and played during the Spring Concert and the Parent Volunteer Celebration. This class provided an unique and relatable platform for musical expression.

Another music elective for 7th grade was World Percussion taught by Ms. Thompson. The students learned about African drumming and hand-held percussion. We also went on field trip to the Chicago Cultural Center to see a Steel Pan orchestra and learn about music of Trinidad and Tobago. Each class began with a drum circle in which the participants listen to the other players and and come up with complementary rhythms to play together. All of the students from both classes performed for the Parent Volunteer Appreciation breakfast and were led by one of the students.

For the last 20 years the whole 8th grade class presented their graduation song. This year since we instituted electives, Ms. Thompson created a Vocal Production class which allowed students who were interested in learning to sing better the opportunity to develop their voices. These students chose the graduation song, The Climb, and learned to sing it beautifully in three parts. We then invited other 8th graders who want to perform for graduation to sing with them. Almost 60% of the 8th grade class will be singing. They sound AWESOME!
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MYP Art- Alicia Zapata

For fourth quarter, eighth grade will also be focusing on sculpture. Students will be learning relief sculpture and also creating three dimensional works out of found objects.

All MYP art classes will be working on the bricolage starting at the end of April.

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Spanish- Ms. Sandoval and Ms. Lenihan

This quarter MYP year 1 students learned about school schedules and how to describe what they do in each of their classes. Students started forming longer sentences and even paragraphs by learning the -AR verb conjugations.

MYP Year 2 students continued their work with verb “rule breakers” or verbs that change spelling. We are also working on a unit on “fiestas” in which students plan a hypothetical party for their family and friends.

MYP Year 3 students have continued working on speaking in the past tense. They just completed a research project in which they talked about a fictional vacation that they took to a Spanish speaking country. The students really enjoyed learning about other countries. They’re also looking forward to their field trip with the 4th grade that will take place after spring break!

This quarter MYP year 1 students learned how to talk about food. They also learned how to conjugate ‘er’ and ‘ir’ verbs so now have a thorough understanding of most present tense verbs. Their summative project for this quarter was to write an opinion letter to Ms. Zaimi about the school cafeteria.

MYP Year 2 students continued their work with present tense “rule breaking verbs”. Right now we are finishing up a unit on sports where our summative projects are a sports radio announcement in Spanish!

MYP Year 3 students worked on using the present progressive tense to talk about what people are currently doing. They also took a very exciting trip to Pilsen with the 4th graders where they learned about Mexican art and culture. We had a great time!

The MYP at Peirce

Graduation Day!

On June 18, our Peirce graduation was held at Senn Hall. With warm memories and tearful eyes, we bid adeiu to our MYP Year 3 students. Check out some of the magical moments!
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Step Up to MYP

June 19th was Step Up to MYP: Move-Up day for the 5th graders. MYP Year 1 students and teachers presentation an information session and orientation to get our current 5th graders prepared to life in the MYP. Here are a few shots from this event.

Note; This information will be presented again at the Back to School Fest. Handouts that were distributed are available below.

Middle Years Programme Orientation

Thursday, Aug. 29th, 4pm

Helen C. Peirce School Auditorium

Join us for a brief information session to learn more about the Middle Years Programme. Locks and Lockers will be assigned. Students will also be able to get their schedules at this time.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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Perice returns to Washington D.C.

Next spring, MYP Year Two and Year Three students are heading to the Washington, D.C. ! The trip will take place from April 1-April 3, 2020.. The cost of the trip is $1314 ($1289 Payable to, $25 to Peirce School).

To make this trip possible for more of our students, we are fundraising to provide travel scholarships. Scholarship Applications will be available September 6,2019 and due on October 5, 2018. Winners will be announced on October 28th. Before students can apply for a Peirce Scholarship, they must first register for the trip on (TRIP ID 178489) , and apply for the FLAG Scholarship/Financial Assistance. .

If you would like information about the trip or would like to contribute to our scholarship fund, please contact Dr. Talyia Eve Riemer (

Helen C. Peirce School of International Studies

Kimberly Lebovitz - PYP Coordinator


Dr. Talyia Eve Riemer - MYP Coordinator


For further information about the IB and its programmes, visit