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

March: Open-Minded

We critically appreciate our own cultures and personal histories, as well as the values and traditions of others. We seek and evaluate a range of points of view, and we are willing to grow from the experience.

Inquiry in the Primary Years Programme

5th Graders Inquire into Immigration

5th grade students had an opportunity to meet and ask questions of an immigration attorney. This opportunity helped them as they prepare for their big debate on the following topic on March 19th.

Topic: The United States should embrace relatively high levels of immigration; and not adopt policies to significantly reduce immigration.

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4th Graders Inquire into the Suffragist Movement

4th graders in 204 use the Question Formulation Technique (check it out below) to generate a variety of questions. Check out the photograph they used to get the questions, how they collaborated in groups, and the questions they developed.

Kindergarten Students Inquire into Homes

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Support for Inquiry at Home

Do you know how to use SOAR (the Online Library System)?

Your children do! So have them teach you, or use these two pieces of information to learn more!


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Missed the Behind the Scenes Tours??

Here is some of the information that was shared. Please feel free to reach out to Mrs. Lebovitz with any questions.

How can you support inquiry at home?

Ask about what your child is learning in class - "Here are 30 Questions to Ask Your Kid Instead of How Was Your Day."
  • Support and encourage interest and curiosity by following up with activities at home.
  • Encourage and practice good communication skills such as starting conversations and debates about current events.
  • Help your kids develop research skills online and from text.
  • Enjoy building projects together in the home.

Here are "50 Fun Questions to Get Your Kid Talking"

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 MYP at Peirce

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LEVEL 2 Volunteers Needed!

Career Day at Peirce is rapidly approaching and we need a minimum of 40 guest SPEAKERS. Due to the new CPS requirements for non-CPS employees, we are have are having a very hard time getting speakers. If you are a LEVEL 2 VOLUNTEER, please consider signing up to be a part of this event. If you are not yet a registered CPS volunteer, register here

On CAREER DAY, students in our Middle Years Programme a series of presentations given by our guest speakers. Our guests share with the students the training that they received for their career, as well as give them an idea of what a "typical day" is like in their line of work. The presentations conclude with a question and answer session.

If you are interested in being a part of this awesome event, please sign up HERE. If you would like to support us, but are unable to join us on April 12, please forward this information to a friend!

Thanks in advance!


MYP students were asked to share the ways in which they are living the LEARNER PROFILE. Check out what they had to say...

Here's the Scoop on Specials at Peirce

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PYP Spanish- Mrs. Marisela Sandoval

This quarter PYP Spanish learned a variety of concepts in the target language.

Kindergarten students focused on cultural celebrations and expressions. They learned about La Navidad, Januca, Kwanza and other Hispanic Holidays and traditions. Students also studied seasons, days of the week and winter months. They learned how to count from 11-100 and reviewed colors the following colors: blanco, azul, verde, rojo.

1st Grade students learned about patterns in the sky and how the environment helps us understand weather and seasons. They identified seasons, and named them in Spanish. They described weather and talked about activities that people do in different seasons. They reviewed days of the week and the difference between the Spanish and the English calendars.

2nd grade students learned about how changes in the environment affect how people dress. Students learned about different types of clothing in Spanish. They categorized clothing for different seasons. Students reviewed seasons and weather. They practiced conversations using expressions such as “Qué llevas puesto?” and “Yo llevo puesto la falda”.

3rd grade students learned about how character traits reflect our actions and shape our beliefs and values. They listened to and read about descriptions of others. Talked and wrote about personality traits. They described family members as well as friends. They had conversations using interrogative questions: Quien es? Como es?
4th grade students learned about schools and how they are part of a structured society and it is a right that requires responsibility from those being educated. They listened to and read descriptions of school subjects and schedules. They talked about classes, school activities, and likes and dislikes. They exchanged information about classes and activities they have in common. They also learned how to used verb “ser” to describe school subjects as well as adjectives such as divertida, aburrida, interesante, etc.
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PYP & MYP Music- Mrs. Brooke Thompson

PYP music classes were focused on performing in the Winter Concert and then, in January, students learned about different classical composers and tried a little composing on their own. To give a little information about the composers, I use a set of videos that feature a child interacting with the composer. We talk about how the stories in the videos are fiction but do show the time period in which the composer was writing music. Each video also uses music from the composer as the soundtrack. Here are the composers we learned a little bit about:

1st grade: Johann Sebastian Bach

2nd grade: George Friedrich Handel

3rd grade: Gioachino Rossini

4th grade: Franz Liszt.

Ms. Thompson had to be away for two weeks and Ms. Pedtke jumped right in with a couple of composing lessons.

Both Ms. Pedtke and Ms. Thompson will be working with MYP students for the remainder of the year and students will now work with Ms. Moritz, our awesome dance teacher!

PYP & MYP Art - Mrs. Alicia Zapata

Fifth grade is currently finishing a unit on painting and color mixing. They have just completed warm and cool color paintings based off of the artist Hokusai’s The Great Wave, 1830.

During third quarter students in MYP have switched to an elective schedule. Students taking art this quarter in 6th-8th are taking Painting, Drawing and Mixed Media. Fourth quarter will feature a Sculpture class in all three grade levels.

Sixth grade is beginning a unit on Surrealism. Students will be learning about the artistic movement, doing automatic writing and drawing and focusing mainly on mixed media collage in the Surrealist style.
Seventh grade is beginning a unit on light and shadow in art. Students are learning about how light creates shadow and how that gives the illusion of depth in a two-dimensional work of art. Students will create a mixed media piece that focuses on light and shadow and creating a sense of depth.

Eighth-grade students are beginning two units they will work on simultaneously. The first is the Chicago Artist Legacy project. Students have selected a living Chicago artist to study. Once they have researched the artist they will be contacting them to ask if the artist would be interested in donating a work of art to the Peirce permanent collection. Students will be able to select artists they feel reflect the Peirce community.

The creating aspect of eighth grade will be focused on learning and creating geometric art; specifically Islamic stained glass and tessellations. Students will first study and then create an Islamic stained glass design on transparent plastic and add various colors to it. These will be hung in windows so that light will shine through in the same way that light shows through stained glass.

PYP & MYP Spanish - Ms. Lenihan

Last quarter MYP year 1 students learned about how to describe people using descriptive adjectives and the verb ‘ser’. They also began the difficult skill of sentence agreement. Our final projects for this quarter involve them describing their family in friends in a mock party planning setting.

MYP Year 2 students continued their work with verb “rule breakers” or verbs that change spelling. We are also working on a unit on “around town” vocabulary. Our summative projects this quarter will be a Chicago activity plan for tourists to visit our wonderful town!

MYP Year 3 students have continued working on speaking in the past tense. They are currently working on an advertisement campaign for a technology company which requires them to describe the company in both the present and past tense.

PYP ART- Mrs. Meredith Buchbinder

Fiesta de Arte is right around the corner and students have been working tirelessly getting projects ready to display at the community art festival! Our fourth graders have done research to learn about famous artists and have recreated the paintings to display at Fiesta. We cut out ovals in the center of the paintings so that students and their families can become a part of famous works of art! Fourth graders are also working on making puppets for a local counseling organization to use for little kids who need to talk about big emotions. Third graders are just finishing their unit on ceramics, during which we made wall vases.Now they are moving onto their unit on Abstract art and we are creating a large hanging work of art using recycled CDs and yarn.
Second graders finished landscape printmaking and are now learning about still life drawing and painting. They are in the process of painting beautiful vases of flowers. We read the book The Girl Who Heard Colors by Marie Harris and learned about synesthesia. We also looked at Wassily Kandinsky’s work and how he also played with the overlap of senses in his art. First graders are using his paintings to create their own concentric circle paintings.
Our kindergarten students are trying out so many different forms of art! In the past month we have worked on ceramics pinch pots, painting the alphabet, and drawing Georgia O’Keefe flowers for Women’s History month. We are now moving onto a unit that connects with their How the World Works unit. They will be exploring forces in nature when we (safely and under GREAT supervision) melt plastic to create works that mimic Chihuly’s works of art. Please come to Fiesta de Arte on March 21st from 4:30-7:30!
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Senn High School Tour for PEIRCE PARENTS

Thursday, April 4th, 9-11:15am

5900 North Glenwood Avenue

Chicago, IL

Meet us at Senn for an opportunity to see classes in session at Senn, learn more about the MYP Partnership and speak with Principal Beck. All PEIRCE PARENTS are welcome!

Conózcanos en Senn para tener la oportunidad de ver las clases en sesión en Senn, obtener más información sobre la asociación MYP y hablar con el director Beck. ¡Todos los padres de PEIRCE son bienvenidos!

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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