Learning at PAS

PAS’ programs and curricula is progressive and aligned from grade to grade as well as connected among and across subject areas. Our curriculum is deeply connected to service as action, Global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), social and emotional development, and six global themes which inspire our students in ECE, PYP, and MYP to prepare them for the DP program and the distinct challenges facing our interconnected world. Each global theme is addressed in a unit of inquiry each year by all students (students aged 18 months to 5 engage with four of the transdisciplinary themes each year). These units of inquiry are substantial, in-depth, concept-based, and last for several weeks. Since these ideas relate to the world beyond the school, students see their relevance and connect with it in an engaging and challenging way. Students who learn in this way begin to reflect on their roles and responsibilities as learners and become actively involved with their education. Each unit of inquiry invites students to explore concepts, global themes and contexts, develop skills, build foundational knowledge, and connect their learning to service opportunities.

Academics at a glance

Number of faculty

100 

Faculty with post-graduate degrees

80 %

Student teacher ratio

IB Continuum

Pan-American School is an IB continuum school, focussing on both personal and academic achievement and challenging students to excel in these areas. We believe that learning is an active and lifelong process and that a well-rounded education includes logical reasoning, languages, artistic sensitivity, social awareness, physical and mental health, and critical thinking. Each person’s special interests, qualities, and talents are nurtured through real-life learning experiences and diverse educational opportunities. We support our students to develop a social conscience and a commitment to peace, democracy, cultural diversity, and service to humanity.
Our core education includes:

The Primary Years Programme (PYP, PlayKids to Grade 5): The PYP prepares students to become active, caring, lifelong learners who demonstrate respect for themselves and others and have the capacity to participate in the world around them. It focuses on the development of the whole child.

The Middle Years Programme (MYP, Grades 6 to 10): The MYP provides a challenging framework that encourages students to make practical connections between their studies and the real world. The MYP is inclusive by design; students of all interests and academic abilities can benefit from their participation.

The Diploma Programme (DP, Grades 11 and 12): The DP aims to develop students who have excellent breadth and depth of knowledge –- students who flourish physically, intellectually, emotionally, and ethically.

Students also have the option of graduating with a US High School Diploma and/or the Costa Rican National Baccalaureate Diploma.

Academic approach

At PAS our Vision for Learning is that every child is empowered in a personalized, life-long journey of holistic growth which inspires a love of learning, the pursuit of excellence, and helps students unleash their passions.
There are six key pedagogical principles that underpin all IB programs.

Teaching at PAS is:
based on inquiry
focused on conceptual understanding
developed in local and global contexts
focused on effective teamwork and collaboration
differentiated to meet the needs of all learners
informed by assessment (formative and summative).

Inquiry based learning at PAS spans the inquiry continuum from confirmation to open inquiry with the majority of the learning centered around guided inquiry. Whether the teacher or the student generates the questions, the inquiry is guided by the teachers to ensure student growth and conceptual understandings.

Educational philosophy

At Pan-American School, we believe that:
An international learning community comprises teachers, staff, students, and parents who are committed to the formation of citizens prepared to face the challenges of living in and contributing to an increasingly globalized world.
Learning is an active and lifelong process in which all members of our educational community participate and strive for excellence.
A well-rounded education includes logical reasoning, languages, artistic sensitivity, social awareness, physical and mental health, and critical thinking. It allows for the nurture of each person’s special interests, qualities, and talents through real-life learning experiences and diverse educational opportunities.
The acquisition of skills and knowledge should be applied to the development of a social conscience and a commitment to peace, democracy, cultural diversity, and service to humanity.
A stimulating learning environment includes a safe, comfortable, and attractive campus, and a supportive and happy atmosphere.
The continuous practice of values shapes the moral-ethical and spiritual character of each person.