Action (learning by doing and experiencing) is a key component in constructivist models of education, including the kind of teaching and learning common to all IB programmes. Service, as a subset of action, has always been a shared value of the IB community. IB learners strive to be caring members of the community who demonstrate a personal commitment to service, and act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment. Service requires that students are able to build authentic connections between what they learn in the classroom and what they encounter in the community.
In the PYP, action has a specific meaning as an element of the programme in which there is an expectation that successful inquiry will lead to responsible action, initiated by the student as a result of the learning process. This kind of student action may have a wider social impact, and it always represents a voluntary demonstration of a student’s empowerment.
Action in the MYP builds upon the action initiated in the PYP and continues as an essential component of the learning process, both as part of the programme’s educational philosophy and as a practical outcome of students’ learning. The MYP aims to help students develop their personal understanding, their emerging sense of self and their developmentally appropriate responsibility in their community.
In the IB continuum, this continues with the service component of the DP’s creativity, activity, service (CAS) requirements, in which students continue to increase their awareness of their own strengths and areas for growth, undertake new challenges, plan and initiate activities, work collaboratively with others, show perseverance and commitment, engage with locally and globally significant challenges and consider the ethical implications of their actions