We feel that one of the fundamental goals of education is to encourage a love of learning.   At ISD, we enliven students to be independent thinkers. Rather than simply providing facts, students are posed questions and presented problems and scenarios that can be explored hands-on.

By nature, children are active inquirers. We believe our students retain far more knowledge when given the freedom to have ownership over their learning. Therefore our students engage in intellectual exploration while teachers gently guide, encourage and inspire them to navigate through an inquiry cycle and develop a variety of enduring skills (e.g. present prior knowledge, hypothesis, reflect).

The International School of Dublin is an IB World School, the curriculum is guided by the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme. ( Children who attend IB schools have a seamless transition to other schools offering IB around the world. There are more than 1 million IB students (aged 3-19) in 140 countries.

The International Baccalaureate is increasingly recognised as the gold-standard measurement of academic and intellectual development both by universities and leading graduate employers. The curriculum falls outside national and political agendas; it is innovative and exciting and is designed around key notions of international understanding, respect for diversity and appreciation for home and host cultures. It focuses on the total growth of the developing child and encompasses social, physical, emotional and cultural needs in addition to academic development.

The curriculum of each academic year is underpinned by six transdisciplinary themes. These themes are selected for their relevance to the real world. They are described as transdisciplinary because they focus on issues that go across subject areas. Each student has six Units of Inquiry yearly, one that covers each theme. These in-depth Units of Inquiry promote an integrated approach to teaching and learning.

Transdisciplinary themes:

  • Who we are.
  • Where we are in place and time.
  • How we express ourselves.
  • How the world works.
  • How we organize ourselves.
  • Sharing the planet.

All IB students aim to learn about and acquire the attributes of the Learner Profile. Every aspect of the curriculum at ISD is designed to promote these.


  • Communicator
  • Thinker
  • Inquirer
  • Risk-taker
  • Knowledgeable
  • Principled
  • Caring
  • Open-minded
  • Well-balanced
  • Reflective

Please see the 2017-2018 academic year programme of inquiry here.

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