What are Approaches to Learning?
Approaches to learning (ATL) is the term used by the IB across all programmes to describe a set of practical skills that provide the foundation for independent learning and encourage the application of their knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts. Developing and applying these social, thinking, research, communication and self management skills helps students learn how to learn. (IB 2014)
They can also be termed soft skills, life skills, information literacy skills, 21 century skills etc.
Each of the subject criterion have elements of the ATL skills in them, and this where the ATL skills need to be embedded. They are not an add on to the curriculum, but are an integral part of assisting student achievement in each subject.
ATL skills taught in each unit need to directly correlate with the assessment task focusing on the skills embedded in that task that are required for all students to be able to succeed. Only ATL skills that will be explicitly taught need to be included in the MYP planner. Not everything that will be 'hit'.
Not all subjects focus on the same ATL skills, and not all ATL skills need to be covered in one year or in one subject, however, students who have a greater proficiency of ATL skills, will have more success across the board.
Further reading and resources
The Learners Toolbox :
PORTRAIT OF A SELF-DIRECTED LEARNER
Non Academic Skills are keys to success.
Could rubric-based grading be the assessment of the future?
Ser y Estar - Includes general resources and specific resources for the teaching of the Spanish language. from @rafangel
Approaches to teaching and Learning from @ibiologystephen
What are the 21st Skills every student needs?
Thinking beyond the summative assessment
Practical Approaches to Learning website has been developed and maintained by Dianne McKenzie, School Library Connection.
Twitter : @dimac4
The image below outlines the MYP planning process and how the ATL skills fit into the overall plan.