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IB Logo“The Prep” is home to 406 students in Senior Kindergarten through Year 7. Within those grades there are two divisions: the Primary Division runs from Senior Kindergarten to Year 5, and the Middle Division encompasses Years 6 and 7. (Then the boys head up the hill to the Intermediate Division — Years 8 and 9 — and beyond.)

Prep Academics

Students in Senior Kindergarten to Year 5 follow the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP).

Upper Canada College is committed to providing boys with the highest-quality education possible — at every age and stage of their development. We believe that International Baccalaureate (IB) programmes offer the world’s best curricular framework for meeting this commitment. While IB programmes are offered at some peer and public schools, UCC is exceptional in that all our students are IB learners.

The Primary Years Programme — Senior Kindergarten to Year 5 — is the first step in the IB journey. It provides students with curricular links to the Middle Years Programme and ultimately the IB Diploma Programme, which students undertake in their final two years at UCC. While graduation day may seem like a long way off to our boys at the Prep, it’s worth noting that the challenge of the IB Diploma Programme is well worth the enhanced recognition our graduates receive from universities.

 The IB (overview)

Imagine inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better, more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. Developing such students is one of the main goals of the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO). IB programmes encourage students to become active, compassionate, lifelong learners who respect the different perspectives of others. The IB’s educational philosophy fits well at UCC — it emphasizes comprehensive, balanced curricula and challenging assessments that develop individual talents. It also endeavours to relate classroom experiences to the realities of the outside world.

As outlined in the IB Learner Profile, globally minded IB learners of all ages strive to become inquirers; thinkers; communicators; risk-takers; knowledgeable; principled; caring; open-minded; well-balanced; and reflective.

For more information about IB programme, please visit the IBO website at

Primary Years Programme

Students in Senior Kindergarten to Year 5 (Grade 5) follow the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP). The curriculum is developed around six transdisciplinary themes that help teachers and students explore knowledge in the broadest sense of the word: who we are; where we are in place and time; how we express ourselves; how the world works; how we organize ourselves; and sharing the planet.

UCC is fully authorized to deliver the PYP curriculum, which is designed to meet the academic, social, physical, emotional and cultural needs of young students. The PYP focuses on the development of the whole child as it strives to prepare students to be world citizens and lifelong learners. At the heart of the PYP is a commitment to “structured inquiry” as a vehicle for learning. Through inquiry, concept-based questions are used to explore curricular themes and to help students to make significant connections.

The PYP culminates in Year 5 with the PYP Exhibition, which is an opportunity for each student to demonstrate the skills and knowledge he has gained in his studies. The PYP Exhibition marks a rite of passage from the PYP to the MYP.

Middle Years Programme

The IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) is an engaging, well-rounded program that encourages students to make practical connections between their studies and the real world. The program doesn’t just teach facts—it teaches the essential skills for learning how to learn. It also helps students understand their unique learning strengths and areas for growth.

The MYP is an outstanding program for boys in early adolescence, and UCC students are already reaping the benefits of many aspects of the program. The MYP — which meets all provincial and national curriculum standards — is the perfect bridge between our Primary Years Programme and the Diploma Programme. At the Preparatory School, we are phasing in this highly regarded program for our students in Years 6 and 7 (Grades 6 and 7). Learn more about the MYP @ UCC.