Journeys Through Teaching

Journeys Through Teaching

Thinking Skills: Working towards in IB ATLs

Back in October 2019 Mark and I shared our work to break down the Research Skills ATL based on a combination of IB guidance, Principles to Practice, the amazing work of other educators and the experiences we were having in our own school. The work proved to be very popular and, hopefully, helpful to many. If you haven’t seen it, you can find it here.

We returned from the IB Global Conference in Abu Dhabi excited to start a similar process with the other ATLs. Then our son and I both caught H1N1, November got to be super busy, Christmas happened and I don’t even know where to start with January! So this week it’s been nice to finally get back to this!

Much like our work on Research Skills this is intended to guide teachers, students, leaders, families etc. to break down and better understand the skills we are supporting our students to develop. It’s our hope than by seeing this as a progression of skills rather than an end point the whole school feels greater connection to, and ownership of, the discussions and learning that will support this process.

For now, we’re excited to share the PYP (Pre-K-Grade 5) breakdown for Thinking Skills, and hope to add the MYP piece soon.

We’re always trying to reflect, improve and grow so we gladly welcome any feedback from and discussion with the community!

A screen-shot of the Grade 2 Continuum – click the link below to download in full.

The PDF is in A3 originally, which we find is easier reading, but you should be able to scale down to A4 easily enough. If you’d like an editable copy please reach out via Twitter or in the comments.

9 Responses

  1. Hi Emma, Thanks for these fantastic resources. I would love an editable copy of the thinking and research skills. I am a teacher librarian, so would like to add specific skills which I can add to the continuum. Brilliant work.

  2. Hi Emma,

    Thank you for creating such a wonderful resource. I am a PYP coordinator and would love an editable version of this document. Thank you so much for sharing!

    My email is


    1. Dear Emma,

      This is brilliant and exactly what I ve been looking for. My PS and myself as an early years coordinator are new to IB. I would appreciate if you could share your fantastic work with me.

  3. I am wondering about the color coding? Is it a progression of the skill attainment as the colour gets darker within each column?

  4. Just amazing work!! so informative and learner friendly , thanks a lot. I am a new PYPC in a newly authorised IB school would love to use this if u can send an editable copy. Thanks

  5. Hi Emma I really like the Research post as it gave us also MYP progression but I am not seeing this for the other skills is it possible to those will be coming also.

  6. Hi Emma,
    Thank you for creating these great ATL continuums. Would you be able to share an editable version with me for all the skills? Thank you, Angie

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Emma Wheatley
Emma Wheatley


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