Primary School

Years 1 to 6 (5 – 11-year olds)

Cambridge International Primary Curriculum

Cambridge University is the largest in the world. It is also one of the most prestigious and oldest in the world. We are affiliated and accredited to the Cambridge International Primary Curriculum programme run by the Cambridge University. CIE follows the National Curriculum of England and as such supports us in our delivery of this curriculum by providing highly valued external examinations, curriculum guidance, quality resources and in-depth analyses of pupil progress. This in turn ensures that we deliver the highest standards by making us accountable to an external body that sets the toughest standards.

The Cambridge International Primary Curriculum is specially designed for International students living in a mobile, highly technological world that ensures pupils go on to their Secondary education fully prepared in order to achieve their maximum potential and be highly regarded by all the best universities worldwide.

Our English, Mathematics and Science programmes are fully supported by Cambridge International Primary Curriculum. In addition, we provide programmes offered by CIE in Computing.


Integrated Learning

In addition to providing the necessary skills and knowledge required in all areas of our curriculum we deliver an integrated curriculum through themed topic work. This provides children with opportunities in child-led, inquiry based, independent learning. This dual system gives our children the best practice possible to put their skills into meaningful learning. There is much evidence to support that children who learn through both methods make the best progress.

Our Themed topic work covers an integrated programme in Geography, History, Science, Art and English.


Language and literacy

At British International College Cairo our teachers develop pupils’ spoken language, reading, writing and vocabulary as integral aspects of the teaching of every subject. English is both a subject in its own right and the medium for teaching; for pupils, understanding the language provides access to the whole curriculum. Fluency in the English language is an essential foundation for success in all subjects.


Spoken language

Our pupils are taught to speak clearly and convey ideas confidently using Standard English. They learn to justify ideas with reasons; ask questions to check understanding; develop vocabulary and build knowledge; negotiate; evaluate and build on the ideas of others; and select the appropriate register for effective communication. They should be taught to give well-structured descriptions and explanations and develop their understanding through speculating, hypothesising and exploring ideas. This will enable them to clarify their thinking as well as organise their ideas for writing.


Reading and writing

Our teachers develop pupils’ reading and writing in all subjects to support their acquisition of knowledge. Pupils will be taught to read fluently, understand extended prose (both fiction and non-fiction) and be encouraged to read for pleasure. At British International College Cairo, we do everything to promote wider reading. We provide up-to-date library facilities and set ambitious expectations for reading at home.

Our pupils develop the stamina and skills to write at length, with accurate spelling and punctuation. They are taught the correct use of grammar. They learn to build on what they have been taught to expand the range of their writing and the variety of the grammar they use. The writing they do includes narratives, explanations, descriptions, comparisons, summaries and evaluations: such writing supports them in rehearsing, understanding and consolidating what they have heard or read.


Vocabulary development

Our pupils’ acquisition and command of vocabulary are key to their learning and progress across the whole curriculum.  Our teachers therefore develop vocabulary actively, building systematically on pupils’ current knowledge. They increase pupils’ store of words in general; simultaneously, they also make links between known and new vocabulary and discuss the shades of meaning in similar words. In this way, pupils expand the vocabulary choices that are available to them when they write. In addition, it is vital for pupils’ comprehension that they understand the meanings of words they meet in their reading across all subjects, and older pupils are taught the meaning of instruction verbs that they may meet in examination questions. It is particularly important to induct pupils into the language which defines each subject in its own right, such as accurate mathematical and scientific language.


Numeracy and mathematics

At British International College Cairo our teachers use every relevant subject to develop pupils’ mathematical fluency. Confidence in numeracy and other mathematical skills is a precondition of success across the national curriculum.

Our teachers develop pupils’ numeracy and mathematical reasoning in all subjects so that they understand and appreciate the importance of mathematics. Our Pupils are taught to apply arithmetic fluently to problems, understand and use measures, make estimates and sense check their work. Pupils apply their geometric and algebraic understanding, and relate their understanding of probability to the notions of risk and uncertainty. Our students will also understand the cycle of collecting, presenting and analysing data. They are taught to apply their mathematics to both routine and non-routine problems, including breaking down more complex problems into a series of simpler steps.


The nature, processes and methods of science

The British International College Cairo specifies ‘working scientifically’ as the understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science for each year group. It is taught as a separate strand and is also embedded within the content of biology, chemistry and physics, focusing on the key features of scientific enquiry, so that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions. These types of scientific enquiry include: observing over time; pattern seeking; identifying, classifying and grouping; comparative and fair testing (controlled investigations); and researching using secondary sources. Our pupils seek answers to questions through collecting, analysing and presenting data. Elements of the Science curriculum are also covered in Topic work where students have the opportunity to research and inquire what they have learned within the context of the wider world.



Our principal focus of science teaching is to enable pupils to develop a deeper understanding of a wide range of scientific ideas. They do this through exploring and talking about their ideas; asking their own questions about scientific phenomena; and analysing functions, relationships and interactions more systematically. As our pupils develop they encounter more abstract ideas and begin to recognise how these ideas help them to understand and predict how the world operates. They also begin to recognise that scientific ideas change and develop over time. They select the most appropriate ways to answer science questions using different types of scientific enquiry, including observing changes over different periods of time, noticing patterns, grouping and classifying things, carrying out comparative and fair tests and finding things out using a wide range of secondary sources of information. Pupils draw conclusions based on their data and observations, use evidence to justify their ideas, and use their scientific knowledge and understanding to explain their findings. Pupils read, spell and pronounce scientific vocabulary correctly


 Art and design

Art, craft and design embody some of the highest forms of human creativity. At British International College Cairo our high-quality art and design education programme engages, inspires and challenges pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design. As our pupil’s progress, they become able to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of art and design. They should also know how art and design both reflect and shape our history, and contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation.



We aim to ensure that all pupils:

produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences.

become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques.

evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft and design.

know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms.



We provide a high-quality computing education that equips pupils to understand and change the world through logical thinking and creativity, including by making links with mathematics, science, and design and technology. The core of computing is computer science, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation, and how digital systems work. Computing equips pupils to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of media. It also ensures that pupils become digitally literate –able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.



We aim to ensure that all pupils:

Can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation

Can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems

Can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems

Are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology.



The subject area of Humanities incorporates both History and Geography.

The study of History provides opportunities for the pupils to experience and, where appropriate, to develop some understanding of events and people of different times and places. It enriches the curriculum by offering the pupils to be actively involved in exploring the world around them. This is achieved through exploring and handling artefacts, visiting places (locally and further afield), stories, books, photos and through practical craft like activities linked to particular topics.


The study of Geography allows the pupils to explore, experience and develop an understanding of such areas as their local environment, e.g. their school, local shops, the weather, jobs, water, maps, directions and exploring the differences between the country and the town. In the Upper School it is hoped that in the future pupils will be involved in activities to help them develop greater independence.


In support of the Humanities curriculum cross-curricular days will include International Day, Christmas, World Book Day, Einstein Day and many others. Throughout the year students will learn about different faiths and their celebrations through a series of specific projects and events.


Languages (German and French)

Learning a foreign language is a liberation from insularity and provides an opening to other cultures. A high-quality languages education should foster pupils’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. The teaching should enable pupils to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. It should also provide opportunities for them to communicate for practical purposes learn new ways of thinking and read great literature in the original language. Language teaching should provide the foundation for learning further languages, equipping pupils to study and work in other countries.



The national curriculum for languages aims to ensure that all pupils:

understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources

speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation

can write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learnt

discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in the language studied.



Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity. A high-quality music education should engage and inspire pupils to develop a love of music and their talent as musicians, and so increase their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement. As pupil’s progress, they should develop a critical engagement with music, allowing them to compose, and to listen without discrimination.



The national curriculum for music aims to ensure that all pupils:

perform, listen to, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions, including the works of the great composers and musicians

learn to sing and to use their voices, to create and compose music on their own and with others, have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument, use technology appropriately and have the opportunity to progress to the next level of musical excellence

understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, including through the inter-related dimensions: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations.


Physical Education

A high-quality physical education curriculum inspires all pupils to succeed and excel in competitive sport and other physically-demanding activities. It should provide opportunities for pupils to become physically confident in a way which supports their health and fitness. Opportunities to compete in sport and other activities build character and help to embed values such as fairness and respect.



The national curriculum for physical education aims to ensure that all pupils:

develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities

are physically active for sustained periods of time

engage in competitive sports and activities

lead healthy, active lives


Ministry of Education, Egypt – Statutory Requirements

In accordance with the Ministry of Education of Egypt, British International College Cairo provides a quality education delivered by highly qualified and experienced staff


Religion – Islam and Christianity

All children receive instruction in the parents’ chosen Religion. Parents have the right to opt out of these lessons if these are not your choice of Religion.


Language – Arabic

All children receive a stimulating, vigorous and rigorous programme in Arabic. Year 6 are given extra priority in preparation for their external government examinations. There is also a system in place for those who may need additional support in the Arabic language.


Social Studies

In compliance with the Ministry of Education we also provide Social Studies lessons in Arabic to all students from Years 4 to 9.

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