Tanzania Primary School Structure

Find Primary Schools

Primary education in Tanzania is free and compulsory for children aged 7 to 14. Public primary schools are generally free, but parents have to pay and provide for all school materials, uniforms, food, and transport.  Most children start primary education at the age of 7. Primary education starts from standard 1 to standard 7. Primary schools here are either public or privately owned.  Most public schools and offer instruction in Kiswahili and some cases Students start learning English in standard 3. 

At the end of standard 7, students will sit for the Primary School Leaving Examination to determine where the student will be placed in secondary school. There are two streams in secondary school, the academic stream, and the vocational stream, and this examination will determine which stream students will follow. The primary school year begins in January and has two terms (January to June and July to December).

  • Duration of study:  7 years
  • Ages                            : 7-14 years
  • Primary Languages: Swahili, English
  • Terms: 2 (January-June and July- December)
  • Admission Term: throughout the year
  • School Types: Public, and Private.

Standard primary school curriculum

The primary focus of the Tanzanian primary school curriculum is the development of critical and creative thinking, communication, numeracy, technology literacy, personal and social life skills, and independent learning. The Tanzanian curriculum is generally composed of twelve subjects namely Kiswahili, Mathematics, Science, Geography, Civics, History, English language, vocational subjects, French, Religion, Information and Communication Technology, and school sports. Cultural activities offered may include poetry, drama, music, art, and sports, to mention but a few. Agriculture has also been added to the curriculum.

Examples International Primary Schools in TANZANIA

The following are some of the top schools and international schools that offer primary education for international students in Tanzania.

Braeburn Dar Es salaam international school

This is a co-educational international school in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The school offers education for children from all backgrounds between the ages of 2 to 11 years in the primary section.

  • Established: 2015
  • Location: Africana/Mbezi Beach, off Bagamoyo Road at the Africana Junction, Dar es Salaam
  • Levels: year 1 to 6
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation: Cambridge International Examinations
  • Admission term: throughout the year
  • Terms: 3 (1st term- late August to December, 2nd term- January to early April, and 3rd term late April to July).

The school’s academic year starts in August. Primary school at Braeburn encompasses Years 1 to 6, for children aged 5 to 11 years.


Braeburn Dar Es Salaam offers a curriculum based on the English National Curriculum that places significant emphasis on the development of core skills. Subjects offered here include English (Speaking and Listening, Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar, Reading and Writing), Mathematics, Science, Citizenship (including Religious Education), Design and Technology, Geography, History, Languages (French and Kiswahili), Performing Arts (Music and Drama), Physical Education, Personal, Social and Health Education (including Finance education), and Computing, Art and Design.

Students are allowed to develop their talents and the school emphasizes the holistic development of students. Learning emphasizes academics, music, sports, the arts, outdoor activities, and drama. In Key Stage Two (Year 3 to 6), a specialist teacher teaches Drama and French classes start from Year 4.

Extracurricular Activities- All students are encouraged to take part in an extra-curricular activity that supports the development of the individual student. Students can join any of the clubs offered here that include Arts and Crafts, Ballet, Board games, Chess, Community service, Dance, Debate, Environmental awareness, First aid, Martial arts (Taekwondo and Karate), Maths Challenge, Model United Nations, Dancing, School production, Scouts, Sewing, STEM, and Storytelling.

Sports- sporting activities offered her include Athletics, Basketball, Cricket, Cross-country, Football, Hockey, Netball, Rounders, Swimming, and Tennis, to mention but a few. These are seasonal sports.

Facilities- The school has extensive facilities that provide academic, physical, and artistic opportunities. These include A Library, a Music and drama suite, Two laboratories, an ICT suite, an Information technology suite with Wi-Fi access on-site, A science laboratory and preparation rooms, a Specialist art room, a Media center, Assembly/exam room, a playing field, tennis and basketball courts, A 25-meter swimming pool and a small learners' pool, A multipurpose hall, to mention but a few. These are aimed at offering students the best learning experience and offer them opportunities to excel.

Application for admission requirements

All applicants seeking admission at the school must provide copies of:

  • a passport
  • birth certificate
  • 2 recent reports cards
  • School leaving certificate from the previous school.


International school of Tanganyika

This is an independent, private, co-educational international, and non-profit day school located on two campuses in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The elementary school is located in Upanga.

  • Established: 1963
  • Address: PO Box 2651, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
  • Levels: year 1 to 6
  • Type: Private, co-educational
  • Accreditation/membership: International Baccalaureate, MSA, Council of International Schools, Association of International Schools in Africa, and more.
  • Admission term: throughout the year
  • Terms: 3

The school offers the primary year’s program from the international baccalaureate, catering to students from Early Childhood to Grade 5. It offers rigorous academic programs and a variety of extra-curricular activities. The school aims to create an environment where students can understand and grasp the 5 essential elements (concepts, knowledge, skills, attitudes, and action) that form the foundation for their learning. These 5 elements offer students the opportunity to develop an understanding of concepts, and allows them to make connections throughout their learning, Gain the knowledge that is relevant and significant globally, acquire transdisciplinary and disciplinary skills, Develop attitudes that will lead to international-mindedness, and Take action as a consequence of their learning.

Curriculum- The subject areas that the PYP curriculum offers include Language, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, Creative Arts, Music, Visual Arts, and Personal, Social, And Physical Education (PSPE).

Extracurricular activities- students have the opportunity to take part in a variety of extracurricular activities. Activities include Music, drama, fine arts, writing, photography, videography, robotics, Tinga-Tinga painting, and Tanzanian drumming. Students can also take part in a variety of sporting codes offered here, where students can compete or play recreationally.

Prospective students- Admission to the school is dependent on the applicant meeting the admission criteria, namely academic performance, behavior, and ability to benefit from the rigorous IB Programme. Some of the requirements to apply for admission here are as follows:

  • A copy of each parent or guardian’s passport biodata page.
  • A copy of each child’s passport, information page only. 
  • a copy of the child’s birth certificate
  • One recent passport-size photo of each child and parents or guardian.
  • School Reports, Transcripts, or Test Reports for the current academic year.
  • Previous School Reports, Transcripts, or Test Reports for the last school year.
  • Any psychoeducational or special education evaluations/records
  • TB Screening Results (Tine Test) or Current BCG Certificate.
  • Copy of Residency Permit
  • A Non-refundable $500 Application Fee for each application.

In the case where these records or documents are not in English, there should be translated by an official translator

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