Curriculum

ISA international schools offer a rigorous and balanced curriculum, beginning with a Reggio Emilia inspired Early Years programme leading into the IB PYP (Primary Years Programme), MYP (Middle Years Programme) and DP (Diploma Programme). This framework integrates the characteristics of English language curriculum and traditional Chinese culture.

 

ISA Tianhe is authorised as an IB World School in the PYP and MYP. As a new school, ISA Science City is working towards their IB authorisation in the PYP, MYP and DP. To find out more about the IB and the IB programmes, please read below or click HERE.

 

Early Years

IB Primary Years Programme (PYP)

IB Middle Years Programme (MYP)

IB Diploma Programme (DP)

Early Years
The ISA Early Years offers safe and spacious learning environments, which are designed especially to meet the needs of young learners. They are all well-resourced with age-appropriate equipment and materials, and modern teaching and learning technology.

 

The programme reflects best practice in early years teaching, with a Reggio Emilia-inspired curriculum planned around units of inquiry that transition into the PYP curriculum in primary. Early literacy and numeracy are integral to the programme. Chinese is the specialist language and is integrated into the programme, forming a core aspect of the curriculum.

 

IB Primary Years Programme (PYP)

 

 

The PYP is an international, trans-disciplinary programme for Year 1-5 students designed to foster the development of the whole child, not just in the classroom but also through other means of learning. The PYP focuses on the total growth of the developing child, encompassing academic, social, physical, emotional and cultural needs.

 

The curriculum is expressed in three interrelated ways:

  1. The Written Curriculum – what do our students learn?

  2. The Taught Curriculum — how do our students learn?

  3. The Assessed Curriculum – how do we assess our students?

 

Our schools aim to develop internationally minded students by encouraging the development of the traits described in the IB learner profile. We support children to become inquirers, thinkers, communicators, risk-takers and to be knowledgeable, principled, caring, open-minded, balanced and reflective. 


IB Middle Years Programme (MYP)

 

 

The MYP is a 5-year programme from Years 6 to 10 that prepares students to become active, caring, lifelong learners who demonstrate respect for themselves and others and have the capacity to participate in the world around them. Learning focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in and beyond the classroom and encourages students to be critical, creative and reflective thinkers. The MYP is a framework on which to hang a challenging and rigorous curriculum, which provides authentic, real-world connections to the learning in the classroom.

Through the MYP, students develop an understanding of themselves as learners, their emerging sense of self and their role in demonstrating responsible action within their community, both locally and globally. In order to provide a holistic education with breadth and depth of understanding, the MYP offers eight subject groups:

  1. Language acquisition

  2. Language and literature

  3. Individuals and societies

  4. Sciences

  5. Mathematics

  6. Arts

  7. Physical and health education

  8. Design

 

The MYP centres around and is underpinned by the following five key components:

  1. Teaching and learning in context

  2. Conceptual understanding

  3. Approaches to teaching and learning

  4. Service as action through Community Service

  5. Inclusion and learning

 

As a further means of developing autonomous, self-directed learners, students demonstrate their learning through completing a Personal Project in Year 10, which encourages reflection on their learning and outcomes of their work. This is a long-term project, which is embedded within a global context and generates a synthesis of creative and critical thinking and approaches to learning through an in-depth investigation.

 

IB Diploma Programme (DP)

 

 

The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IB DP) is a course designed for students in Years 11&12. Students can choose to follow either the full IB Diploma Programme or their choice of individual IB Diploma courses. Widely recognised as the best possible preparation for study at university, the DP builds research skills, promotes personal responsibility and encourages independent learning.

 

 

Students can choose one subject from each of the groups below, three at Higher Level (HL) and three at Standard Level (SL).

  • Group 1: Studies in Language and Literature (Language A);

  • Group 2: Language Acquisition (Language B or ab initio), or a second Language A;

  • Group 3: Individuals and Societies (Humanities);

  • Group 4: Experimental Sciences;

  • Group 5: Mathematics;

  • Group 6: Arts (or a second Science, or a third language).

 

The DP has three core requirements:

  1. Theory of Knowledge (ToK): This is an interdisciplinary course where students explore the nature of knowledge across all disciplines. Critical thinking is encouraged by questioning assumptions and asking how certain of knowing what we know, The course promotes international mindedness by requiring an understanding of different cultural perspectives.

  2. Extended Essay (EE): The EE gives students the opportunity to independently investigate a self-directed research paper of individual interest. Through writing this 4,000 word essay, students develop the skills of independent research, including analysis and evaluation which will prepare them well for study at university level.

  3. Creativity, Activity and Service (CAS): As one of the three core elements that students must complete, CAS runs alongside students’ academic subjects. Students become involved in purposeful artistic pursuits, physical activity and community service projects. Fostering awareness of the broader community and life outside of the classroom, students carry out and reflect on challenging activities that have real consequences, thus promoting personal responsibility.

 

Students are assessed using a variety of methods, including examinations, essays, case studies, oral presentations, fieldwork, laboratory work, investigations and artistic performances. Some assessment tasks are marked externally by the IB, while others are internally assessed by teachers but externally moderated by the IB. All subjects are marked using the IB 1-7 scale, where 7 is the highest and 1 the lowest. Theory of Knowledge and the Extended Essay in combination are worth 3 points. The maximum score in the IB Diploma is therefore (6 subjects x 7 points) + 3 points = 45 points.