One of the key differences between the Diploma Program (at grades 11 and 12) and the MYP, is that the MYP offers greater curricular freedom. The essential focus of the program is to understand the connections between traditional subjects and the real world thus becoming critical and reflective thinkers. Holistic learning, intercultural awareness and communication are integral to the program.
The program aims to enable students to:
- build upon their spirit of discovery to develop an understanding and enjoyment of the process of learning, independently and in cooperation with others
- acquire knowledge and understanding and prepare for further learning
- recognize the extent to which knowledge is interrelated
- learn to communicate effectively in a variety of ways
- develop a sense of personal and cultural identity and a respect for themselves and for others
- acquire insights into local and global concerns affecting health, the community and the environment,
- and develop a sense of individual and collective responsibility and citizenship.
In the MYP curricular model, students study eight subject groups: English (language and literature), a world language (language acquisition), mathematics, humanities (individuals and societies), science, physical and health education, arts, and design. Those subjects are viewed or taught through 16 various key concepts, which are then partnered with related concepts and global contexts. These are essentially “lenses” or themes through which the subjects are viewed. Interdisciplinary learning is also a requirement of the program.
Being distinct from subjects, the concepts and contexts are more akin to recurring themes taught in each subject area. They can best be described as the types of questions students are asked to consider and answer through all eight subject areas.
Teachers are responsible for structuring varied and valid assessment tasks that allow students to demonstrate achievement according to the required objectives within each subject group. These may include: open-ended, problem-solving activities and investigations, organized debates, hands-on experimentation, analysis, reflection.
Assessment strategies, both quantitative and qualitative, provide feedback on the thinking processes as well as the finished piece of work. There is also an emphasis on self-assessment and peer-assessment within the program. Unit planning and a culminating project, called the Personal Project, are also two important aspects of the IB Middle Years Program.
Find out even more about the IB MYP on IB's website.
The coordinator of the City Honors IB Middle Years Program is Mr. James Moses.