International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme
The International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (IB MYP) is an academic programme that starts in middle school and extends into the first two years of high school. It is part of the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) and is specifically designed to serve students ages 11–16. It provides a framework of academic challenge and life skills appropriate to this stage of adolescence. The IB MYP focuses on the student’s intellectual and social development along with teaching an understanding of the student’s own history and global awareness in each subject area.
The eight core disciplines in the IB MYP:
- Language and Literature (English and French)
- Individuals and Societies (Social Studies)
- Arts (Music and Visual)
- Physical and Health Education
- Language Acquisition (Spanish, Mandarin, or French)
This student-centered programme both embraces and transcends traditional school subjects by helping students see the connections between the academic disciplines. The IB MYP is based on the best available research and collaboration of practitioners from all over the world.
The IB MYP:
- promotes responsible global citizenship, while preparing students for their future;
- provides inter-cultural awareness for all members of the school community;
- focuses on rigorous academics;
- facilitates communication for the development of interdisciplinary, thematic instruction so students connect what they learn;
- calls for students to develop higher level thinking skills and important life skills;
- provides assessment criteria;
- embeds community service throughout the curriculum.
Learn more information about the International Baccalaureate programme.
Why is the IB programme a good fit for Académie Lafayette?
Development of global, analytical, and critical thinkers
Both AL and IB focus on developing internationally minded, dedicated young people who will graduate from high school prepared to enter and complete a college degree or begin a career in a professional field.
Continuity of IB MYP curriculum
Implementation of IB MYP in grades 6–8 at the Armour campus prepares high school students for their next level of coursework. IB MYP at the high school in grades 9–10 will provide students with the skills necessary to be successful in their college preparatory coursework in grades 11–12.
College acceptance and readiness
Students who complete IB coursework as part of their high school programme have higher acceptance rates to colleges and universities, including those within the Ivy Leagye.
An increasing number of colleges are accepting IB test scores as college credit equivalencies or counting the class toward students’ college degree programs.
IB is similar to Advanced Placement (AP) programs in that students can earn college credit. However, AL students have the opportunity to take coursework in one of three chosen fields, and the entire curriculum will support their chosen academic programme. All levels of the IB programme focus on interdisciplinary approaches to learning with a strong emphasis on high levels of student engagement.
Foundational Components of the MYP
Service as Action
Action is key to all IB programmes and means that students learn through experiencing and doing. The curriculum is written to include a sustained path of inquiry and critical reflection that asks students to connect what they are learning to the world beyond the walls of their classrooms. IB learners strive to be caring members of the community who demonstrate a personal commitment to service and act to make a positive difference to both the lives of others and to the environment.
Approaches to Learning
One of the principal features of the MYP framework is the incorporation of approaches to learning (ATL) within the core disciplines. Across the IB continuum, five broad categories of ATL skills aim to empower students to become active learners who ask good questions, set goals, pursue aspirations, and hold the determination to achieve them. The five broad categories of ATL are:
- Research skills
- Communication skills
- Social skills
- Thinking skills
- Self management skills
Teaching and learning in the MYP involves learning concepts in context, which helps students develop an understanding of their common humanity and shared responsibility. Teachers use a global context when planning a unit and draw from one of the areas listed below as a guide for the inquiry process:
- identities and relationships
- personal and cultural identity
- orientations in space and time
- scientific and technical innovation
- fairness and development
- globalization and sustainability
The IB MYP Personal Project
The culminating event of the MYP is the Personal Project. Students select an area of interest, identify what they already know about the topic, discover what they need to learn to complete the project, and create a proposal for completing it. The Personal Project is a student-driven, inquiry-based project that takes place over an extended period of time and completed in the spring of the 10th grade year. Once complete, it represents a significant body of work and should showcase the skills students have developed over the past several years.