Spotlight on the MYP Clasroom Vol. 3

It can sometimes be challenging for a parent to know what is going on in their child’s classroom. ISA’s new MYP Coordinator, Douglas Beam, created a spotlight series on the MYP classroom so that parents could get a real understanding of some of the many exciting learning experiences in our various MYP classrooms. This third volume of the Spotlight on the MYP Classroom includes some information on Approaches to Learning Skills (ATLs) as well as some updates about what some of our various MYP classes have been working on. Please take a few moments to have a look. 

ATLs and the Cohort Model

The Approaches to Learning skills (ATLs) are an essential component of the Middle Years Programme. Along with the subject-specific content that students learn, students are expected to develop their communication, social, research, self-management and thinking skills. Throughout the past year, students have been asked to demonstrate flexibility as various adjustments have been made to the school. Have a conversation with your child about what skills they feel are important to help them succeed in the current model. For example, some self-management skills that you might discuss include:

  • Planning short- and long-term assignments; meeting deadlines
  • Bringing necessary equipment and supplies to class or home
  • Selecting and using technology effectively and productively
  • Practising dealing with change

What’s Happening in the MYP Classroom 

In grade 9 Music, students have been working toward composing a piece of music using a digital audio workstation (i.e. GarageBand). One component of their composition is creating, performing, and layering rhythms. As a part of their rhythmic study, students analyzed Brazilian Samba Batucada rhythms – which led them to play and arrange this short rhythmic piece. Students are currently taking this rhythmic learning and applying it to their final compositions.

Rather than having all students complete the same assessment, students in grade 6 Science have the choice to select one out of 7 possible projects to show their knowledge of plate tectonics. Some of their choices include making a flipgrid about the theory of plate tectonics, or creating a game about plate tectonics, or creating a 3D model and written explanation.

Dutch elections – Verkiezingen! 

From 15 to 17 March 2021 General elections were held in the Netherlands to elect all 150 members of the Tweede Kamer, the House of Representatives. In Dutch classes, students investigated the importance of democratic elections, the Dutch political field and their own opinions on political topics. Many Dutch classes organized elections. Students organized themselves into political parties, with a leader, a program and a campaign. Just like the real situation, with one important difference…in order to have both cohorts vote at the same time, the elections didn’t take place with a red pencil but with a click on a Google Form!

MYP French Engaged Poetry

The MYP French Speaking students of Grade 6-8 have been writing engaged poetry about the protection of biodiversity. Grade 9 and 10 students have been working with texts based on promoting equality and humanity in our society. These projects made each student reflect further on the texts we have been studying in class, enhanced the development of their creative writing skills and engaged their audience through their performance. They all communicated strong messages and concrete solutions for the future. The topics the Grade 6-8 class selected for their engaged poetry were: the consequences of pollution in the sea for various mammal species and overfishing as well as the endangered species on land plus the man-made disasters destroying our planet. The topics the Grade 9 and 10 class selected for their engaged poetry were about the awareness of excess consumerism, the acceptance of how people look, their race and the importance of humility, love and gratitude in our life.

Global Online Academy

Next year, students in grade 10 (current grade 9 students) will have a chance to take an online course through Global Online Academy. On March 31, Mr. Beam made a presentation to grade 9 parents about GOA options. If you were unable to attend that presentation, please take a look at the presentation here.