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Curriculum

The curriculum is a living, breathing and evolving set of documents. Virtually every week teams of teachers review and discuss elements of the curriculum and refine lessons and assessments based on student needs, professional judgement and collective planning.

– NEASC, 2018

Middle Years Programme

Introduction

“Teachers are passionate about teaching their subjects at Halcyon. Strong subject knowledge permeates the curriculum and provides deeper meaning to concepts which straddle across different subjects.” – Ofsted Report, 2017 (Outstanding)

The IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) provides a framework of learning that emphasizes intellectual challenge and encourages connections between traditional subject-based studies and the real world. The MYP focuses on “learning how to learn” through the systematic development of approaches to learning (ATL) skills for communication, collaboration, organization, self-management, reflection, research, informational literacy, media literacy, creative and critical thinking, and transfer of learning. It also fosters intercultural understanding and global engagement – essential qualities for young people today.

At Halcyon, we offer an innovative, creative and academic MYP that meets the unique needs of every child.

IB MYP Curriculum

MYP students study a holistic, integrated and interdisciplinary programme of Language and Literature, Language Acquisition, Individuals and Societies, Science, Mathematics, Design, Physical and Health Education, and the Arts – a rotating programme of Music, Visual Arts and Theatre Arts. In Grade 10, students can personalise their programme in preparation for the Diploma Programme, allowing a greater focus on areas of interest.

Interdisciplinary Units

Interdisciplinary units in the MYP Programme encourage students to use perspectives from different disciplines to explore complex questions. Students may use their coding skills, taught in Design, to build an online, interactive, version of literary criticism developed in their English class; history may be explored through art or theatre, and statistical mathematical models may be used to resolve questions in economics or physics.

The MYP framework requires students to use these interdisciplinary skills in a real-world context through the core of the programme:

Service as Action

‘Service as Action’ is a central element of the MYP, requiring students to design, organise and undertake a community project. This process also includes a reflection to give students an opportunity to consider how to improve these skills for their future service projects.

Personal Project

The Grade 10 Personal Project demands that students produce a completed item (be it video, clothing, design and so on) and a 3500-word reflective report as the result of an independent research process, linked to one of the six IB ‘Global Contexts’. Recent examples of Personal Projects have focused on designing an online language programme to teach Latin; writing an iBook about how to live sustainably; and creating and building a remote-controlled plane. Halcyon’s Personal Learning Programme prepares students for this exciting journey of enquiry from Grade 6.

Diploma Programme

Introduction

“The quality of teaching in the sixth form is outstanding. Across a range of subjects, students maturely tackle challenging issues. Teachers are adept in using extended questioning to probe the understanding of all students” – Ofsted report, 2017 (Outstanding)

The IB Diploma Programme (DP) is a rigorous, academically challenging and balanced programme of education designed to prepare students aged 16 to 19 for success at university and life beyond. The DP aims to encourage students to be knowledgeable, inquiring, caring and compassionate, and to develop intercultural understanding, open-mindedness and the attitudes necessary to respect and evaluate a range of viewpoints. Approaches to teaching and learning (ATL) are deliberate strategies, skills and attitudes that permeate the teaching and learning environment.

IBDP Curriculum

DP students participate in an unmatched programme of breadth and depth that provides a more rewarding and holistic alternative to national curricula. Halcyon’s DP curriculum requires that students take a first language, a second language – Spanish, Mandarin or one of many Mother Tongue options – a social science, an experimental science programme, and mathematics. Students can also opt to take one or two arts programmes or alternatively take a second science, and this ensures continued cultivation of a rich variety of academic skills.

The DP allows students the flexibility to create their own course of study, to best suit their aspirations. At Halcyon, all our class offerings are based on student demand, providing unique opportunities for everyone.

DP students must also complete their CORE programme comprising of:

The Extended Essay

A 4000-word academic research paper allowing each student to explore their preferred intellectual discipline. It promotes high-level research and writing skills, intellectual discovery and creativity that will be an advantage in higher education while engaging students in personal research.

Theory of Knowledge (TOK)

An opportunity for students to reflect on the nature of knowledge, to make connections between areas of knowledge in their Diploma subjects and to become aware of their own perspectives and those of the various groups whose knowledge they share.

Creativity, Action, Service (CAS)

CAS is designed to strengthen and extend students’ personal and interpersonal learning. They explore and extend creative ideas leading to an original or interpretive product or performance; set physical goals contributing to a healthy lifestyle; and engage collaboratively in service with the community in response to an authentic need. Read about our student-organised volunteer trip to Cambodia here.

At the end of the DP, students achieve up to 45 points for their examinations and coursework – shared between their six subjects, their Extended Essay and Theory of Knowledge.

Open Mornings

Experience Halcyon at one of our Open Houses on campus, or one of our Virtual Open Houses.

At our Open Houses on campus, you will meet our Director, Barry Mansfield, who will deliver a presentation on Halcyon’s mission, curriculum, facilities and more. Our Student Ambassadors will take you on a tour of Halcyon’s building, and you will have the opportunity to ask our teachers questions as they deliver their scheduled lessons to their students. A Q&A session with our Director and Admissions Director will follow.