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EISM Years 7-11 Curriculum Introduction

Students in years 7-11 at Emirates International School Meadows (EISM) High School follow the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (MYP). Students undertake eAssessments and completing ePortfolios to gain an IB certified MYP certificate.

The academic programme at EISM follows the IB MYP philosophy and is designed to address the unique needs of adolescents.  The school offers a challenging and diverse curricular programme, allowing students to develop and progress, through processes of inquiry, exploration, discovery and thoughtful reflection under the guidance of skilful teachers.

The curriculum at EISM incorporates our many cultures and promotes excellence in all academic activities.  All courses of study are focussed on making meaning for students and are embedded in conceptual understanding augmented by skill development and application.

We are confident that your child will make good progress at EISM in a supportive and challenging environment. If you require further details about our curriculum in years 7-11 please contact  Mrs Loraine Hickey, Dean of Studies for Years 7 - 11,


The International Baccalaureate Learner Profile


The IB learner profile represents ten attributes valued by IB World Schools. We believe these attributes, and others like them, can help individuals and groups become responsible members of local, national and global communities. (IB, 2013) The IB learner profile underpins the whole approach of EISM, it is at the centre of all IB programmes, it forms the basis of our High School Rewards System, it is evident across teaching and learning in all areas of the curriculum and it drives the wide variety of extra-curricular activities available to our students.


Details of these ten attributes are given below:


Disposition                 Description


Inquirers                     We nurture our curiosity, developing skills for inquiry and research. We know how to learn independently and with others. We learn with enthusiasm and sustain our love of learning throughout life.


Knowledgeable          We develop and use conceptual understanding, exploring knowledge across a range of disciplines. We engage with issues and ideas that have local and global significance.


Thinkers                      We use critical and creative thinking skills to analyse and take responsible action on complex problems. We exercise initiative in making reasoned, ethical decisions.


Communicators         We express ourselves confidently and creatively in more than one language and in many ways. We collaborate effectively, listening carefully to the perspectives of other individuals and groups.


Principled                   We act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness and justice, and with respect for the dignity and rights of people everywhere. We take responsibility for our actions and their consequences.


Open-minded             We critically appreciate our own cultures and personal histories, as well as the values and traditions of others. We seek and evaluate a range of points of view, and we are willing to grow from the experience.


Caring                         We show empathy, compassion and respect. We have a commitment to service, and we act to make a positive difference in the lives of others and in the world around us.


Risk-takers                  We approach uncertainty with forethought and determination; we work independently and cooperatively to explore new ideas and innovative strategies. We are resourceful and resilient in the face of challenges and change.



Balanced                     We understand the importance of balancing different aspects of our lives — intellectual, physical, and emotional — to achieve well-being for ourselves and others. We recognize our interdependence with other people and with the world in which we live.


Reflective                   We thoughtfully consider the world and our own ideas and experience. We work to understand our strengths and weaknesses in order to support our learning and personal development.



The IB Middle Years Programme

The IB MYP is a programme of study designed to meet the educational requirements of students aged between 11 and 16 years. The curriculum at EIS-M has been developed within the IB MYP framework whilst also allowing for the demands of national and local legislation to be met.  The IB MYP is an international curriculum, aiming to combine academic rigor with the need to equip students with skills and attitudes appropriate to the challenges and opportunities of contemporary society.


The IB MYP is designed to provide students with the values and opportunities that will enable them to develop sound judgment. From its beginning, the IB MYP has been guided by three fundamental concepts that are rooted in the IB mission statement and which are also reflected in the EISM mission and belief statements. These three fundamental concepts are:


holistic learning - representing the notion that all knowledge is interrelated and that the curriculum should cater to the development of the whole person, the attributes of which are described by the IB learner profile


intercultural awareness - representing the notion that the school community will encourage and promote international-mindedness by engaging with and exploring other cultures, a key feature of international education as reflected in the attributes of the IB learner profile


communication - representing the notion that students should develop open and effective communication, important skills that contribute to international understanding as exemplified by the attributes of the IB learner profile.


The programme model of the IB MYP places the learner at its centre. This underscores the IB’s belief in educating the whole person, and placing importance on student inquiry. The IB MYP is designed to guide students in their search for a sense of place in their natural and social environments.


The IB Middle Years Programme at EISM


EISM gained official accreditation to run the IB MYP in June 2014. EISM is adopting the IB MYP because the philosophy and objectives of the programme are acquiescent with those of the school, clearly reflecting our mission and aims. In addition, the IB MYP:

  • Is an international program with no bias towards any particular national system
  • Provides for continuity across Years with the IB Diploma Programme (IBDP) in Years 12 and 13 and with the IB Primary Years Programme (IB PYP) in the primary/junior school;
  • Contains many elements which are common to the skills required by the IBDP and developed in the IB PYP
  • Provides assessment, within the IB MYP subjects, which shares a common approach by being criterion-related and inquiry-based
  • Has strong, interdisciplinary elements
  • Is flexible enough to allow EISM to design the curriculum to fit student needs
  • Does not proscribe content of subject areas but does provide a framework for their delivery
  • Supports curriculum development and external evaluation


The IB Middle Years Programme Model

The IB MYP consists of eight subject groups: language acquisition, language and literature, individuals and societies, sciences, mathematics, arts, physical and health education, and design. Student study is supported by a minimum of 50 hours of instruction per subject group in each academic year. In years 4 and 5, students have the option to take courses from six of the eight subject groups, which provides greater flexibility.


The IB MYP aims to help students develop their personal understanding, their emerging sense of self and responsibility in their community. IB MYP teachers organize the curriculum with appropriate attention to:


Teaching and learning in context. Students learn best when their learning experiences have context and are connected to their lives and the world that they have experienced. Using global contexts, IB MYP students explore human identity, global challenges and what it means to be internationally minded.


Conceptual understanding. Concepts are big ideas that have relevance within specific disciplines and across subject areas. IB MYP students use concepts as a vehicle to inquire into issues and ideas of personal, local and global significance and examine knowledge holistically.


Approaches to learning (ATL). A unifying thread throughout all IB MYP subject groups, approaches to learning provide the foundation for independent learning and encourage the application of their knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts. Developing and applying these skills help students learn how to learn.


Service as action (community service). Action (learning by doing and experiencing) and service have always been shared values of the IB community. Students take action when they apply what they are learning in the classroom and beyond. IB learners strive to be caring members of the community who demonstrate a commitment to service—making a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment. Service as action is an integral part of the programme.


Language and identity – IB MYP students are required to learn at least two languages. Learning to communicate in a variety of ways is fundamental to their development of intercultural understanding and crucial to their identity affirmation.


Global Contexts

Subject content is organized around themes or perspectives called Global Contexts. They are designed to encourage the students to make worthwhile connections between the real world and classroom learning. Teaching and learning in the IB MYP involves understanding concepts in context. Global contexts provide a common language for powerful contextual learning, identifying specific settings, events or circumstances that provide more concrete perspectives for teaching and learning. When teachers select a global context for learning, they are answering the following questions:


Why are we engaged in this inquiry?

Why are these concepts important?

Why is it important for me to understand?

Why do people care about this topic?


The six IB MYP Global Contexts inspire explorations of our common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet. They invite reflection on local, national and global communities, as well as the real-life issues and concerns of 11 to 16-year-old students. For each IB MYP unit, teachers identify one global context that establishes a focus for meaningful teaching and learning in a program of international education. Over the course of their study, students should encounter all six global contexts, which are shown in the diagram below.

The IB MYP global contexts provide common points of entry for inquiries into what it means to be internationally minded, framing a curriculum that promotes multilingualism, intercultural understanding and global engagement. These contexts build on the powerful themes of global significance that structure teaching and learning in the IB PYP, creating relevance for adolescent learners.


The Personal Project


The IB MYP Personal Project provides students the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned in the IB MYP and all students must complete the personal project in Year 11. Each student develops a personal project independently, producing a truly personal and creative piece of work that stands as a summative review of their ability to conduct independent work. Project topics may be creative or research-based and, ideally, they should reflect a student’s personal interest. Students begin the Personal Project process towards the end of term 2 in Year 10 and finish in January of Year 11. The stages of the process are documented by a journal that is assessed. While there is some recognition of the project through the criteria, a student’s record of, research about and reflection on the process is a significant part of the final result. Each student receives a Personal Project Guide (available on Managebac) and is expected to read it prior to meetings with their supervisor. Through the use of a process journal, the supervisor will provide support and guidance through the process. To celebrate the end of the Personal Project process, the school hosts a Personal Project exhibition with presentations and performances of student projects.


The IB Middle Years Programme at EISM


The table below highlights the disciplines which are offered at EISM within the 8 subject groups of the IB MYP. Please note that not all subjects are available to all students in each year of the IB MYP programme. As a student progresses through Years 1 to 5 of the MYP programme they will have the opportunity to make choices based of their previous attainment, personal aspirations and school guidance, particularly in Years 10 and 11 of the programme.


MYP Subject Group

Subjects at EISM

Language & Literature



Language Acquisition





Integrated Sciences (Years 7-9)

Biology (Years 10-11)

Physics (Years 10-11)

Chemistry (Years 10-11)



Individuals & Societies



Business Studies (Years 10-11)

Economics (Years 10-11)

The Arts

Visual Art




Information Technology

Physical & Health Education

Physical and Health Education

Non-MYP subject group elements

Islamic Education (follows MOE curriculum)


As part of the EISM curriculum and local and national requirements, all Arabic students will follow a programme of Islamic Education. During this time, other students will follow a programme of enrichment. All native Arabic speakers will follow Arabic within the Language and Literature subject group in place of a subject


Subject group objectives and assessment criteria


The IB MYP assessment model is based on assessment criteria that are directly related to the objectives of each subject group. This criterion-related approach clarifies the assessment processes for students. The programme also includes a balance between formative and summative assessment, using a range of activities within units to allow students to practise and demonstrate a full range of skills.

The information which follows give a guide to the main objectives and criteria used in each subject group. Each subject group has 4 criteria which are aligned under common themes as identified in the table below:


Subject group

Criterion A

Criterion B

Criterion C

Criterion D

Language and Literature



Producing text

Using language

Language Acquisition

Comprehending spoken and visual text

Comprehending written and visual text


Using language

Individuals and Societies

Knowing and understanding



Thinking creatively


Knowing and understanding

Inquiring and designing

Processing and evaluating

Reflecting on the impacts of science


Knowing and understanding

Investigating patterns


Applying mathematics in real-world contexts


Knowing and understanding

Developing skills

Thinking creatively


Physical and Health Education

Knowing and understanding

Planning performance

Applying and performing

Reflecting and improving performance


Inquiring and analysing

Developing ideas

Creating the solution


MYP Personal Project



Taking action



Students will generally not cover all four criteria in each subject group every time they complete a piece of assessed work. Assessments will vary in nature and each year students will be assessed a least twice in each individual criterion.