Middle School Programme (11-15 Years Old)
The Middle Years Programme consists of five school years: M1-M3, that correspond to the Italian middle school for children aged 11-13, and M4-M5, the first two years of high school for children aged 14-15.
In the Middle years programme, pupils study eight groups of subjects:
- Language & Literature: English literature and language, italian literature and language (mother tongue teachers);
- Individuals & Societies: history and geography;
- Mathematics: maths;
- Arts: art, music and drama;
- Language Acquisition: at the moment only Spanish, shortly we will possibly introduce French, Arabic, English for students who cannot access the language and literature curriculum;
- Integrated sciences: biology, chemistry, physics;
- Physical & Health Education: physical education
- Design: digital and product design;
There are 35 lessons per week, including Service Action, to prepare students for volunteering, Individual Tutoring and World Religions. On one side the study programme focuses on different disciplines and on the other side emphasizes the interdisciplinarity of these subjects in a holistic view. The aim is to develop the students’ skills and aptitudes to make them active protagonists of our ever-changing world
Requirements for the admission:
A student can access Middle School after having completed the italian primary school.
A documentation from the school previously attended is requested to proceed with the enrollment, accompanied by a possible interview with the student and, if necessary, an english and math test. In addition, an english reinforcement program (EAL) is activated at the beginning of the school year. The student will take a further test to evaluate the level and to schedule the timetable with the EAL specialist. If necessary, the language support might be compulsory until the student reaches a successful english level such as to follow the lessons with advancement. Enrollment and placement can be both at the beginning of the first middle school year or during M2, M3, M4 or M5 courses.
The Middle Years Program (MYP) has been specifically created upon a student-centred teaching approach, which at the same time includes and crosses the traditional school subjects, stimulating the students to identify links among different subject areas.
According to MYP program, students grow and develop through the method of “continuous research” which makes them open and intellectually inquiring.
The Curriculum is guided by Global Contexts through the students are encouraged to develop a knowledge and an openness that goes beyond the single context, connecting what they learn to what happens or has happened in the world around them.
The Global Contexts in the middle years programme are:
- Orientation in space and time;
- Equity and development;
- Personal and cultural expression;
- Technical and scientific innovation;
- Identities and relationships;
- Globalization and sustainability
These Global Contexts change according to the unit of inquiry of each subject and act as a guide for an effective and targeted learning.
Every year, MYP students are also engaged in one interdisciplinary unit that involves at least two groups of subjects.
Approaches to teaching and learning skills (ATL skills)
Constantly emphasized in each subject, ATL skills aim to make the students self-regulated and to reach specific purposes such as being able to ask good questions, set effective goals, pursue their desires and have the determination to achieve them.
ATL skills include:
- Critical, creative and ethical thinking skills;
- Research skills (such as comparing, validating and prioritizing information);
- Written and oral communication skills, effective listening and formulation of topics;
- Social skills (such as building and maintaining of positive relationships, listening skills and problem solving);
- Self-management skills, including both organisational skills as managing time and tasks, and emotional skills, as managing mood and motivation.
Action and service are essential values in the Jesuit education and are shared by the IB community. The students take action when they apply what they are learning in the classroom. IB students learn to be caring members of the community and are called to demonstrate a commitment to service, making a positive difference to the lives of the others and to the environment. Service as action is an integral part of the programme and contributes to the overall assessment of the student.
The extra curricular activities, which take place during different periods of the year, are as follows:
- International STEM Awards;
- International school sports competition in Italy;
- Music – Let’s give it a tone;
- International Youth Maths Challenge;
- Literacy – Tales of Peace
- Arts and Action (youth award winner);
- Student leadership Summit “Leadership for a sustainable future”;
- Model United Nations;
- School Trips.
Candidate for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme
International School Palermo is a candidate school ¹ for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme and pursuing authorization as an IB World School.
International School Palermo is an authorized IB World School for the teaching of the Primary Years Programme and Diploma Programme.
IB World Schools share a common philosophy—a commitment to improve the teaching and learning of a diverse and inclusive community of students by delivering challenging, high quality programmes of international education that share a powerful vision.²
¹ – Only schools authorized by the International Baccalaureate can offer any of its four academic programmes: the Primary Years Programme (PYP), the Middle Years Programme (MYP), the Diploma Programme or the IB Career-related Certificate (IBCC). Candidate Status gives no guarantee that authorization will be granted. For further information about the IB and its programmes, www.ibo.org
² – Mission Statement from the IB: The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end the organization works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment. These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.”