The International School of Riga (ISR) is recognised by the International Baccalaureate Organization as an IB World School and became the Baltics first Cambridge International Centre in 2010 and one of the very first schools in the world to offer the International Middle Years Curriculum in Grade 6 to 8. With the start of High School in August 2013 ISR has adopted the Cambridge IGCSE programme in Grades 9 and 10.
Preschool and Primary School
The IB Primary Years Programme (PYP), for students aged 3 to 11, focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. Detailed information on the Primary Years program can be found at www.ibo.org/pyp/
Download the ISR Curriculum power point presentation and learn about PYP
The International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC) is a structured, rigorous, exciting tool to support improved learning, student engagement, international mindedness and personal development for 11-14 year olds. The programme is taught over three years and is based on interdependent themes and subject-driven units. Detailed information on the IMYC can be found at www.internationalmiddleyearscurriculum.com
The Structure of an IMYC Unit
- 6 thematic units per year
- Entry Point
- Knowledge Harvest
- International mindedness
- Learning Activities
- Reflective Journaling
- Exit Point
Assessment for Learning
Learning Goals and Learning Targets
Everything is based on clearly defined learning goals and standards, which outline the knowledge, skills and understandings across all of the subjects and international mindedness as well as the personal dispositions students need to develop through their middle years experience.
The explicit learning targets are derived from the learning goals by teachers so that the learning takes advantage of the schools local and particular contexts. If the learning goal talks about students knowing how rivers are formed, the learning target, developed and extended by the teacher (and perhaps the students, together) will be specific about which river is going to be studied.
Learning goals, therefore allow the opportunity of precise locally based content choice. Learning targets are the explicit outcomes that students know they have to reach but each of them is an example that supports the broader learning goal.
Assessment for Learning
Assessment and Evaluation are important. They are the way we find out whether and to what extent students have learned. Briefly the IMYC believes that:
- Assessment and Evaluation differ. Assessment is used when the outcome is clearer and relatively unproblematic. Evaluation is used when the outcome is less clear and more problematic. Evaluation requires the use of evaluative judgments.
- Knowledge is assessed, most effectively an efficiently through conventional tests. This is because knowledge – in the way we use it in the IMYC – is 'true' or 'not true' for now. Paris is the capital of France. Lyon is not.
- Skills are assessed and evaluated. In the IMYC, skills develop through the three age-appropriate stages of Beginning, Developing and Mastering. Each stage is described descriptively and, therefore, might appear to be capable of knowledge style simple assessment. But the change from one stage to another – when a student moves from Beginning to Developing is not clear and requires judgment on the part of the teacher and the student.
- Understanding is evaluated. Because understanding is fluid and personal it can never be 'right' or 'wrong'. That's why the evaluation of understanding requires judgment.
ISR has been a Cambridge International Examinations Centre since early 2010 and when the High School opens for Grade 9 students in August 2013 ISR will use the Cambridge IGCSE programme. Detailed information on the Cambridge IGCSE can be found at www.cie.org.uk/qualifications/academic/middlesec/igcse/overview
Cambridge IGCSE is the world’s most popular international curriculum for 14-16 year olds, leading to globally recognised and valued Cambridge IGCSE qualifications. It incorporates the best in international education for learners at this level. It develops in line with changing needs, and is regularly updated and extended. Cambridge IGCSE teachers can draw on excellent resources, training and advice from subject experts.
Cambridge IGCSE encourages learner-centred and enquiry-based approaches to learning. It develops learners’ skills in creative thinking, enquiry and problem solving, giving learners excellent preparation for the next stage in their education. Schools can build a core curriculum, extend it to suit their learners and introduce cross-curricular perspectives. Clearly defined learning outcomes and content, mean Cambridge IGCSE is compatible with other curricula and is internationally relevant and sensitive to different needs and cultures.
Schools can offer any combination of subjects. Each subject is certificated separately. Over 70 subjects are available, including more than 30 language courses, offering a variety of routes for learners of different abilities. Cambridge IGCSE develops learner knowledge, understanding and skills in:
- Subject content
- Applying knowledge and understanding to familiar and new situations
- Intellectual enquiry
- Flexibility and responsiveness to change
- Working and communicating in English
- Influencing outcomes
- Cultural awareness