Curriculum

SIM International Academy offers a 4-year IGCSE curriculum that engenders inquiry, communication and an enterprise mindset. Designed to focus on applied learning in STEM (Science, Technology,Engineering and Mathematics) and the Social Sciences, our learners will be exposed to authentic scenarios to deepen their understanding and appreciation of these academic disciplines in an applied context. Upon successful completion of the IGCSE, our students will be able to continue their academic journey towards a Cambridge A Level certificate in Years 11 and 12 or an SIM Diploma (leading to an undergraduate programme with one of SIM’s partner universities).

Beyond academics, students’ learning will be enhanced by co-curricular and boarding programmes that allow them to experience education for the real world. They will also learn to collaborate and to communicate effectively.

Our 4-year curriculum leading to the Cambridge IGCSE certificate focuses on:

  • The integration of knowledge and skills from the domains of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), Languages and Humanities
  • Students’ application of their knowledge and skills to real-life scenarios, including proposing solutions to identified problems
  • Collaborative learning through technology

View our Cambridge IGCSE course details here.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)

SIM International Academy offers a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) curriculum incorporating real-life scenarios that provide a hands-on approach to learning. To succeed in this new information age driven by technology, students need to develop their capabilities in STEM beyond understanding Science and Mathematics as stand-alone academic subjects. STEM education nurtures critical thinking, fosters science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators to apply technology in meaningful ways. By educating our learners in STEM concepts, we want them to develop an appreciation for these subjects and their inter-connections.

STEM

  • Integrated Problem-Solving

Students will apply their Science, Mathematics and Technology knowledge and skills in suggesting solutions to real-world problems.

  • Engineering Design Process (EDP)

Guided by this flexible process, students will define problems, conduct research, develop ideas for solutions, and finally create, test and re-design prototypes.

  • Overseas Partner Schools

Teachers will collaborate with partner schools to develop STEM resources and lessons. Students can also collaborate with their peers from partner schools to share ideas and present findings.

Aims

The Science and Mathematics curriculum aims to develop in students

  • A strong foundation in the understanding of concepts and skills in Mathematics and Science, in order to appreciate the possibilities and limitations in the nature of these disciplines
  • A strong sense of inquiry in the learning of Science and Mathematics, helping to develop critical thinking skills and curiosity about the nature of science and mathematical explorations
  • A spirit of enterprise through a research-based and innovation mindset, applying their understanding of Mathematics and Sciences to local and global contexts
  • The ability to communicate mathematical and scientific understanding to a range of audiences, and to harness technology to work collaboratively as a community of learners

 

Curriculum Approach

The four-year curriculum is an immersive, rigorous and holistic experience where STEM is applied as a pedagogical approach across the learning of Science and Mathematics. With this pedagogical approach, the learning of mathematical and scientific concepts is designed to

  • Provide learning experiences to integrate skills and knowledge of STEM and non-STEM disciplines
  • Focus on the learning of big ideas and critical skills in the targeted discipline(s) and engage in applying high order thinking skills to authentic scenarios
  • Provide an immersive experience in using multiple modes of technology and working collaboratively in teams
  • Demonstrate fundamental engineering design processes such as brainstorming, creating, researching and prototyping, and to apply them in authentic problem solving

Assessment

SIM International Academy uses multi-modal assessments – formative and summative – to inform and direct student teaching and learning. Recognising that different students learn differently, and different understandings are manifest in different ways, the assessment model is one that incorporates a mix of approaches and platforms, including:

  • Science practical experiments
  • Coursework submission
  • Presentations
  • Topical tests

Students are graded according to rigorously designed rubrics that will assess the development of their skills, research and analysis abilities, and collaborative intelligence. Regular time is also set aside to give students sufficient pen-and-paper assessment exercises that will prepare them for the traditional sit-down, timed component of the IGCSE examinations.

Language and Literature

The limits of my language mean the limits of my world. – Ludwig Wittgenstein, philosopher

Language defines us; who we are and how we make sense of ourselves, others and the world around us. It is at the heart of what it means to be human. It is living, breathing, evolving.

We believe that at the heart of language acquisition and mastery is the use of language in meaningful and authentic situations. This will be driven by an oracy programme where students learn language through active engagement in debates, speeches, presentations, drama and spoken word poetry. Through this oracy-driven curriculum, students will learn how any communication, both written and spoken, hinges upon a clear understanding of purpose, audience and context. The programme aims to develop skilled and confident communicators who can navigate an increasingly interconnected world through its global language, English, and yet retain the culture and identity embedded in their various home languages.

By the end of the programme, students will find their voice, take the stage and make themselves heard.

Aims

The English programme aims to develop students who are confident and competent communicators. Through the course, students will develop a love and appreciation for the English language and its literature. The four-year programme culminates in the IGCSE English as First Language in Years 9 and 10.

The English programme in Years 7 and 8 will focus on the following areas:

  • Developing a wide vocabulary through extensive reading, including an understanding of the connotation of words and their literal and figurative usages
  • The learning of grammar through the explicit teaching of grammatical structures as well as error-analysis of student work
  • Building confidence and competence in public speaking through group and individual presentations, drama, spoken word poetry, debate and structured class discussions
  • Developing competence in both reading and producing various text types such as formal and informal letters, fictional and nonfictional narratives, expositions and argumentative essays

The English programme in Years 9 to 10, in addition to reinforcing areas taught in Years 7 and 8, will focus on the following areas, building up to the IGCSE English as First Language assessment:

  • Developing a personal style and awareness of audience
  • Developing skills of summary, analysis, synthesis and inference
  • Developing the ability to structure facts and ideas and present perspectives effectively

Students entering the course will have to take a diagnostic English test to allow our teachers to tailor the curriculum to their individual needs.

Other Languages

Students who wish to keep up with their native language or learn a new language will also be able to do so at SIM International Academy. Studies in this category of subjects can be taken at either an examinable or non-examinable level.

Humanities Overview

The Humanities Division of SIM International Academy provides guidance on the development and delivery of language, humanities and social science subjects that will prepare students for the Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) in Year 10. Beginning in Year 7, the LHSS programme brings together a unique learning experience in the humanities and social sciences through a blend of classroom and experiential learning scenarios.

Using an interdisciplinary approach, the programme leads students through an experiential understanding of the evolution of human societies and cultures vis-à-vis the physical environment we find ourselves in, the changes that humanity has experienced over time, and the constants that contribute to our developing understandings of who we are.

To develop skills of social and environmental observation and critique, students are provided opportunities to sharpen their logical thinking abilities and express them effectively in both written and spoken English through authentic learning and assessment tasks.

Languages & Humanities

  • Language and Communicative Skills

Students will hone their language skills through debates, speeches, presentations, drama performances and poetry recitals.

  • Humanities Field Work

Students will work on urbanisation projects and cultural studies to understand the impact of competitive land use, urban planning and globalisation.

  • NGOs/Local Social Enterprises Collaboration

To develop their societal leadership skills, students will work with NGOs or local social enterprises to understand the planning behind local and regional community outreach efforts, and participate in service-learning projects in environmental conservation and education.

Aims

The holistic programme aims to develop in our students:

  • Critical thinking and research skills
  • English at first language competency
  • An appreciation of literature as an artistic expression and historical records of communities and people
  • An understanding of how the past impacts present day and future events
  • An appreciation for cultural differences
  • Foundational statistical literacy

Assessment

SIM International Academy uses multi-modal assessments – formative and summative – to inform and direct student teaching and learning. Recognising that different students learn differently, and different understandings are manifest in different ways, the assessment model is one that incorporates a mix of approaches and platforms including:

  • Project work
  • Presentations
  • Video
  • Graphic presentation

Students are graded according to rubrics that assess the development of their expressive and receptive skills, research and analysis abilities, and collaborative intelligence. Regular time will be set aside to give students sufficient pen-and-paper assessment exercises that will prepare them for the traditional sit-down, timed component of the IGCSE examinations.