Curriculum

SIM International Academy offers a 6-year international curriculum that engenders inquiry, communication and an enterprise mindset. Designed to focus on applied learning in areas such as 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 various disciplines in an applied context. Upon successful completion of the Cambridge IGCSE, our students will be able to continue their academic journey towards a Cambridge International A Level certificate in Years 11 and 12 or a SIM Diploma (leading to an undergraduate programme with one of SIM’s partner universities).

Beyond academics, students’ learning will be enhanced by Sports Science and Physical Education, 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 curriculum focuses on:

  • Integration of knowledge and skills from the domains of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), Languages and Social Science
  • Application of knowledge and skills to real-life scenarios, including proposing solutions to identified problems
  • Personalised and collaborative learning with technology

Subject Offerings

IGCSE (Year 7-8)

Compulsory Subjects (Examinable)

  • English as First Language
  • Mathematics
  • Science

Compulsory Subjects (Non-Examinable)

  • STEM Programme
  • Enterprise Programme
  • Global Citizenship Education
  • Sports Science and Physical Education
  • Additional Language (languages offered depend on demand and availability)

IGCSE (Year 9-10)

Compulsory Subjects (Examinable)

  • English as First Language
  • Mathematics
  • Additional Mathematics
  • Chemistry

Optional Subjects (Examinable) 

(Choose minimum 1, maximum 2)

  • Physics
  • Biology
  • World Literature
  • Chinese as Second Language

Compulsory Subjects (Non-Examinable)

  • STEM Programme
  • Enterprise Programme
  • Global Citizenship Education
  • Sports Science and Physical Education
  • Additional Languages (Availability dependent on demand)

International A Level (Year 11-12)

AS Level (Choose 1)

  • English Language and Literature
  • Mathematics
  • Global Perspective and Research

A Level (Choose 3)

(To take these subjects, students need to have taken the IGCSE or their national equivalent as prerequisites)

  • Mathematics (IGCSE Additional Mathematics as pre-requisite)
  • Physics
  • Chemistry

(No prerequisites for the subjects below)

  • Economics
  • Global Perspectives and Research

Compulsory Subjects (Non-Examinable)

  • STEM Programme
  • Enterprise Programme
  • Sports Science and Physical Education

View our Cambridge IGCSE and International A Level course details here.

Languages 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, and 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 programme, students will develop a love and appreciation for the English language and its literature. The programme builds the students’ English language competency with various assessment markers and certification obtained over the years in preparation for the tertiary pathways.

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. On top of other classroom assessment, TOEFL tests will be conducted yearly to monitor students’ progress. This will help to gauge students’ preparation for the IGCSE examination.

Other Languages

We firmly believe in providing an avenue for our students to learn an additional language. 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

Currently, students can opt for Chinese as a Second Language as an examinable subject or Conversational Chinese. Other languages may be offered based on demand.

Mathematics and Science

To develop inquiry and creative thinking, the Mathematics and Science curriculum undergirds the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) programme to take our students’ learning further. Emphasising the application of knowledge, the project and problem-based protocol enables students to understand and appreciate the real-world relevance of their studies, while appreciating the rigour and structure of the disciplines.

Mathematics

The Mathematics curriculum ensures that students develop a strong foundation in Mathematical concepts and skills through solving problems in authentic situations, reasoning, modelling, and using mathematical tools and computation.

Science

The Year 7 and 8 Science curricula are structured thematically where foundational knowledge, concepts and skills in the various science domains (Physics, Chemistry and Biology) are classified into broad concepts like Diversity, Models, Systems and Interactions.

As students progress into the senior years, concepts and skills learnt will be revisited in more depth and breadth. Students will also be able to conduct scientific investigations independently, with a larger repertoire of skills in the subject specific domains.

Aims

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 and mathematical 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 and transferability to other domains of learning.

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.

  • Working with Industry Experts

SIM IA has brought in a team of industry experts including user-experience designers, web developers, entrepreneurs and engineers to customise and deliver the STEM curriculum driven by student-interest projects

  • 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.

Curriculum Approach

The 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

Across each level, students work on skill-based assignments and the STEM programme culminates in a project that will contribute to their portfolio.

Social Science

The Social Science education is part of our Global Citizenship Education programme that 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.

Social Science

  • 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
  • Appreciation of literature as an artistic expression and historical records of communities and people
  • Understanding of how the past impacts present day and future events
  • Appreciation for cultural differences
  • Foundational statistical literacy