A Curriculum Based On The International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) And Diploma Programme (DP)

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The Learner Profile

The Lakes International curriculum at the Upper School for grades 6-10 is modeled on the IB MYP, a challenging framework that encourages students to make practical connections between their studies and the real world. Grades 11-12 follow a curriculum based on the renowned IB Diploma Programme.

The IB cornerstone is the Learner Profile, the same set of attributes that we strive to develop in our students beginning in preschool at Kinder Prep and then in the Primary Years Program. Through the IB curriculum, LILA encourages learners to become:

  • Inquirers
  • Thinkers
  • Communicators
  • Risk-takers
  • Knowledgeable
  • Principled
  • Caring
  • Open-minded
  • Balanced
  • Reflective

At LILA, our teachers model these attributes while promoting learning, using a variety of strategies. The Learner Profile also helps teachers and students establish goals, plan learning, and assess performance. The MYP and DP models provide an approach to learning that builds on these attributes and encourages students “to make practical connections between their studies and the real world.”

The core learning areas in which Upper School students will complete at least 50 hours of study include:

  • Language acquisition (Spanish, Mandarin Chinese, French)
  • Language and literature (English)
  • Individuals and societies (history/geography)
  • Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • Arts (Visual arts, music, drama)
  • Physical and health education (Phy ed)
  • Design (Technology)

Using the MYP and DP models help LILA students to develop their personal understanding, their emerging sense of self and responsibility in their community. Research tells us that students learn best when their learning experiences have context and are connected to their lives and their experiences of the world. For example, the MYP program uses “global contexts” to build understanding through explorations into:

  • Identities and relationships
  • Personal and cultural identity
  • Orientations in space and time
  • Scientific and technical innovation
  • Fairness and development
  • Globalization and sustainability

The Minnesota Department of Education acknowledges the benefits of the IB program, stating on its website, "International Baccalaureate (IB) is recognized as a superior education, preparing students for rigorous academic work so they may succeed at postsecondary institutions around the world. The program encourages students to think from an international perspective, while first developing an understanding of their own cultural and national identity. Students learn a second language and develop the skills to live and work with others internationally—essential for life in the 21st century (read more >)."

With MYP as our guide, we have developed a system of assessments to gauge how students have learned in the areas of study. LILA Upper School is currently a candidate in the process for full accreditation, which typically takes about five years. We encourage you to look through the IBO site and ask us any questions about our approach.