CHONG WA INTERNATIONAL BACCAL AUREATE SCHOOLS ASSOCIATION
Integration of MYP Science with the Chinese National Curriculum
2023年4月15至16日，以“汇聚·融合·创新 — 助力现代课程发展新征程”为主题，2023 IB中国教育论坛（IBCEF 2023）在北京私立汇佳学校圆满举办。在本次论坛中，中华国际文凭学校协会（IB CISA）作为官方学术支持，并安排了融合《指南》深度解析专场。在专场分享中，《指南》撰写学校团队之一的北京市私立汇佳学校初中部科学组组长张蕙蕙老师，围绕“IB MYP科学课程与国家新课标融合的探索”进行了主题分享。
On April 15-16, 2023, the 2023 IB China Education Forum (IBCEF 2023) was successfully held at the Beijing Huijia Private School under the theme of "Collaboration, Integration, Innovation - Empowering Modern Curriculum to Embrace Future." At this forum, IB CISA served as the official academic support and arranged a breakout session to analyze the Integration Guide in depth. The team provided a comprehensive and in-depth analysis of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Organization's Integration Guide for the PYP and MYP, providing theoretical guidance and practical frameworks for more IB member schools. Among them, Zhang Huihui, the head of the Science group of the Middle School of Beijing Huijia Private School, shared her exploration of the integration of the MYP science curriculum with the national new curriculum standard.
Head of the Science group of the Middle School of Beijing Huijia Private School
Based on years of exploration, Beijing Huijia Private School adopted the IB MYP programme framework to support teaching practices and assessment, and filled in the contents by considering both the national curriculum standards and continuum with the DP curriculum. Against the background of the new curriculum standards issued in 2022, Beijing Huijia Private School took this change as an opportunity to rethink how the two curricula can leverage each other to drive more effective teaching and learning. In this breakout session, Beijing Huijia Private School used MYP chemistry as an example to analyze the possibility of integration from four parts: curriculum objectives, content, implementation, and assessment, and demonstrated how to leverage the new curriculum standards to construct and implement concept-based units.
Curriculum Objectives and Content
The 2022 new curriculum standard focuses on cultivating students' core literacy, and the established curriculum objectives are highly compatible with the MYP objectives. The core literacy that the chemistry course aims to cultivate includes chemical concepts, scientific inquiry and practice, scientific attitudes and responsibilities, and scientific thinking, which correspond to the MYP objectives and ATL skills. These course objectives are specifically refined into the content requirements of every learning theme and the requirements provide possible pathways for the unit construction. It should be noted that a very important change in 2022 new curriculum standard is the shifting from knowledge and skills to "conceptual understanding." This enables the two curricula together to construct concept-driven units and promote deep conceptual understanding.
汇佳学校9年级化学大单元建立的时候改变了原有扁平的知识结构，从内容逻辑到单元重大概念、相关概念和探究陈述采用自下而上的方式进行架构。中间铺设的脚手架极具有学科特点，Lynn Erickson “The structure of knowledge”（知识结构图）的模式提供了某种搭梯的方法，而国家新课标则给出了学科具体的可行性方案。
In the Grade 9 Chemistry unit design, a bottom-up method from contents to key/ related concepts and statement of inquiry is adopted. Lynn Erickson's "The structure of knowledge" model provides the scaffolding framework while the national new curriculum standard provides specific feasible pathways from the view of subjects.
Take a Grade 9 chemistry unit as an example to demonstrate how a unit is constructed.
Given that chemistry relies heavily on content, we begin our unit construction by placing core knowledge content at the forefront. First, according to the basic logic of contents, and by referring to the relevant knowledge web under the same learning theme in the curriculum standards, all the topics and facts of this unit are listed. Since the division of themes in the curriculum standards is for an entire academic year, it does not fully consider the logic of knowledge progression and the paving of related knowledge, so the content needs to be reorganized and allocated.
Based on the topics and facts, each topic is abstracted into a set of "principles or generalizations," which embody a deeper level of conceptual understanding. When drafting these " principles or generalizations," we refer to chemical concepts in the new curriculum standard, thereby forming conceptual understanding.
How can conceptual understanding be achieved? A series of guided questions are an important approach. Guiding questions can help the transition from factual knowledge to conceptual understanding. Scientific thinking provides the framework and methods for conceptual understanding, so conceptual questions can be generated based on this. By combining relevant factual questions, we can check whether the content and conceptual understanding are consistent, ensuring the rationality of the unit structure.
Based on the three conceptual understandings we have got, it is much simpler to form the key concepts, related concepts, and statement of inquiry for the entire unit.
The new curriculum standard and the MYP programme share a similar strategy and requirements in teaching practices. The new curriculum standard requires teaching guided by core literacy, effectively promoting a change in learning methods, and also provides corresponding teaching strategy suggestions. The MYP programme has more specific requirements for ATTs: inquiry-based, concept-driven, contextualized, collaborative, differentiated, and supported by assessment.
The 2022 new curriculum standard prompted us to shift the focus of teaching design from inquiry and collaboration to how to create a more enriching learning experience, from encouraging students to actively participate and think to better help students for deeper thinking. Considering the content taught in Grade 9 chemistry is too traditional or outdated, we:
Select teaching content that is closely related to life and worth investigating.
Based on this, learning context is carefully designed. The design allows students to apply the subject related concepts, thinking skills, and tools in problem solving and help students gain emotional experiences for meaning construction, in-depth learning and thinking, and even self-directed learning.
Zhang Huihui shared her real teaching practices in creating rich learning experiences and thoughts around three keywords - "contextualized learning," "life-oriented," and "gamification". The teaching practices included the "Homemade cola" (knowledge related: solutions), "Find the murderer" (knowledge related: chemical formula), the "Treated or untreated shrimp" (knowledge related: acidity and alkalinity), the "Find X " (knowledge related: chemical properties of acids), and the treasure hunt game (knowledge related: the periodic table). The knowledge content related in these activity design includes both theoretical and practical ones. All design is based on the students' existing problems, rather than easier tasks or not. Compared to mastering knowledge content, whether our design can promote deep conceptual understanding and the development of scientific thinking should be the focus. In this process, teachers need to transform their leading role in exploring new knowledge and stimulate student agency to construct their own deep understanding.
As we have discussed about course objectives, the alignment of assessment guidelines is expected. We prefer using MYP assessment standards. The focus of this part is on how to generate summative assessment tasks that fits the whole unit design. The achieve this, we carefully put the contents learning in real life and test students' knowledge transfer and conceptual understanding in everyday situations.
Taking the "Change" unit as an example, the summative assessment task for Standard B&C is to find exact amount of calcium in calcium tablets. Students needed to figure out the existence of calcium in the form of calcium carbonate from the label, and then use the chemical method (reaction with hydrochloric acid) to convert it into a measurable physical quantity (the mass of the carbon dioxide gas). The content of calcium carbonate is then calculated quantitatively using the chemical equation. The whole process is completely testing students' conceptual understanding: Science enables us to change the form of matter into useful products quantitatively. At the same time, the background of the real-life context connects the tasks with students' learning, and promotes the transfer of understanding.
To sum up, the new curriculum standards not only provide teaching content, but also provide possible pathways in constructing concept-based units and suggestions in implementing. These ideas are fully consistent with MYP teaching and learning requirements. It’s great to reflect on our teaching practices and refer to the new curriculum standard for more possibilities in integration.
Exploration of the Integration of IB MYP Science Curriculum with the National New Curriculum Standards
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