Day 1, MYP Humanities (Individuals and Societies) Workshop

It’s a cold Melbourne morning, about 400 people have come to Mt Scopus for a series of 3-day MYP workshops. The room for the Individuals and Societies workshop is very full, mainly Australian teachers with a few teachers from the wider Asia Pacific. I’ll be tweeting and blogging as I go, it’s how I take notes and think.


As is usual, we start off with some ice breakers, and it’s not long before the yellow post-it notes and the butcher’s paper appears on our table.

We’re looking at the evolution of the different models. I think it’s becoming very multi-layered; dimensions within dimensions, is it too much?

learnerMYP MYP_Prog_Model(1)MYP-Eng

What does an MYP classroom look like?

  1. There is a significant shift in teaching practice.
  2. Unit writing and teaching has an explicit connection to the Learner Profile.
  3. The inquiry questions are visible and understood by the students within the context of the unit (ie they know the ‘big Ideas’ and can relate classroom activities back to these).
  4. There are a suitable number of questions with increasing complexity and connection between them.
  5. Progression through the inquiry questions frames the unit and keeps it on track.
  6. The inquiry questions do not lead students to a pre-determined end and encourage deep inquiry.
  7. Summative tasks are provided to the students with Task Specific Criteria early in the unit.
  8. Task specific criteria is helpful to the students, but does not manipulate the meaning of the assessment criteria.
  9. Formative tasks are suited to the class and assist students to perform at their best in a summative task.
  10. Differentiation has been considered during unit writing and teaching. Differentiation is evident in formative and summative tasks.
  11. Summative tasks are connected to the inquiry questions.
  12. Summative tasks allow all students to get the optimum grade.
  13. Feedback on formative and summative tasks is in line with MYP expectations (no individual scores for questions, no ‘holistic’ score, no overall percentage).
  14. Internal standardisation of summative tasks occurs.
  15. Reflection occurs regularly- before, during and after a unit.
  16. Students are engaged and active participants. There is a balance between student directed inquiry and the teaching of skills.
  17. Formative tasks are explicitly linked to the inquiry question and the summative tasks.


The aims of all MYP subjects state what a teacher may expect to teach and what a student may expect to experience and learn. These aims suggest how the student may be changed by the learning experience.

The aims of MYP individuals and societies are to encourage and enable students to:

  • appreciate human and environmental commonalities and diversity
  • understand the interactions and interdependence of individuals, societies and the environment
  • understand how both environmental and human systems operate and evolve
  • identify and develop concern for the well-being of human communities and the natural environment
  • act as responsible citizens of local and global communities
  • develop inquiry skills that lead towards conceptual understandings of the relationships between individuals, societies and the environments in which they live.

For summative assessments, teachers must use objective/criterion B in combination with at least one other individuals and societies objective/criterion.

Subject groups must address all strands of all four assessment criteria at least twice in each year of the MYP.

Related concepts pull your key concepts into your subject area. The global context makes the content relevant to the student: Why does the student need to learn this? Why does the student care?

 Statement of inquiry



Here are my tweets with all photos: