Middle and Upper School Overview

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high school prepHigh school prep at the IMG Academy's English department is comprised of teachers with diverse teaching approaches, interests, and backgrounds. While teaching styles vary, there are three areas of focus: literary analysis and critical thinking; formal writing, with emphasis on literary analysis essays and research-based writing; and grammar, mechanics, and vocabulary building. The overarching goal of the English Department is to develop students into stronger writers and thinkers in preparation for college. 

In middle school, students will take Sixth-, Seventh-, and Eighth-Grade Language Arts. Over the course of these three years, teachers will introduce students to a variety of texts, genres, styles, and writing opportunities to teach literary analysis and formal writing skills in preparation for upper school.  Additionally, teachers will focus heavily on grammar and mechanics to improve student writing. 

Upon successfully completing Eighth-Grade Language Arts, students will transition to English Survey in the ninth grade, where they will receive more in-depth study of the four overarching literary genres: poetry, the novel, the short story, and the play. Further, students will prepare more rigorously for writing at the college level. Tenth-grade students will take World Literature, or Honors World Literature, where they will read, analyze, and write about a variety of texts across cultures, time periods, and genres. In eleventh grade, students have three offerings: American Literature, Honors American Literature, Advanced Composition, and AP English Language and Composition. In twelfth grade, students can take Contemporary Fiction, Honors British Literature, Advanced Composition, or AP English Literature and Composition. In addition to the Honors only sections of some courses (these Honors offerings are dependent on student enrollment), all upper school English courses, except the AP classes, have Honors contract offerings, which include additional readings, essays, and more challenging tests and exams, as well as higher expectations of student work.

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high school prepThe mission of the mathematics department is to prepare our unique population of student-athletes for success in college mathematics and future real-world applications of mathematics.  There are two programs, one for middle school and one for high school students. The underlying theme in all courses is to build knowledge in algebraic and geometric thinking.  The middle school program is guided by the Saxon series and is a continuation of the Saxon series used in our elementary program. In grades six and seven, the Saxon program utilizes a spiral approach in developing mathematical and scientific thought.  The grade eight middle school course, Pre-Algebra, focuses on building strong algebraic skills, and concepts that are needed for success in Algebra I. A significant number of middle school students also follow a more accelerated track and complete Algebra I, or both Algebra I and Geometry, by the end of grade eight. 

The high school program is a traditional series beginning with Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra II.  These courses are designed for all students of all abilities and are the principal courses needed to meet the four math credit requirement for graduation.  These courses build and relate algebraic and geometric concepts, analysis, reasoning, proof, and real world applications. Graphing calculators are used daily in Algebra II.  Geometry students work with the Geometer's Sketchpad for discovery of the basic Euclidean theorems. Students who would like to expand and develop deeper mathematical thinking are guided to take either Algebra III or Pre-Calculus.  Algebra III is recommended for those students who wish to strengthen their Algebra II skills.  Pre-Calculus is recommended for students who have scored well in Algebra II and are ready for the complex abstract work that is the precursor to Calculus. Students at the junior and senior level who have completed these courses can take AP Statistics and/or AP Calculus.  These courses are taught at a college level and according to the College Board Standards. Additional homework and study time are required to be successful.  Students will take the AP exams in May. In addition to the Honors only sections of some courses like Geometry, Algebra II and Pre-Calculus, (these Honors offerings are dependent on student enrollment), all upper school Math courses, except the AP classes, have Honors contract offerings, which include additional material of greater depth and complexity, more challenging tests and exams, and higher expectations of student work

In all courses the focus of the math department strives to develop, strengthen and expand skills that encourage conceptual, abstract, and critical thinking in mathematics.

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IMG Academy’s Science Department strives to provide a current foundation in the elements of scientific method, theory, applicability and laboratory practice that will encourage the student to acquire an in-depth appreciation of the scientific enterprise. We explore the key role of science in human endeavor and practice a problem-solving, hands-on approach that allows the IMG Academy student to observe, analyze and apply solutions to the personal experience and progression to the global community. 

The curriculum offers two distinct sections: middle School and high School.  Middle school encompasses General, Life and Physical Sciences in preparation for high school.  High school is further delineated into the required courses of Biology and Chemistry and one elective. Courses are available in general, honors and AP Sections.  Students are encouraged to take four years of high school science.

Middle school General Science is a sixth grade course covering varying disciplines.  Seventh grade Life Science lays the foundation for high school biology, while eighth grade Physical Science combines introductions to both Chemistry and Physics.  High School begins with Biology as the ninth grade requirement.  This course expands on the foundation set in Life Science including cell theory, genetics, exploration of domains and kingdoms, ecology and evolution.  Tenth grade Chemistry expands on Biology, covering states of matter, the atom, the periodic table, acids and bases, reactivity and stoichiometry. Organic Chemistry is introduced in preparation for further courses.  Eleventh and twelfth grade courses encompass electives including:  Physics, Marine Science, Anatomy and Physiology, Environmental Science, AP Biology, AP Chemistry and AP Environmental Science. These courses provide a concentrated study furthering the required course content.  In these electives, students are expected to conduct and apply research to real-world situations. Additionally, the electives are offered at the honors level which involves more challenging problems, assessments and projects. The AP courses require prerequisite coursework and are exceptionally rigorous and challenging, culminating in the National AP Exam.  

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high school prepThe Social Studies curriculum offers core history subjects for grades six through twelve.  It is comprised of two main sections: middle school and high school. Middle school follows a progression of Social Studies classes. The core classes in order of progression are sixth grade World Cultures I, seventh grade World Cultures II, and eighth grade American History. Following this course work, students will engage in the following class progression: ninth grade World Geography; tenth grade World History; eleventh grade American History. These three courses suffice for the three course credits needed in Social Studies. The Middle School courses of sixth grade World Cultures I & seventh grade World Cultures II are preparatory and foundation setting for High School World Geography and World History. Eighth grade American History creates a preliminary understanding of High School American History and American Government. 

When a student reaches the 12th grade, they can choose from among several social Studies elective courses: a semester of American Government and a semester of Economics; Street Law; Psychology;  Politics and International Relations.  In addition to the core classes, there are a variety of electives and advanced placement/honors courses. AP coursework (AP American History and AP World History) is exceptionally challenging and requires prerequisites from core classes, including grade requirements and instructor permission.  It culminates with the National AP exam. Students are encouraged to take four years of High School Social Studies.

Some of the major learning skills that students will encounter in their coursework are critical thinking, primary/secondary source analysis, problem solving, writing skills, cause and effect relationships, synthesizing information, mapping skills, technology integration, researching, and oral/written projects. The goal of the Social Studies department is to develop these skills, engage students, and cater towards different learning styles through various teaching methods.  Students will relate the concepts and material presented to the world we live in and target examples in everyday life.  They also will create a multitude of multi-media products that reflect the development of technology skills in computer, audio and visual components and successfully generate an original product related to a historical theme.

The mission of the ESL program is to offer our non-native speakers the necessary tools that will help them adapt with a high level of ease and efficiency to the challenges of their new life at IMG Academy and in the United States of America. In coordination with the IMG Academy Language Center, a diversified curriculum has been developed over the years to turn our students into happy learners, critical readers and writers. The adaptation of our students, in spite of the challenges that this option may represent, is facilitated through partial immersion in mainstream classes. Thanks to these progressive levels, most of our ESL students successfully exit the ESL program at the end of two years.

The curriculum offers additional support as soon as an International student attends IMG Academy, as early as the Elementary School. At that level, the new students benefit from individualized sessions of intensive instruction which range from learning writing to expressing the basic needs of life in their new environment. The students are pulled out of their mainstream classes for 20-minute sessions, but a flexible schedule allows the ULC teacher to respond to urgent linguistic needs, and to design new groups of proficiency whenever it is deemed necessary. Total or near total beginners at the Middle school and High school levels attend the Intensive English program at the IMG Academy Language Center.  They attend three 60- minute classes per day and learn the essentials of English in order to be able to  attend IMG Academy’s full academic program.

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The ESL department seeks to continue offering the same support to Middle School students with an intermediate level of proficiency. The two classes of Integrated Studies develop fluency and accuracy in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Teachers also strive to develop the students’ critical thinking skills.  The students are regularly tested and may be exited to Middle School mainstream English classes at the end of their first semester.  Most students are exited at the end of their first or second year of ESL Middle school.  At the High School level, we offer non-credit classes, such as: Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking, and Grammar. Ninth, tenth  and eleventh graders with an intermediate or advanced level can be placed into two different ESL levels and will attend two classes of Academic Reading (I or II) and English Composition (I or II).

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The Department of Foreign Languages at IMG Academy consists of language teachers of French, Mandarin and Spanish. Emphasis is placed on teaching language, literature and culture of the subject area.  The teachers are dedicated to increasing students’ oral and written fluency to enable them to interact with native speakers and to continue language learning beyond the classroom.

The IMG Academy faculty and student body is home to a great diversity of international cultures.  The goal of the Foreign Language Department is to equip students with the intellectual and communicative tools necessary to live and interact effectively in a multilingual world.  The students are engaged through a wide variety of instructional resources and critical thinking activities that develop students’ ability to thrive in multicultural settings.

A carefully-designed curriculum maximizes learning and enhances preparedness for upper-level courses.  Middle school Spanish students have the option of taking Spanish A and B in a two year sequence, which is equivalent to one year of high school Spanish I.  Students who choose this option will enter high school Spanish II following successful completion of Spanish B.  Middle school Mandarin and French students follow a seamless entry into high school level classes upon completion of Mandarin I and French I.  Honors credit is given to students who complete the necessary honors requirements within each course.  Upper-level courses ultimately prepare students for college study.

Our Foreign Language teachers adhere to the 2011 Florida Next Generation World Language Standards for lesson planning and assess students using the four language benchmarks of speaking, reading, writing and listening. Our low student-to-teacher ratio allows teachers to customize lesson plans to the needs of the students based on athletic schedules and special learning needs, while also creating more opportunities for students to communicate one-on-one with the teacher. Critical thinking activities are incorporated into daily lesson plans, as are multiple intelligence strategies.

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high school prepThe Art Department at IMG Academy is composed of three full-time art instructors and a rotating artist workshop series. Currently, art at IMG Academy satisfies a required one high school graduation credit with honors status granted to students who show exceptional interest in the subject.  Middle School Art is offered as an elective. High School Art is divided into four areas of study: drawing, design, painting and printmaking. A recent purchase of computers and Adobe Photoshop licenses has allowed for a more comprehensive and up-to-date approach to teaching the design segment. The year is co-taught with each instructor teaching two of the subjects listed above. Both Middle School and High School Art courses are studio-intensive and encourage technical skill development, including two-dimensional applications such as. painting, drawing, design and printmaking. 

Understanding space and facility limitations the Art Department has made efforts to expand its offerings and exposure to three-dimensional art through a series of artist-run workshops--four to five peppered throughout the year. These workshops vary in duration from one to two weeks and give students an opportunity to work directly with local artisans. Past workshops included glass working, jewelry making, wheel-throwing and welding. Additionally, guest lecturers, photographers, graphic illustrators and fashion designers, are routinely invited to speak about their work. High School Art students are exposed to historical art movements through PowerPoint lectures, videos, discussions, research papers, and as supplemental material to projects. Middle School gains access to historical art movements primarily through contextual materials within theme-based projects. 

The Art department seeks to continue offering a dynamic and vibrant introduction to the visual arts and would like to create greater opportunities for continuation in the discipline. In addition to Art 101, highly motivated students with demonstrated accomplishments and abilities as artists can apply to take AP Studio Art, a College Board approved course with more independently-driven projects culminating in the creation of a professional portfolio.

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