Years 7–9 (ages 11-14)

The curriculum for our Years 7-9 students is our own YCIS framework, based on internationally recognised learning standards from the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, and Australia, aligned with best educational practices and tailored specifically to our international context, with an extended focus on Chinese language, global citizenship, international-mindedness, student wellbeing, and the arts. Our holistic international education is designed to nurture and prepare our middle school-aged students with the knowledge, skills, concepts, and understandings aimed toward becoming caring global citizens. These important years fully prepare students both academically and socially for the increasing challenges of the Upper Secondary years to follow.


Two Years 7-9 girls in class at YCIS Shanghai

Chinese Language and Studies Programme

In YCIS’s globally recognised Chinese Language and Culture Studies Programme, all students’ language and cultural competency skills are heightened and refined. Our Chinese Language courses are divided into two sections: Chinese as an Additional Language (CAL) and Chinese as a First Language (CFL). Students are grouped into different classes according to their language background and their particular needs, helping them to develop their abilities in Mandarin Chinese to a greater extent during their daily language lessons. Furthermore, Secondary students deepen their connection with the culture of their host country while participating in regular cultural activities and their weekly Chinese Culture Studies courses.


An art teacher at YCIS Shanghai with a group of secondary students

Student Wellbeing

The Student Wellbeing programme for students in Years 7-9 helps foster positive values and principles and educates the whole child. Through lessons and a wide-range of activities, students gain practical knowledge and skills to help them live healthy lives and learn to manage any moral, social, and cultural challenges that they may face as they approach adulthood.


A group of secondary students developing their own propotype with multi-media software

Art Programme

At YCIS, we believe that art and culture should play an essential role in the life of our students, both inside and outside our classrooms. Through our Secondary Art courses, students become knowledgeable about different materials, processes, and practices, and engage confidently with art, craft, and design, both from the contemporary world as well as that of different cultures and periods of history.


A boy and a girl in a secondary school musical at YCIS Shanghai Century Park Campus

Music and Drama

In our Performing Arts programmes, our Years 7-9 Secondary students focus on listening, performing, and creating. They are encouraged to discern music from different styles, genres, and parts of the world. Throughout the year, YCIS students participate in a wide-range of music and drama activities and learn to evaluate their own and others' contributions. Our students are encouraged to work both individually and in groups, with the aim of gaining confidence as creators and performers. Our Secondary campuses also offer a wide-range of opportunities for Performing Arts as Co-Curricular Activities, including instrumental and vocal ensembles, orchestra, rock bands, recitals, as well as plays and musical theatre productions.


A girl playing rugby at YCIS Shanghai

Physical Education and Sports

In our Physical Education (PE) course in Secondary, learning areas are interrelated and contribute to the development of healthy, active lifestyles for students. Our students also build interpersonal skills such as communication and conflict resolution, and decision-making skills for tactics and strategies. Our Secondary campuses also offer a wide-range of sports teams, and students have the opportunity to compete in leagues against other international schools, both locally and across China.


A large group of year 7-9 students on a trip in rural China

Trips and Excursions

In addition to regularly scheduled class field trips, YCIS students in Years 7-9 travel to key cultural areas in China through our Education Outside of the Classroom (EOTC) programme. This programme helps students gain cultural appreciation through a series of trips to different regions in China, with recent locations including Xi’an, Shandong, and Fujian.

More than just school trips, EOTC trips help to broaden YCIS students' understanding of their host country, and lead to increased cultural respect, while also helping the students develop a sense of purpose and perspective in their own lives. As YCIS students study Chinese language in class every day, these real language and cultural experiences are essential to helping them apply and reinforce their well-rounded education. These trips also include learning activities that reinforce and extend skills and concepts from our Lower Secondary curriculum.


For more information about the Years 7-9 programme at YCIS, or to visit our campuses, please contact our Admissions team here.

To learn more about our Year 10-11 (IGCSE) programme for children aged 14-16, please click here.

To learn more about our Years 12-13 (IBDP) programme for children aged 16-18, please click here.

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