Curriculum System

What Do We Learn?

We offer 「Disciplinary Courses」, 「Featured Courses」 and 「Moonshot Projects」 to promote learners to achieve rigorous academic learning and comprehensive quality development and eventually help them become lifelong learners and active participants in society.

Disciplinary Courses

Based on the school mission, Moonshot Academy has developed a bilingual curriculum that is mainly based on National Chinese Curriculum Standards, referring to and passing the AP international curriculum system certification, and balanced Chinese characteristics and the admission requirements of overseas universities.

 

Disciplinary courses are mainly in projects and seminars, using a combination of online and offline learning scenarios. On the basis of meeting the academic ability required by the University, they promote learners to think about the links between subject knowledge, personal life and the real world, and constantly cultivate learners' ability of autonomous learning and teach for not teaching.

 

Moonshot Academy has six divisions and two centers, providing a wide range of subject choices including core and electives to help learners build a solid academic foundation.

 

The disciplinary courses of Moonshot Academy adopts the class-selection system, learners choose courses difficulty level according to their academic level. The course numbers 1001, 2001, 3001, 4001 correspond to the course difficulty of grades 9, 10, 11 and 12; 5001 corresponds to AP difficulty and 6001 corresponds to post AP difficulty.

 

Moonshot Academy offers a total of 18 AP courses and AP Capstone Diploma Program.

Featured Courses

Moonshot Academy's Featured Courses consist of courses in four areas: Self-awareness, Systems Thinking, Introduction to the History of Chinese Culture, and Western Philosophy. They are required courses for all learners.


We hope to support learners' further development in self-awareness and systems thinking through Featured Courses, so as find their bearings and stay confident in the changing world.

Moonshot Project

The Moonshot Project, an extension of the disciplinary curriculum, encourages learners to use their disciplinary knowledge to systematically solve real-world problems.


The Moonshot Project consists of the Sustainable Development Project (SDP) and the Capstone Project. The SDP is designed for lower grade (Grade 9, Grade 10) learners; the Capstone Project is designed for upper grade (Grade 11, Grade 12) learners and covers academic research, incubator, and arts.

How Do We Learn?

In Moonshot Academy, we comprehensively practice competency based education and provide a curriculum that not only includes knowledge, but also cultivates core competence. Courses in Moonshot Academy have three characteristics:

Emphasis on Cognitive Skills

Moonshot Academy actively cultivates the cognitive skills of learners and trains the skills of 「input-processing-output」 while emphasizing the entire process from 「acquiring academic knowledge」 to 「the ability of exploration」.


Input: The curriculum of Moonshot Academy requires extensive reading, which constantly trains learners to quickly capture, analyze and synthesize valid information. This 「input」 builds a solid foundation for subsequent learning and output, which is essential throughout the learning process.


Processing: Most courses in Moonshot involves with reflection. After a period of study, learners may experience a change of their previous perceptions and a new perspective may emerge. Since such changes only occur in the process of thinking, Moonshot Academy hopes to make learners consciously aware of and demonstrate the process of such changes. Thus, whether it is the revision of learners' assignments or the learners' reflection reports after completing the project, such 「processing」 will be visualized, which allows teachers to keep track of the learner's thinking process simultaneously and assist them in a more specific way. 


Output: Moonshot Academy provides a variety of learning tasks as outputs, covering writings, speeches, and prototypes, to comprehensively help learners reach the last step in the closed-loop of learning and improve their cognitive abilities.

Focus on Authenticity

Unlike exams, real problems are often ambiguous, full of constraints, limitations, and a variety of unpredictable surprises. And solutions could vary significantly. The ability to solve real problems is also the core of the 「active, compassionate」 part of the Moonshot Competency Model.


Moonshot Academy is devoted to developing learners' systematic problem-solving abilities involving 「real societal issues」:


Our economics guardians (in Moonshot, teachers are called guardians) will comment on recent topics and issues in the classroom. They would explain the logic behind some phenomena from the perspectives of economics while combining subject knowledge to show learners the real embodiment of knowledge in life. Our mathematics guardians will use real problems as a guide to design course topics, encouraging learners to collect information and do modeling to complete the test questions. Our project coaches will focus on a real social problem, constantly guiding learners to use the subject knowledge to solve practical social problems, create social values, and promote the development of society in a positive direction.

Apply Performance Assessment

Traditional examinations = knowledge = what learners know

Performance assessment = ability = what learners can do with what they know


Performance assessment is an evaluation of 「what can be done」 by looking at 「what is done」. If the learner's goal is to learn basic facts and skills, then traditional tests and quizzes are generally effective assessments. However, when the learner's goal is to learn to know what they can do with what they have learned, they need to be evaluated on more complicated performances to see if their goals have been achieved.


In our courses, guardians will design different types of performance assessments for different competencies. Currently, there are four types of performance assessment tasks in a learner's profile.


  • Textual Analysis: Learners will read a text closely and analyze it with detailed textual evidence.
  • Argumentative Writing: Learners will 「take a position on an issue or topic and explain and support the position with research from reliable and credible sources」.
  • Exploration Report: Learners will formulate a question that can be explored by scientific, mathematical, or social investigation, and recount the progress and conclusion of studying it in the form of a report.
  • Creative Expression: With their critical and creative thoughts, learners are expected to investigate and discuss topics related to art traditions and their personal life through the medium of art forms. They should be able to communicate their thoughts and demonstrate their understandings of art thoughts and practices.

Defense System

In competency based education, defense system supports learners to authentically present their phased learning achievements, summarizes and reviews their learning development, which is a very important academic activity in each academic year.

Defense System

Moonshot Academy is committed to competency based education with competency development at its core and aims to support our graduates to succeed in college, future careers, and life. As such, all Moonshot Academy graduates are required to have a complete learner graduation portfolio, which consists of a series of pieces of work produced by the learner during their learning experience at Moonshot. This portfolio includes textual analysis, argumentative writing, exploration report, creative expression, and summaries of the learners' exploration of their learning and development at each stage of their academic courses and projects based on performance-based assessment.

 

Each spring semester, Moonshot Academy conducts a competency defense for all learners. It is a very important academic activity for both Moonshot and all learners in each academic year.

 

It encourages learners to accumulate their works in their portfolios at each grade level, provide a vivid representation of each learner's learning outcomes, and systematically demonstrate how much they have achieved at each grade level. At the same time, the specific format of the defense can effectively deepen learners' reflection on their learning outcomes and self-growth, and significantly help learners win others' trust through a presentation.

 

A quality defense also provides an opportunity for all teachers to share a common understanding of the expectations and requirements of expressive assessment and to calibrate the rubrics for evaluating learners among themselves.

Defense timeline

  • Grade 9 learners complete their project presentations and observe the senior learners' responses.
  • Grade 10 learners complete the Track defense and clarify their professional development at the senior level.
  • Grade 11 learners complete the Target defense to clarify their options for the next stage of the college application.
  • Grade 12 learners complete the Moonshot defense and are approved to graduate.