Upper School Highlights


About Upper School // MYP // DP // Co-Curriculum & Activities  //  Highlights  // College Counseling // Learning Resources  //  Sample Schedules

Making memories…

While classes, friends, sports, and the arts form the backbone of high school, there are a few special events that happen throughout the year.  Click through below to see some of the highlights High Schoolers experience at SCIS.

MYP Personal Project

All Grade 10 students at SCIS are required to complete a Personal Project. The Personal Project encourages students to practise and strengthen their approaches to learning skills, to consolidate prior and subject-specific learning, and to develop an area of personal interest. The personal project provides an excellent opportunity for students to produce a truly personal and often creative product/outcome and to demonstrate a consolidation of their learning in the MYP. The project offers many opportunities for differentiation of learning and expression according to students’ individual needs. The personal nature of the project is important; the project should revolve around a challenge that motivates and interests the individual student. Each student develops a personal project independently. MYP projects are student-centred and age-appropriate, and they enable students to engage in practical explorations through a cycle of inquiry, action and reflection. MYP projects help students to develop the attributes of the IB learner profile; provide students with an essential opportunity to demonstrate ATL skills developed through the MYP; and foster the evelopment of independent, lifelong learners.

Global University Fair

SCIS will be hosting a global univeristy fair every year, invitng more than 100 top universities to the campus. This will be an excellent opportunity to gather information about various universities and colleges and ask questions that will determine how well they match the students' goals and passions. This experience provides students the chance to discover, learn and experience what life is like at university. We encourage all students and parents in the Upper School to attend.

House System (Grade 6-8)

Inspired by the popular Harry Potter universe, students are divided into Houses.  The goal of the house system is to provide fun opportunities for friendly competition based activities.  Points are awarded by advisors and administration for contributions to the community, success in the monthly House Games, fundraising for populations in need, and a number of other (community building) games and activities.

China Trips

As international families know, no education is complete without international travel.  Every fall, students gather to embark on a one-week cultural enrichment adventure in China.  Each grade goes somewhere different.  But they all share in common fantastic first-hand experimental learning.

  • Grade 6 Student Trip:  Nanbeihu.  Students focus on teamwork skills and independence, as it is usually the longest period most of our students have spent away from their families.
  • Grade 7 Student Trip:  Yaolin.  Students Outdoor Education Introduction begins with skills such as kayaking, hiking, teambuilding, and camp crafts along with comfort zone challenges such as high ropes an rock climbing.
  • Grade 8 Student Trip:  Chengdu and Sichuan Province.  Students will get their first taste of expedition style traveling.  Students will learn to cook authentic Sichuan food, explore the city of Chengdu, hike the impressive Emei Mountain, and get a chance to interact with Giant Pandas.  
  • Grade 9 Student Trip: Fuijin, Xiamen.  Students learn about tea plantations and the beach/mountain ecosystem as they hike and explore the wilderness.
  • Grade 10 Student Trip: Inner Mongolia.  Students learn about the nomadic Mongolian desert culture while planting trees in and effort to restore balance to the delicate plains of the region. 
  • Grade 11 Student Trip: Guizhou Province.  Students live in local farm houses and work as local farmers.  Chinese agricultural life is experienced first hand as students build rice terraces, farm, and even fish with their hands.
  • Grade 12 Student Trip: Hainan Island.  The island atmosphere provides the perfect setting for students to work on their Group 4 IB DP Science Project.  After all the experiments are finished, students transition to working on their college applications and essays while of course squeezing in some time for the beach.

UN Day

The United Nations is an organization that recognizes and appreciates cultural and ethnic backgrounds. It promotes positive coloration of all nations and peoples of the world to work constantly towards world peace. SCIS can be considered to be like in a mini United Nations. Here we have the wonderful diversity of over 60 nationalities represented. We grow and learn from each other, share our heritages, and experience new adventures together in the classroom, on the stage, and on the playing fields. One of the favorite ways to share everyone’s culture is through FOOD. While the UN Day flag parade, the cultural presentations, and the dances are beloved, the highlight for most is all the delicious food found in the International Food Festival.

Winter Formal

A chance to dress up and dance the night away.  The Winter Formal is a dance held at a prestigious off-campus site.  It is open to grades 9-12.


School wide assemblies provide another opportunity for students to learn outside of the traditional classroom setting. With Shanghai being one of the centers of the 21st century world, SCIS has been fortunate enough to host a number of world famous guests including
  • Famous Guest Speakers: CEO of Coca Cola. NFL Patriot Cheerleaders.
  • Famous Authors: Richard Sobol.
  • Famous Performances: Wuhan Chinese Cultural Troupe.


Originally an American phenomenon, Prom has spread worldwide.  In Canada it is called “Grad; in Britain “Formal;” and in Ireland & Australia “Debs.”  SCIS does it slightly differently than all but still calls it Prom.  Held annually in the spring, it is an off campus dance held at a prestigious site.

Field Day

Twice a year, the whole school comes together for a fun Field Day. Important life lessons like teamwork, cooperation, and leadership are learned as students participate in a variety of age appropriate challenges and games.

Worldwide Travel Opportunities

With internationalism being part of the SCIS core, it is only fitting that students are offered opportunities at international educational travel. Whether it is to join the choir to go sing at Disneyland in Hong Kong or to join the science team to study the Wildlife and Ecology of South Africa, SCIS continually strives “to provide opportunities that are just right.”