Arts at the ISH

Arts play an important role in a holistic educational concept and are therefore mandatory for all students in Years 7 - 11.

All students study Drama, Music and Visual Arts in Years 7, 8 and 9. In Years 10 and 11 students must take at least one of the Arts subject. In the IB Diploma Programme of Years 12 and 13, Arts are part of the electives group.

ISH students go on to study Art and Design or Performing Arts at colleges all over the world in order to pursue a career in interior, graphic, web, or industrial design. Advertising, fine art, publishing, fashion, photography, architecture, film, television, as well as many other related professions are pursued.

Visual Arts

Visual ArtsThe Visual Arts Department offers comprehensive Art education to students across the MYP and IBDP Programme, inspiring students to become independent and creative communicators and life-long learners.

Visual Art is a compulsory subject in Years 7-9 and an option from Year 10 onwards. The department offers broad facilities and a range of expertise among our teachers, giving students a chance to experience and acquire a wide variety of skills and techniques.

Visual Arts at MYP introduces the student to a range of media and a variety of approaches that follow on and develop through Years 7, 8 and 9. The subject is delivered through projects and units, some of which are inter-disciplinary.

The range of media offered include: ceramics, painting, drawing, printmaking, 3D and digital media. Students are taught to develop ideas and solutions for their own art works, recording their own progress through the use of the Process Journal. The work is derived from a number of sources including the observed world, Western and non-Western cultures and, of course, from the rich and diverse imaginations of the students themselves.

In Years 10 and 11, students are guided through a variety of projects designed to allow them to explore and develop an increasingly independent approach in their own creative enquiry. The Process Journal is a key component in the documentation of research, creative thinking and ongoing reflection and evaluation; this also includes the teacher’s written comments. At least one trip to a museum or gallery takes place providing an opportunity for a critical appreciation.

In IBDP, throughout Years 12 and 13, students work increasingly independently on developing their own work, using a range of media of their choosing. The course encourages students to challenge their own creative and cultural expectations and boundaries. It is a thought-provoking course in which students develop analytical skills in problem-solving and divergent thinking, while working towards technical proficiency and confidence as art-makers. In addition to exploring and comparing visual arts from different perspectives and in different contexts, students are expected to engage in, experiment with and critically reflect upon a wide range of contemporary practices and media. The course culminates with an exhibition of the student's work, curated by the students themselves.


MusicMusic is offered at both Standard and Higher level in the IB Diploma Programme.

The IB music programme is designed to promote greater awareness and understanding of both the power and variety of musical experiences for those who have a general interest as well as students who intend on continuing further education in music.

The Music Department introduces students to many aspects of music from many times and places giving them a solid basis from which they can develop further interest, understanding and appreciation of this art form.

The basic areas in Music are:

  • Appreciation - students are presented with a broad range of music to develop their personal taste and awareness of different music styles
  • Knowledge - music theory, notation, basic notion of style, basic notion of instruments
  • Performance - students are encouraged to enjoy music making in several ways (vocal and instrumental)
  • Listening - developing students’ listening skills in all of the above topics
  • Creating – students will create music in many different ways: through improvisation and through planning, individually and in groups, based on theory and based on aural skills



The IB MYP drama course is designed to enable students to learn about and experiment with a wide range of conventions, genres, practices and texts from different cultures, places and times. Throughout the course students are encouraged to develop their creativity in a variety of ways, through research tasks, devised performances, script work, essay writing, independent and group work, developmental work, reflections and evaluations, design tasks and technical aspects of theatre.

These areas are explored in even more detail in DP Theatre, which is offered at Standard and Higher level. In DP Theatre students explore various World Theatre practices, complete further study in the technical elements of theatre and can pursue a specialist area of interest such as directing, lighting or acting.

Alongside learning about theatre, our students learn through theatre; exploring issues, feelings, points of view and global concerns.

Among the skills developed through theatre are: communication, confidence, creative thinking, information processing, reasoning and enquiry.

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