IGCSE and A Levels at Brillantmont – Report from the Classrooms


IGCSE and A Levels at Brillantmont – Report from the Classrooms

Take a look at what the students have been working on this term as part of their IGCSE and A Levels Programme at Brillantmont International School.

From Chemistry to Art, and across all the different grades, students are hard at work and many of our classes have started new topics within their subjects. Whether they are preparing for exams, applying learned theory to practical experiments, or investigating important themes and events, there is a lot going on right now here at Brillantmont!

Laying solid foundations in Grade 9 History

Grade 9 International History, taught by Mrs Ester Nikyuluw, will take their IGCSE exams in 2021, however, they are already laying solid foundations in their learning. Students have been exploring the causes and key themes of WWI, focusing on the Moroccan crises of 1905 and 1911 and how these events impacted on pre-war Europe.

They had to summarise the Moroccan crisis in pods of three, and create a flow chart with the major events. Their flow chart had to include answers to the ‘a’ and ‘b’ type questions asked on IGCSE exams. In addition, History students have been developing their own political cartoons and pictures based on propaganda pieces of the time.

Grade 11 Chemistry experiments

In Mr Stephen Shaw’s Grade 11 Chemistry class, students have been conducting experiments into the neutralisation of acids, and exploring the principles of thermometric titration via data logging equipment.
This experiment provides an introduction to upcoming work on acids, bases and equilibria. Our AS level chemists at Brillantmont undertake a wide range of experimental work during their classes this term, which reinforces the theoretical aspects of the course.

Grade 10 Biology

Biology students have been learning how to immobilise enzymes by making alginate beads. This process is seen widely in manufacturing and food production: for example, in making lactose-free milk or allergen-free washing powder.

Science Coordinator Rachael Walker has been guiding the students through these experiments, as they learn to stabilise certain enzymes for reactions, without damaging their structure or function.

Autumnal theme in art studies

In the Grade 9 Art class, students have been making the most of the changing seasons with an in-depth study of Autumn leaves, including their colours and textures. The topic includes a look at William Morris, famous for his nature-inspired wallpaper prints and fabrics.

Teacher Mrs Angela McFall has been working with the class on making lino prints of leaves, which they will use to create interior design and textile patterns of their own.

Grade 11 and beyond at Brillantmont

Before the A Level courses, typically taken in Grades 11 and 12, our students take IGCSE exams to build their knowledge and get them ready for higher level study.

An A Level course takes two years of study. Year 1 = AS Level; Year 2 = A2 Level. AS + A2 = A Level. Typically, students require 3 full A Levels to enter university. The grades required depend on the university they are applying to.

There are many subjects our Grade 11/12 students can opt for, allowing them to focus on their own skills and develop knowledge in key subjects. We offer an extensive range of A Levels (two years) and AS Levels (one year), each designed to prepare students for university and their future careers.

Sarah Frei, Head of Admissions says, “Brillantmont has offered A Levels for decades and we prefer A Levels rather than IB. Why? Because we feel strongly that A Levels set students up for their futures, by allowing them to focus on the subjects they love and enjoy, rather than being held back by imposed subjects.

The level of depth required at A Level helps students develop independent research skills and a critical mind. A Levels are recognised all over the world and even give credit in US universities, since they are held in such high regard. What’s more, rather than doing Community Service to simply fulfil the needs of the programme, our students engage in actions such as Habitat for Humanity, the weekly Lausanne Soup Kitchen or the Lake Leman clean up, out of a genuine desire to help make a change in our world.”

Brillantmont International School

Founded in 1882, Brillantmont International School is one of the oldest boarding schools in Switzerland and is still owned and run by the founding family. The school welcomes boarding students and day students, aged 13-18 (Grades 8-12) from over 30 nationalities. Brillantmont students follow stimulating courses leading to internationally recognised examinations (British Checkpoint, IGCSE, A Level ; American High School Diploma, PSAT 8, PSAT 9, PSAT 10, SAT test, SAT subject test, IELTS).
Small class sizes ensure that every student has close teacher attention and is constantly challenged.

Students also enjoy the many extra-curricular activities available, which include Habitat for Humanity, Model United Nations, cooking club, events planning club, vocal club, rock band and numerous sports clubs such as rugby, volleyball, football, yoga, trampoline and many more.

If you would like to know more about our course content, or if you have any questions for our staff, please don’t hesitate to get in touch and we will be happy to answer your questions.

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