The Western Australian Curriculum: English Pre-Primary to Year 6 is built around the three interrelated strands of language, literature and literacy. Together, the three strands focus on developing students’ knowledge, understanding and skills in listening, reading, viewing, speaking writing and creating. Learning in English builds on concepts, skills and processes developed in earlier years. Teachers will develop and strengthen these as needed.
Students engage with a variety of texts for enjoyment. They listen to, read and view spoken, written and multimodal texts in which the primary purpose is to entertain, as well as some texts designed to inform. These include traditional oral texts, picture books, various types of stories, rhyming verse, poetry, non-fiction, film, multimodal texts and dramatic performances. They participate in shared reading, viewing and storytelling using a range of literary texts, and recognise the entertaining nature of literature.
The range of literary texts for Pre-Primary to Year 6 comprises Australian literature, including the oral narrative traditions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, as well as the contemporary literature of these two cultural groups, and classic and contemporary world literature, including texts from and about Asia. Literary texts that support and extend Pre-Primary students as beginner readers include decodable and predictable texts that range from caption books to books with one or more sentences per page. These texts involve straightforward sequences of events and everyday happenings with recognisable, realistic or imaginary characters. Informative texts present a small amount of new content about familiar topics of interest: a small range of language features, including simple and compound sentences; mostly familiar vocabulary; known, high-frequency words and single-syllable words that can be decoded phonically; and illustrations that strongly support the printed text.
Students create a range of imaginative, informative and persuasive texts including pictorial representations, short statements, performances, recounts and poetry.
At Coolbinia Primary School, teachers design learning experiences to support students in developing functional and critical literacy skills. Staff are supported by administration in working to meet the literacy needs of all the students in their care.
When designing learning experiences, staff are guided by our shared English beliefs or ‘EDIT’
- Establish and sustain explicit expected standards.
- Demonstrate a developmental whole school approach and differentiation in teaching, learning and assessment.
- Integrate the curriculum to create authentic learning experiences.
- Teach according to the whole school literacy plan using the gradual release of responsibility model.
Coolbinia Primary School uses a whole school approach to Mathematics, focusing on improving numeracy outcomes for all students. Staff worked collaboratively to create the Whole School Mathematics Plan, used to guide planning and assessment. When assessing, team moderation sessions ensure that grading is consistent across every year level. To assist students in building their automaticity of learnt facts, each Mathematics lesson begins with a numeracy warm up, displaying flash cards of learnt concepts.
The Mathematics program for 2016 includes the launch of PRIME Mathematics, a world-class, whole-school program based on the effective teaching and learning practices of Singapore, the Republic of Korea and Hong Kong –
consistent top performers in international studies.
Coolbinia also provides subsidised licences for Mathletics – an online mathmatics program based on the Australian curriculum – enabling students to work at school or home on mathematics work set by their teachers.
Science is a learning area of particular interest and strength at Coolbinia Primary School, providing our students with ways to explore and gain a greater understanding of the world. Our Science programmes have an overarching theme of ‘Hands On. Minds On’. This theme highlights the importance of the students engaging in the learning area in order to expand their curiosity and willingness to explore and ask questions. This allows the students to then solve problems and make informed decisions whilst taking into account the social ethical implications.
Each term, we focus our planning, teaching and assessment on a different area of the Western Australian Curriculum: Science.
Term One: Earth and Space Science
Term Two: Biological Sciences
Term Three: Chemical Sciences
Term Four: Physical Sciences
The Biological Sciences is of particular interest to the Coolbinia Primary School community. Each year in Term Two, the school selects a theme to focus on. In 2018, the focus will be on Frogs. This links closely to the Cross-Curricular Priority of Sustainability. Teachers will be working with Dr Elaine Lewis, our Cross Curricular Coach to deepen student learning of Frogs and relating this to the frog habitats around Coolbinia Primary School.
In 2018 Digital Technology will be taught in all classrooms during Term One and Term Two. Bee Bots robots and Ipads will be used in the Early Childhood classrooms. Teachers are using the Bee Bots as part of STEM integration programs and Digital Technology while incorporating Literacy and Numeracy. Dash and Dot robots will also be used in Year One classroom. The students use a drag and drop programming app to control the robots, enhancing their problem solving and critical thinking skills.
Students really enjoy their work with the Bee Bot and Dash robots. They are developing coding and programming skills during these activities and are also working collaboratively and cooperatively with their peers. The engaging nature of these devices enables a multitude of skills to be reinforced.
Early Childhood students are also provided with opportunities to develop skills interpreting and presenting data and creating algorithms to solve problems. They will learn about components of Digital Systems, Hardware and Software and Cyber Safety. All of these are critical components of the Digital Technology Curriculum and are taught explicitly with engaging and exciting programs.
Gabby Quinn, our Digital Technology Early Childhood Specialist has also developed a Scope and Sequence for Digital Technology for Pre-Primary, Year One and Year Two. This document was created considering the Coolbinia Primary context and our multitude of resources. It provides sequential lessons that cover all areas of the Technology Curriculum throughout Term One and Two.
Humanities and Social Science (HASS)
The HASS school wide plan demonstrates that Coolbinia Primary School is successfully implementing the West Australian Curriculum. The HASS learning area comprises of four subjects; History, Geography, Civics and Citizenship as well as Economics. At least one term is dedicated to each subject. The table below illustrates how the different subjects are taught across the school.
By studying Humanities and Social Sciences, students will develop the ability to question; think critically; make decisions based on evidence; devise proposals for actions; and communicate effectively. These higher order thinking skills are highly valued at Coolbinia Primary School.
The Humanities and Social Sciences subjects provide students with the knowledge and skills they need to develop a broad understanding of the world in which we live and how people can participate as active and informed citizens in the 21st century.