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P-6 Curriculum

Prep Year – Year 1

Prep lays the foundation for a child’s learning and on-going success at school. Our Prep – Year 1 Curriculum aligns the Australian Curriculum, age-appropriate pedagogies and assessment to maximise children’s engagement in learning and to enhance outcomes.
Prep – Year 1 are implementing the Australian Curriculum in all Learning Areas: English, Mathematics, Science, Humanities and Social Sciences, Technologies, Health and Physical Education and The Arts (Music, Visual Art, Drama, Media and Dance).

Shared Vision for the Early Years at WESS

As a team, we are passionate about fostering the development of the whole child (academic/cognitive, physical, social, emotional) using age appropriate pedagogies to improve learning outcomes and inspire our students to believe they have the capacity to achieve. We are committed to providing a learning environment where students are actively engaged in purposeful learning experiences. The Australian Curriculum clearly defines what is to be taught, and teachers use their knowledge of children’s interests, strengths and capabilities to identify the most effective ways to teach curriculum content. .

No Toy Policy

While we do not wish to dampen your child’s enthusiasm, we would appreciate it if toys were not brought from home.  Treasures can be lost or broken!  Please encourage your child to instead bring along his/her work (e.g. painting, drawing or craft) or an item of interest including photos, shells etc.…

Parent/Carer Involvement

Parents/carers play an important and valued role in the education of their child and so we welcome parent/carer involvement in the Prep program, whether it is:
         spending time in the classroom
         sharing skills, hobbies, interests or expertise
         sharing unique cultural backgrounds
         collecting materials that we may use, including – cardboard, paper, cards, magazines, wrapping paper, foil, cellophane, crepe paper, cardboard rolls, string, lace, ribbon, wool, buttons, material scraps, grocery bags, boxes, bottle tops, envelopes, soft woods, corks, cotton reels, vinyl, sandpaper, plastic containers and anything else that you may think is useful,
         assisting on excursions.
 

Year 2-6 Curriculum

At West End State School, our aim, in partnership with parents/carers and families is to ensure that everyday, in every classroom, every student is learning and achieving.

At West End State School we teach the Australian curriculum. To access complete year level curriculum overviews, learning area overviews and our assessment schedule, please refer to our section on the website “Teaching and Learning”.

Optimising every student’s opportunity to achieve to their full potential lies at the heart of West End State School’s commitment to all students. At West End State School all teachers plan and implement the curriculum in such a way that each child can access the curriculum and be successful learners.
Our shared understanding of individualized and differentiated education at West End State School involves knowing the learner through the identification of student needs and responding to them in a planned approach so they are challenged, supported and encouraged to reach their potential.
We offer many programs to support, extend and enrich our students. 

Music


Music is a strand of our Arts Curriculum. Classroom Music has a valuable role in our students’ learning. Students from P-6 have one lesson each week with the Music teacher, who provides them with opportunities to demonstrate some core-learning skills and understandings from the Arts Curriculum.  The music program is based on hands on learning, with all classes learning the ukulele and percussion instruments in addition to singing and music notation. 
Opportunities to extend these skills are provided in the Instrumental Music Program and in each of the choirs.  Evening concerts are held at the end of each semester to provide opportunities to gain performance skills. Dates for these are in the school calendar, found on the school website. 
For more information please refer to the Music Program Handbook
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Languages


West End State School is unique in that it offers 6 Language programs including French, Spanish, Greek, Japanese and Chinese , for all students in Years 5 and 6.  Academic English is offered to English as an Additional Language students who are already bi-lingual or multi-lingual and is a selective entry program.
Students in Year 4 have the opportunity to experience each of the Language Programs in a rotation of 6 week blocks. At the end of Year 4, they select a Language, to commence further study.
Language lessons are conducted on Wednesdays only.  Year 5 & 6 students have 90 minutes of lessons each week and the Year 4 students have 30 minute lessons.
The Language program aims to teach a variety of skills including:
         communication in the various languages
         linguistic awareness
         socio-cultural awareness
         general knowledge and
         learning-how-to-learn skills 
 

Health and Physical Education (HPE)

There are 2 components to the Australian Curriculum HPE program: (1) Personal, Social and Community Health and (2) Movement and Physical Activity.  The Personal, Social and Community Health strand is undertaken by classroom teachers.  For the Movement and Physical Activity program, there is one specialist Physical Education (PE) lesson per week for students in Prep – Year 6.  All students are expected to participate in learning through the HPE program. 
In Term 1 and Term 4, our PE Specialist Teachers conduct swimming lessons in our school pool. (Swimming lessons for Prep classes commence mid Term 1.)  Parent/Carer volunteers from each class are needed during these sessions to maintain adequate supervision ratios. In Term 2 and Term 3, the Movement and Physical Activity program includes ball skills, team sports, cross-country and athletics to explore movement concepts and skill development.  In swimming, students with particular cultural or religious beliefs are catered for outside the normal lesson plan. Please see the PE Specialist if this applies to your child. 
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Reading

Home Reading

Reading is always a priority at West End. Students are encouraged to read daily– personal books and library books that are age and level appropriate.
A sequential home reading programme for Prep - Year 3 is also an integral part of a student’s literacy development. Its purpose is to build confidence, fluency and comprehension of the text.  We ask you as a parent/carer to play an important role by listening to and encouraging your child’s reading development on a daily basis. Parents/carers will be required to sign the student’s Home Reading folder each night.
Prep – Year 2 readers are organised in Reading Levels from 1-30, with children progressing through levels after a wide range of text types are covered at each level.  The progression through the levels will be based on an individual Running Record Assessment done by the teacher at regular intervals. The books given, as Home Readers will be aimed at an easy level to promote confidence, fluency and the enjoyment of sharing a reading book.  This means that students will be reading home readers at their independent reading level, which is usually one level lower than their Running Record Assessment.
From Year 3 students move to a new series of books, which are levelled by reading age.  The teachers using a Running Record Assessment tool also determine their levels.  As these books are longer and more complex, students will borrow 3 books per week rather than 4.
         All students from Prep – Year 3 will require a Home Reading Bag, available from the school uniform shop in order to receive their books each week. 
         These bags are durable and usually last them throughout their primary school years.  They are also used for homework and notes.
         Home readers are processed through the library as part of their weekly lesson.
         Prep – Year 2 receive 4 home readers per week.
         Year 3 students receive 3 home readers per week.
         Prep students receive home readers from June.
         At times, home reading is arranged through specialist staff e.g. STLaN, EAL/D.
Years 4-6 students are encouraged to read for both leisure and research during home reading time.  They are able to borrow up to 3 books from the school library during their weekly borrowing time.
The Resource Centre facilitates the borrowing system for home readers.  The best contact for misplaced or lost home readers is library@westendss.eq.edu.au.
Teachers inform the library staff of students’ instructional reading levels and therefore any queries in this regard should be directed to classroom teachers. 

Guided Reading

Children bring to school and literacy a wide range of experiences and competencies. How, then, might teachers best support a literate community yet still meet the needs of individual readers? For Fountas and Pinnell, the answer lies in guided reading, which allows children to develop as individual readers within the context of a small group.  The remarkable effectiveness of guided reading is documented by forty years of research in classroom teaching.  Their systematic approach to small group reading instruction is now considered and effective strategy for achieving optimum literacy outcomes.
West End State School has adopted this research as their instructional support for teaching reading to students in Prep-Year 6.  All students receive a minimum of 2 hours of Guided reading instruction per week, with their classroom teacher and a trained teacher aide.