Curriculum

 

Literacy

Heany Park Primary School is a thriving, harmonious and dynamic learning community made up of diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds.

We are a community of learners, committed to personal excellence in every respect. Our students are nurtured and challenged to maximise their learning potential. We are committed to developing students’ individual intelligences and capabilities, whilst mastery of literacy is at the very core of all that we do. We operate on a simple premise that all students can learn and succeed in acquiring the knowledge, skills and behaviours for life and work in the global knowledge economy.

At Heany Park Primary School we believe that language is the means by which we communicate with the world around us. It enables us to express our thoughts, ideas and feelings as we interact with others. English language learning is a continuous, lifelong process. All areas of Literacy Learning – Speaking and Listening, Reading, Writing, Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling – are covered during a daily two-hour Literacy teaching session.

In our literacy program, students are taught explicitly as a whole class, in small groups and one on one,. In reading sessions, a specific reading strategy or skill will be introduced through a text or big book, interactive whiteboard activity or game. Following this, students are grouped based on their specific learning needs. Each small group is scaffolded by the teacher and taught strategies to read and make meaning from text. While the teacher is working with a small group, the other learning groups are working independently to consolidate skills and strategies. At the end of the session, reflection on learning is shared with peers.

Our students reading ability is regularly assessed using the Fountas and Pinnell system which monitors both decoding, comprehension skills and strategies, fluency and pace.

Reading at home is strongly encouraged, not only because it assists in the reading development, but also as it helps to build confidence and provides time for a child to share their learning with their parents or guardians.

Writing

Writing sessions follow a similar structure. Various genres are explored to give students a broad and varied understanding of different methods in which to communicate their ideas. A writing strategy is taught and modelled. This aspect may include some shared or interactive writing as a class or demonstration and practise of a skill. The students then complete an activity in which they can practise that writing skill or strategy. Students may work independently, in small groups or with the teacher. Learning is shared to promote consolidation, confidence and achievement.

Spelling

Spelling strategies are also explicitly taught. Spelling, or Word Work, may relate to the reading and or writing focus and thus may form part of those particular lessons. Or, the spelling focus may be taught as part of a guided reading session.

Speaking and Listening

Students are encouraged to speak clearly and confidently in a variety of situations. They learn to listen attentively to their peers and teachers. Skills such as maintaining eye contact, voice projection, using notes or palm cards, will be developed through oral presentations and class and group discussions.

Library

Our Library is central to the school’s teaching and learning program in developing students as life-long learners. It has a comprehensive collection of resources that provides students and teachers with a wide range of up to date print, multimedia and electronic resources designed to match the student’s varied learning styles, abilities and interests. Its large non-fiction collection complements the School’s curriculum, while its fiction collection with its strong focus on quality literature works to increase student’s literacy skills and understanding of the world.

Students at our school do more than master basic language skills. They learn to express their feelings and opinions and to support their opinions with sound arguments and research.

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Robyn Davis

Literacy Leader

Numeracy

Numeracy is a highly valued component of the curriculum taught at Heany Park Primary School. Our goal is to set students up for success by providing them with the skills and strategies to prepare them for real-life situations and problems.

Mathematics lessons are taught daily utilising a variety of approaches, programs, technologies and hands-on materials to cater for all learning styles. Each Maths learning session is structured to include a mental maths warm-up activity, a main teaching activity with an explicit learning intention and time for reflection at the end. The content of lessons is driven by student data, gathered through standardised, pre-and post-testing. All components of the Victorian Curriculum in Mathematics (Number and Algebra, Measurement, Geometry, Statistics and Probability) are integrated and developed through problem-solving tasks, open-ended questioning, investigations and a variety of engaging games and activities. Tasks are differentiated to meet the individual needs of all students.

In addition, our school provides the following:

  • parent information sessions on how Maths is taught at Heany Park Primary School at all levels and how parents can support their children at home
  • a Numeracy Support Program for identified students in Years 4
  • the opportunity for students at Years 5 and 6 to be challenged and extended in Maths through participation in the Maths Olympiads program
  • Take-home Maths Bags that are full of hands-on materials, games and activities for students F – 2
  • access to an extensive collection of picture-story books for teaching numeracy concepts

 

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Penny Esposito

Numeracy Leader

Transdisciplinary Learning

At Heany Park, we employ an inquiry approach to our integrated curriculum. Throughout the year, students at each year level engage in a range of transdisciplinary units. These units explore big ideas that essential for students understanding of the world around them.

The units incorporate learning from a range of traditional discipline areas as well as development of transferable skills, such as research and communication skills.

The units are developed collaboratively by the teachers working in each year level to ensure the units are significant, challenging and relevant to the students they teach.

An inquiry approach to teaching and learning allows students to be immersed in a concept or big idea through carefully selected literature, artifacts and experiences. This process of immersion unlocks the students’ natural curiosity and provides them with the opportunity to express their thoughts and understandings about the ‘big idea’. These wonderings drive the students’ motivation to engage meaningfully in the unit and provide the teachers with information about their student’s current understandings, skills and knowledge, in order to provide learning experiences consistent with their needs. A combination of teacher and student driven exploration allows each student to build on their prior knowledge, make connections to new ideas and build their understanding of the concept. Throughout the units, both teachers and students go on a journey of discovery – where information and skills are obtained within a meaningful context.

 

 

 

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Transdisciplinary Leader

(PYP – International Baccalaureate)

 

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Visual Arts this term

Foundation:
Students will use the knowledge gained from their classroom inquiry unit on community to create finger puppets depicting members of their community and the roles they play. They will explore and learn about Japanese culture by looking at a range of their ancient plate artefact. They will then create their own plate using one of the themes e.g. Japanese plants, animals, waves or patterns. Students will glaze their earthenware clay bowls they made in Term 1. These bowls will hold fruits modelled from plasticine. Students at Foundation will be introduced to mark making using kitchen utensils.
Junior Years:
Students will explore the use of a range of medium and materials to create their artwork e.g. foil, wires, tinsels,
sequins and icy pole sticks. They will etch pictures on slabs of polystyrene and use them to make multiple prints. Students will study the work of Charles Conder’s ‘Bathing Huts’ as well as look at the huts found in Brighton before designing their own
drawing for the bathing huts which they will construct.
Middle Years:
With knowledge gained from their classroom inquiry on the impact of exploration and settlement of the Indigenous people, students will depict their understanding through art painted on tree barks. They will also look at and study early Indigenous artwork e.g. x-ray art and rock painting. Students will manipulate armature wire to create the shape of animals and use florist wire to weave beads, buttons and fabric into shapes. They will look at Bridget Riley’s Op Art and vari ous other Op Art designs before creating their own.
Senior Years:
The senior year level’s central idea on how people’s spiritual beliefs contribute to the diversity of society will be explored in the Visual Arts classes. Students will learn about the role of Gebongan and other smaller Balinese offerings such as banten and canang sari before creating their own interpretation, using plasticine. They will also discuss the origins and roles of totems from around the world and construct their own totem. As a lead in to perspective drawing, students at senior year levels will look at the works of Jim Lambie.

Digital Technologies – Computers

We currently have 24 interactive whiteboards installed across the school, with one in every classroom and in the library.On the school network there is a vast range of multimedia and interactive software. These include: 2Connect, MS Office 2010 suite and a variety of literacy and numeracy programs to support student transition through this Interdisciplinary Domain. The school has a cloud based site called Heany Park Cloud and can be accessed via a username and password at https://heanyparkps.sharepoint.com

This year there is a trolley of 30 iPads for Foundation and Juniors and 2 shared trolleys of 16 of Windows notebooks each for the Juniors, Middles and Seniors. We are a fully wireless functioning school.

The school is now an eSmart accredited school with a whole school community approach to learning to use digital technologies in a smart and safe way.

eSmart

Interesting Articles:

 

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Lisa Hill

Digital Technologies Leader

LANGUAGES – Indonesian this term

Foundation: The students are studying the names for family members and applying adjectives such as tall, big or small to describe them. They are learning to express likes and dislikes using colours. Revision of colours, numbers and known adjectives will be used in this term’s work.
Junior Years: The students are researching interesting facts about Indonesia after answering the question ‘What is Indonesia?’ They are currently writing their interesting facts in a book they have made. They will then move on to creating a dialogue using familiar vocabulary.
Middle Years: The students are currently learning to tell the time to the half hour and using this knowledge to write relevant sentences involving the class timetable. In collaboration with the class unit of inquiry – Where We Are In Place And Time – will be commenced shortly and we will look at migration along the Silk Road with spices from Indonesia as the catalyst.
Senior Years: Year 5: The students are continuing on their Amazing Race around Indonesia. The activities include performing a play about ordering a meal and researching traditions and customs, drawing similarities and differences between Indonesia, Australia and their own family and background cultures. Year 6: Students are completing the Spice Wars game and are currently being led by each team’s navigator through the Malacca Strait avoiding pirates. The students are logging their experiences and emotions throughout the simulated game. Both Years 5 and 6: In collaboration with the class unit of inquiry – Who We Are, which will commence shortly, we will be looking at the religions of Indonesia and their similarities and differences. Students may come home and ask you about your beliefs and how they influence your life.

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Heather Brown

Languages (Indonesian) specialist teacher

Library

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Library Administrator: Literacy PLT

Library Technician: Michelle Mitchell – pictured (Mondays & Thursdays only)

 

Performing Arts this term

Term 1 at Heany Park has been fantastic start and thank you to all the students, parents and staff for the warm welcome! I look forward in bringing more fun and musical skills to the students in this coming term. Foundation Year students will be introduced to many
celebration songs throughout the term, as well as learning the national anthem so they can sing it with pride during assembly every Friday and at different events. Later in the term, students will start learning an Australian dance routine, so Mum and Dad get ready to be their dancing partners at home! Junior Year will be exploring formal notation with crochets, quavers and rest and composing their own on the Orff instruments. We will also explore some elements of drama through skits and pictures stories to help build confidence in students and be able to express themselves through various ways. Middle Year will be starting on musical notations in term 2 in preparation for learning the recorder. Learning the recorder is an excellent way to lay the foundations of instrumental music as it combines theory and practice in a practical and fun way. It is also a great introduction to the woodwind instruments (flute, clarinet, oboe, saxophone and many more!), if the student is looking to learn in the fu ture. If there’s any queries with the recorder orders and purchase, feel free to contact me. Senior Year students in this term are focusing on songs from different cultures, performed through ensemble playing. Students will develop their reflective and re fining skills as they rehearse weekly on a wide range of repertoire. Some routines that we will be exploring includes, body percussion, dance and instruments (marimba, xylophone and drums). At the end of each song, students will be given the opportunity to add a ‘twist’ to personalize their routine. The choir will continue on Wednesday lunchtimes at 1:30pm for students in Year 3 – 6, who recently perfor med at the ANZAC day commemorative service and we hope to perform at more venues and events throughout the year. The percussion band will be commencing on the 16 th of May and run every Tuesday lunchtime at 1:30pm for any Year 5 – 6 students who are interested. The percussion band uses instruments which are rhythmically – based, such as drums, cymbals, cowbells and shakers, as well as the mallet instruments: marimba, xylophone and glockenspiel. Feel free to contact me for any information about the ensembles.

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Edwina So

Performing Arts specialist teacher

Physical Education this term

Students at Heany Park have had an enjoyable start to their year of Physical Education. They have had the opportunity to participate in a range of lessons that have focused on developing their Fundamental Motor Skills as well as an intensive Athletics Program. We were very proud to see many of our students representing our school at the District Swimming Carnival. It was wonderful to see so many students showing their dedication and commitment in representing our school in our new district and showing every one what caring, confident and enthusiastic students we have at Heany Park. Also during Term One, Foundation have established a good start to the PMP Program and the students are showing wonderful progress and cooperation. The conclusion of term was celebrated with the House Cross Country event, which was a massive success and a memorable day for all involved. We have had a huge amount of support and assistance from parents for many of last term’s events and we would like to take this opportunity to thank them all immensely, for without their support of such sporting events and school programs, they would not be possible. Term Two has started and the students are all involved in a range of different programs in Physical Education. Foundation are working on their fundamental motor skills, focusing on catching, throwing, kicking and bouncing, as well as discussing the important of being fit and healthy. The Junior Years have begun Term Two by participating in a fun and creative program using pool noodles! Students will have the opportunity to develop their fundamental motor skills, with a key focus this term on their throwing and catching skills. The variety of skills based activities and games will also assist in building on the student’s attitudes of co-operation, confidence, enthusiasm and integrity. Middle Year students will focus on consolidating their Ball Handling Skills, in particular throwing and catching. They have begun the term by participating in a ‘Tennis Ball Challenge’ where the students will complete a variety of ‘ball to wall’ catching techniques and combinations as their warm up to their PE Lesson. Students have really taken to the challenge and are keen to share their challenge successes as well as their frustrations!! Great persistence and commitment by all students involved! To conclude the term, we hope to have a selection of coaches come in and teach the Middle Year students the skills and rules of a particular sport. Details are still being finalised and we look forward to having more in formation to share in the coming weeks. Senior Students have concluded their Unit of Athletics and have begun moving onto new focus areas. The Grade 5 students are investigating and exploring the skills required to be successful during Invasion games. They are working in teams to develop their skills and share their knowledge and understanding of strategies. Grade 6 students have begun experimenting and practicing with equipment and tricks from the unit of Circus. This term the students will familiarise themselves with their chosen act, then design and perform with their group in front of an audience.

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Kym Ryan (F & 5)

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Prue Cunningham (1-4 & 6)

PE specialist teachers