Middle years curriculum
Year 5 & 6
The Year 5 and 6 curricula is based around the traditional disciplines of English and Mathematics and complemented by subjects including Humanities, Civics and Citizenship, Digital Technologies and Commerce. There is an extensive specialist program which encompasses learning in Art, Health and Physical Education, Music, Library and Science. Students in Year 5 also participate in a compulsory band program where each student is invited to learn an instrument of their choice which they play to perform in an ensemble. This program is the first stepping stone for many talented musicians who then go on to perform in a range of ensembles across the School.
Each student in Year 5 and 6 is provided with a touch screen tablet which allows them to integrate the 21st skills of collaboration and creativity into their everyday learning. As part of the Digital Technologies curriculum students are also introduced to coding software.
Both Chinese and French are taught to students in Years 5 and 6. Each student studies one language per semester before selecting one option to continue at the commencement of Year 7.
Students in Year 5 focus on developing an understanding of Melbourne, our capital city. They study the history of the city and what shaped it, paying particular attention to the gold rush in the 1850’s. During the course of the interdisciplinary project there are many classroom-based activities as well as those outside of the classroom. A highlight of the project is a visit to Sovereign Hill, Ballarat where students can see firsthand much of the history of our State. At the end of the year the students will visit Melbourne, stay overnight and visit many of the significant landmarks of our city.
Year 6 students focus on a diverse and connected world which takes a global view of geography and focuses particularly on the concepts of place and interconnections. Students learn about the diversity of people and culture around the world before the focus of study becomes global, as students examine Australia’s connections with other countries and global events. The Term 1 camp to Wilson’s Promontory allows students to enhance their geographical understanding of the world around them.
The Year 6 curriculum moves from colonial Australia to the development of Australia as a nation, particularly after 1900. Students explore the factors that led to Federation and experiences of democracy and citizenship over time. During Term 4 the study of Australian history and government culminates in a study tour to Canberra. The Year 6 Commerce curriculum gives students the opportunity to further develop their understanding of economics and business concepts. Year 6 Market Day is the result of a term’s study of economics and business whereby each student is responsible for the design, development and sale of a product with all proceeds being donated to local charities.
Year 7 & 8
During Year 7 and 8, all students study a core curriculum of English, Mathematics, Science, Humanities (History and Geography), a language (French or Chinese), Health and Physical Education, Music, Drama, Art (including ceramics), Design Technology, Religion and Values Education and Positive Psychology.
There are a number of interdisciplinary projects presented to the students during the Middle Years.
During Term 3, all Year 7 students participate in the ‘Night of Notables’ interdisciplinary project in which they select and research a historically important individual and then present their findings ‘in character’ during the Night of Notables evening. Students encompass the skills of researching, summarising and documenting the important and relevant information across all facets of the project. During Drama they also perform a duologue with a partner, where in character, they perform a short dialogue about their notable’s significant achievements. The evening is a highlight on the Year 7 calendar and allows students to showcase their learning in a multi-dimensional way.
The Year 8 core curriculum allows students to continue to enhance their learning across a breadth of discipline areas. Year 8 students are also responsible for delivering a Student Led Conference to their Mentor and parents during which time they discuss the learning that has taken place throughout the year. An e-portfolio is used to showcase the students’ achievements and parents are encouraged to be active participants in the conference. Another unique feature of the Year 8 program is the interdisciplinary project that takes place at the conclusion of Semester One. Students are given responsibility for selecting a small group of peers to spend the week designing, building and presenting a solution to a problem that they have been presented with. Recent topics include sustainable living and a bid for the Olympic games.
At the conclusion of Year 8 students are presented with a broad array of elective subjects for Year 9. Many of the subjects are for one semester only and include subjects such as Robotics, Photography, Sports Science and Commerce. Students may also choose to continue with the study of their second language if they wish to, but it is not compulsory after Year 8.