Curriculum

Learning at Blair Athol North B-7

BANB7 educators encourage all children to be lifelong learners who are curious about the world around them. Our curriculum and daily learning support the belief that all children are competent and capable to develop the skills necessary to successfully engage with an ever-changing global environment.

We are guided by the Australian Curriculum framework. This framework supports educators deliver high quality teaching including purposeful and engaging learning that develops learners’ literacy, numeracy, information and communication technologies skills Birth to Year 7.

Rich and Diverse Cultural Backgrounds

Many of our families at BANB7 come from a variety of cultural backgrounds, making our school an exceptional place to learn and work.
Many of our children speak an additional language other than Standard Australian English and have parents/caregivers who identify with another culture.

Our educators have extensive experience in teaching literacy and individualise learning for children who require extra support. The ongoing collection of assessment assists educators plan for differentiation and identify learners who need timely intervention.

Literacy

Our approach to literacy at BANB7 is based on the Big 6 of Reading. Learning to read is very complex. It involves both learning to read words (decoding) and learning to make meaning from texts. World-wide research agrees there are essential skills people need to become effective readers. These skills are integrated into the Big 6 components that make up our daily literacy program at BANB and are planned for throughout the school day.

Oral language

Oral language develops naturally from when children are born and continues throughout their lives. It involves both listening and speaking for reasons such as: conversing with people, understanding instructions or information and engaging in questions.

Oral language is also important for writing. Talking about their experiences helps children organise their thinking which they can then transfer into writing.

Phonological awareness

Phonological Awareness develops as children focus on the sounds of speech. When children play with the sound of speech, rhythm, rhyme, sounds and syllables they demonstrate an awareness of the phonological element of rhyme. Phonemic awareness is a subset of Phonological awareness where children learn to map out sounds that match letters (reading and spelling). For example, if children can sound out each individual sound (phoneme) in a word (c/a/t) then they will be more successful at blending to make new words or breaking words up (segmenting) to spell them.

Phonics

Phonics involves recognising the correspondence between sounds and letters. At BANB children are taught to read and spell using the 44 phonemes and the 72 graphemes of Standard Australian English.

Beyond Phonics (Spelling)

Word study, including phonics, spelling and vocabulary, is provided through a sequenced and individualised program called Words Their Way.

Once learners have developed phonological and phonetic skills, they begin Words Their Way and systematically continue this program throughout primary school. This well scaffolded program allows for a consistent approach to spelling instruction across the school. High frequency (Sight Words) words are taught and revisited continuously during daily Writing.

Vocabulary development

Vocabulary is key to reading for meaning. If children know the meaning of a word, they are more likely to be able to read and make sense of it. Vocabulary can be learned through repeated exposure to new words in conversations, listening to stories, reading and through the media. When children are being read to regularly, their vocabulary increases.

Fluency

Fluent readers understand and make meaning of the text as they read. If children are using too much energy on decoding unfamiliar words, then their fluency and comprehension will suffer.

Comprehension

The end goal of reading is comprehension. After all this is why people read! Good readers understand the purpose of their reading and adjust their reading strategies accordingly.

Numeracy

Maths is learnt sequentially just like children learn to crawl before they walk. At BANB LAs plan for learning using the Big Ideas in Number. The order of the Big 6 ensures learning is mapped so children master concepts and skills before moving on.

Trusting the count means that learners can use and represent the numbers 1-10 flexibly. With place value, learners see 10 ones as 1 ten and are able to work fluently with counts of tens and counts of ones independently. When learners use multiplicative thinking, they are able to move beyond an understanding of multiplication and division as repeated addition and they are able to access different efficient strategies for multiplication and division. Partitioning is another aspect of multiplicative thinking where learners make connections to fractions, decimals and percent. When learners understand proportional reasoning, they can represent numerical quantities in a variety of ways (e.g. graphs) and can solve problems.

BANB7 IT and DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES

BANB7 is well placed to provide students with access to a wide range of digital technologies designed to enhance creative and innovative problem solving across all curriculum areas.

All Year 6 and 7 students have 1:1 iPad access and studios can utilise sets of MacBook laptops and iPads to support their learning.

Our Specialist STEM sessions allow students to communicate, collaborate and think critically through using a range of digital technologies including:

  • Spheros
  • Makey Makeys
  • Ozobots and ProBots
  • 3-D printers
  • Arduino controllers
  • VR/AR Kits

At BANB7 students learn to use digital technologies effectively, ethically and productively as they prepare to thrive as powerful and dynamic learners in the future.

BANB-BARISTAS

Operating since 2016, the BANB-BARISTAS are a student-led enterprise that caters for our school and wider community. Students joining the initiative are trained as baristas and are given opportunities to develop their hospitality and catering skills in a collaborative and supportive team environment. The BANB-BARISTAS enterprise is fully self-sufficient and raises money for the end of year student graduation, as well as supporting a range of other initiatives around the school. Coffees, Hot Chocolates and fresh home-made ‘treats’ are available daily in the Red Neighbourhood – come in, say hello and grab a quality beverage or two from our friendly BANB-BARISTA team.

BANB7 – Media Arts Lab

Students at BANB7 have access to a fully-equipped and functioning TV Studio and Podcast recording space where content can be created, edited and published for not only for our school community but a potential global audience. With a large green screen, multiple cameras, an editing suite, digital DJing equipment and music production hardware all within a dedicated learning space, students at BANB7 have the opportunity to develop their understanding of the contemporary Media Arts landscape while exploring creative and innovative ways to share their learning and tell their unique stories.

Intensive English Language Program (IELP)

Our Intensive English Language Program (IELP) provides intensive English language support for students from 5 to 12 years of age with specialist teachers, Interpreters and Bilingual School Services Officers (BSSOs). Classes are small and students are taught the Australian Curriculum while focusing on learning English. Students generally stay in the Program for up to 1 year, or longer if needed. They are helped to integrate into mainstream classes and when they are ready to exit the Program a carefully planned transition program is organised so students can successfully continue their education in their local school.

New arrivals students who have limited or minimal English language are eligible to enrol in the program if they enrol within 12 months of arrival in Australia, or 18 months in the case of students entering reception or year 1. Visa and passport details are required at the time of enrolment because some categories of temporary visa holders are not eligible for the program.

Our program offers transport assistance for some students who:

  • have an eligible visa sub-class
  • are under 10 years old and live more than 1.75 kilometres from our school.
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