About Our Learning

Learning Programs

 

At Sunshine Heights Primary School we offer a balanced curriculum in line with the AusVELS - The Australian Victorian Essential Learning Standards (AusVELS), with a strong emphasis on Literacy and Numeracy.

 

The Australian Victorian Essential Learning Standards (AusVELS) outlines what is essential for all Victorian students to learn during their time at school from Prep to Year 10. They provide a set of common state-wide standards which schools use to plan student learning programs, assess student progress and report to parents.

 

We have a whole school approach to curriculum development and planning in which teaching and learning practices are regularly reviewed and updated. Improved results in data show individual needs are being catered for.

 

Teachers at Sunshine Heights Primary School work collaboratively to plan lessons and monitor every students individual learning developments. To ensure we continue to enhance the delivery of our reading, writing, speaking, listening and mathematics programs we have employed School Based Literacy and Numeracy Coaches.

 

The School Based Literacy and Numeracy Coaches work with teachers in the classroom and during planning sessions to further improve their practice, and enhance learning outcomes. They also provide Parent Information sessions that focus on how parents can support their child at home.

 

At Sunshine Heights we have worked on aligning our teaching practices to ensure all students are provided with a consistent, challenging and highly effective learning program.

 

Our Reading program focuses on developing students that can not only read text but understand what they are reading include features:

  • Every classroom having a functioning library, developed by the students, that displays books attractively, and includes books of various genres, various topic areas related to children’s interests and learning in other curriculum areas, as well as books levelled, to assist children to make choices about “just right” books.
  • Teachers who build a collection of books to teach students strategies for reading.
  • Displays of favourite authors, and book recommendations.
  • A daily one hour focused reading block that includes a Tuning In (whole group) where strategies for reading are explicitly taught, purposeful independent reading, and reflection time (whole group).
  • The Tuning In utilizes good quality literature for reading aloud to children (interactive read aloud) and for reading with students (Shared Reading).
  • Ongoing support for children to make appropriate choices about “just right” books. Teachers monitor book choice to ensure readers are well matched to text.
  • Increasing student’s reading stamina. For example in the first year of school we expect our young readers to be able to read for a minimum 15- 20 minutes by the end of third term. We expect from early in the school year that our middle classes could expect to begin with 25 minutes of Independent Reading building to 30 minutes by the end of the first term. Our senior students would be expected to read independently for 30 – 45 minutes daily.
  • Teacher’s conferencing with students. This includes all students having a Reading Journal, where teachers record goals and students reflect on and respond to their reading.

 

Features of our Writing program which focuses on teaching students to become writers include:

  • A daily Writing Block that includes a Tuning In (whole group) where strategies for writing are explicitly taught purposeful Independent Writing, and Reflection Time (whole group).
  • Students having access to a variety of writing tools (e.g., pens, variety of paper, staplers, notebooks, folders, etc) as well as a variety of appropriate dictionaries and thesauruses.
  • Teachers building a collection of books which are used to teach author techniques and/or craft.
  • Word walls so that high frequency words taught can be displayed alphabetically to support writers.
  • Focus on increasing writing stamina. For example in the first year of school we expect our young writers to be able to write for a minimum 15- 20 minutes by the end of third term. We expect our senior students to write independently for 30 – 45 minutes daily from early in the school year, and our middle classes could expect to begin with 20 minutes of Independent Writing, building to 30 minutes by the end of the first term.

 

Features of our Mathematics program which focuses on teaching students to become mathematicians and problem solvers include:

  • A daily minimum one hour lesson that includes a Tuning In (whole group) where strategies for the lesson focus are explicitly taught, independent/group time and reflection time (whole group).
  • Students having access to a variety of mathematics equipment that is stored in the classroom for easy access.
  • Maths walls - to support students with what they are learning.
  • Focus on ensuring students understand what they are learning.

 

Our exemplary programs include:

  • Reading Recovery
  • ICT (Computers)
  • Visual Arts
  • Physical Education & Sport
  • Intensive Swimming Program
  • School Based Speech Pathologist
  • Transition Programs
  • Intervention Program
  • Student Leadership Program
  • Camps & Excursions
  • Integration Program
  • Values Education Program
  • Enrichment Programs
  • Commonwealth Bank School Banking Program
  • End of year Concert
  • Footsteps Dance company
  • SPARKS reading program