School Curriculum

Wilandra Rise Primary School provides a comprehensive curriculum based on the Victorian Curriculum.

The Victorian Curriculum F-10 is the new curriculum for Victorian schools that will be implemented in all schools from the start of 2017. It incorporates the Australian Curriculum and reflects Victorian standards and priorities. The AusVELS curriculum was the initial incorporation of the Australian Curriculum areas of English, Mathematics, History and Science into the Victorian Essential Learning Standards (VELS).

It should be noted that in any one classroom there might typically be a five-year range of achievement apparent. In an Australian Council for Educational Research study, Meiers reported that ‘the top 10% of students…in each year are working at approximately five year levels ahead of the bottom 10%’. This was more recently confirmed by a Grattan Institute report which asserted that ‘at any given year level there is a five to six year difference between the most advanced and the least advanced ten percent of students’.

Therefore, the Victorian Curriculum is not set out according to nominal year levels that equate to particular school grades but to developmental levels that point to current levels of achievement. At Wilandra Rise Primary School, our focus will be on personalising the learning for all students. The curriculum delivery will be planned in relation to the actual learning level of each student rather than their assumed level of learning. This is consistent with Vygotsky’s now widely-cited concept of the ‘zone of proximal development’.

The Victorian Curriculum Learning Areas Include:
  • The Arts – Dance, Drama, Media Arts, Music, Visual Arts, Visual Communication Design
  • English
  • Health and Physical Education
  • The Humanities – Civics and Citizenship, Economics and Business, Geography, History, Languages
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Technologies – Design and Technologies, Digital Technologies
The conceptual position that informs the structure of the Victorian Curriculum F-10 is based on Four Capabilities
  • Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Ethical
  • Intercultural
  • Personal and Social
While much of the explicit teaching of literacy occurs in the English learning area, it is strengthened, made specific and extended in other learning areas as students engage in a range of learning activities with significant literacy demands. Skills and knowledge apply across the curriculum and are not defined only within English, Mathematics and Digital Technologies.

In the Victorian Curriculum F–10, the knowledge and skills that underpin numeracy are explicitly taught in the Mathematics strands Number and Algebra, Measurement and Geometry and Statistics and Probability and reinforced and further exemplified in and across other curriculum areas. Through this process, students recognise that mathematics is widely used both in and outside school and learn to apply mathematical knowledge and skills in a wide range of familiar and unfamiliar situations. The proficiencies of Understanding, Fluency, Problem Solving, and Reasoning in Mathematics, the importance of literacy in each discipline and the now embedded nature of ICT across all learning areas, ensures that students apply these capabilities in all subjects.

For reporting purposes, Standards are documented, which most students are expected to achieve as they work through each particular level. Written reports are provided for parents throughout the year and uploaded onto Compass for parents to access at home.

The Victorian Curriculum provides the basis for curriculum planning and development. At Wilandra Rise Primary School, an inquiry approach to curriculum is used. Teachers, in planning teams, develop Inquiry based topics, which make links within and across the subject areas.

Specialist programs are provided in – Visual Arts , LOTE- Auslan, Physical Education, Music and Science.

Visual Arts/Technology
A visual arts/technology program is offered from Prep to Year 6. Specialist lessons are provided for all students. Art smocks must be worn. An old shirt with sleeves cut to size makes an ideal Art smock.

Arts - Music
A qualified musician provides an extensive performing arts program for students at all levels. Instrumental music lessons are offered for students Prep – Grade 6 by outside music teachers during school hours. Opportunities are provided for a range of musical experiences such as drama, dance, school choir and performances including an annual "Music Soiree" and a biennial Musical.

Physical Education (PE) and Sport
All students participate in an extensive physical education program. Classroom teachers will provide daily Huff and Puff sessions, which incorporate a 10-minute cardio, work out and a PE teacher will provide weekly skill development sessions. Junior classes also participate in a Perceptual Motor Program. Senior classes are involved in interschool sport, cross-country, athletics and swimming carnivals. Students need to wear runners on a daily basis.

A comprehensive swimming program will be provided for students at all levels. (based on interest and participation levels). Programs are designed to enable every child to learn to improve their swimming skills. Students are taught water safety skills and water confidence.

Wilandra Rise will deliver a Bike Education for years 3 - 6 and interschool sports for years 4 - 6.

Information and Communication Technologies (ICT)
We recognise the importance of providing opportunities for students to access the latest Information and Communication Technologies. Networked Lap Top computers and IPads are provided for students in all levels. Computers are utilised across all learning areas. Supervised internet access is provided to all students.

English as an Additional Language
English as an Additional Language (EAL) students come from a background where English is not the first language and includes newly or recently arrived students from overseas, languages other than English background and students born in Australia. A student is defined as being from a language background other than English, if either the student, mother or father speaks another language beside English.

EAL Curriculum
In the mainstream classroom teachers follow the Victorian Curriculum English scope and sequence and place emphasis on speaking and listening and vocabulary. Differentiation based on student’s language proficiency levels is a feature of the work in classrooms.

Instructional Capacity
Wilandra Rise Primary School has the capacity to employ an EAL Director to conduct additional English classes for identified EAL students. The EAL program will follow the inquiry topics building on vocabulary and background knowledge. There is a particular emphasis on Inquiry, speaking and listening and the teaching of vocabulary. EAL students in mainstream classrooms and identified as EAL on enrolment, are assessed on the EAL Continuum. Once a student has achieved all stages on the EAL Continuum (Years P-2 A Stages)(Years 3-6 B stages) the student may then move onto the Victorian Curriculum.

The excursion and incursion program complements the curriculum programs in the school and provides "real life" experiences for all students. Except for walking trips around the neighbourhood, consent via payment on Compass or written permission using our excursion levy form is required for all excursions. Please ensure that permission notes and payment is made to the school by the specified date otherwise your child will be unable to participate in the excursion.

Camping and Team Building Program
Year 2 students may participate in a sleepover at the school. Years 3 and 4 students participate in a two-night/ three-day adventure camp at a country location close to Melbourne. Students in Years 5 and 6 enjoy a three or four-night camp which complements the Inquiry Learning Topic being undertaken in the classroom.

All students are encouraged to actively participate in these activities as they provide excellent opportunities for team building, independence and communication skills.

All year levels will have some form of homework appropriate to their level. It should be stressed that homework is not always formal in nature. The school values the support of parents who regularly share reading with their children, make time for homework to be completed and take an interest in their child’s work.

Reporting Student Progress
Two formal interview sessions are organised throughout the year. At the beginning of term 1, an opportunity is provided for a three-way-conference (Including child, teacher and parents) to set learning goals and inform teachers of any background information that may impact on a child’s learning. It is also a chance for the parents to meet their child’s teacher. No formal assessment is discussed at this time. The second formal interview is used to convey more specific information on each child's progress after the mid-year report in June has been completed. Written reports are sent home throughout the year. A third interview is available, should this be necessary, after the distribution of the December student report. Teachers will contact parents throughout the year should there be any concern with a child’s progress.

Parents wishing to discuss their child’s progress at other times are welcome to make an appointment with the classroom teacher.

Sustainability Programs
Wilandra Rise Primary School is a partner with CERES and will support our school with the knowledge and skills to implement sustainable actions, professional development and resources for staff to embed sustainability in the curriculum and a tailored environmental management plan. The delivery model uses the ResourceSmart Schools Program to develop whole of school sustainability approach and to maximise using the school building and grounds as a resource for learning about sustainability.
ResourceSmart Schools is an award winning program and one of the longest running environmental education programs in Australia. The program provides a holistic approach to sustainability by integrating educational, environmental, social and economic outcomes in schools and early childhood centres. CERES facilitators will support teachers and educators towards achieving ResourceSmart Schools certification in energy, waste, water and biodiversity and working towards a 5Star Leadership!

A customized program has been developed to ensure teachers; students and the school community are supported towards more sustainable patterns of living.

This includes:
  • Induction on sustainability
  • Facilitation of staff and student green teams
  • Teacher Professional Development
  • Environment themed curriculum activities
  • School Environment Management Plan
  • Community Engagement
  • Phone, email and newsletter updates