At St Joseph’s School Park Avenue we are beginning to implement flexible learning environments across our school. We currently have flexbile learning envrionments in place for Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6 students.
The aim of these spaces id to allow students the opportunity to learn through their preferred learning style and interact more directly and deliberately with the curriculum. Flexible learning environments are also spaces where students have the opportunity to work individually or collaboratively, whilst becoming are fully immersed in small group direct teaching lessons, targeted to the students individual needs.
Students grow in the ability to self-direct their own learning and are provide with a range of choices, including what task to complete and when, along with the style of furniture best suited to the task and whether to work alone or with others.
Flexible learning environments encourage greater student responsibility and accountabilities for learning, whilst developing the learner and indiviudal work habits.
Inquiry based learning
At St Joseph’s School Park Avenue we base our teaching and learning on an Inquiry Approach. This involves students being active participants in their learning. Inquiry Units cover Key Learning Areas such as English, Science, Health and Physical Education, SOSE, Technology, The Arts and Religion.
Inquiry based learning provides meaningful contexts for students to develop their own understandings. Teachers use Key Understandings and Focus Questions to lead the inquiry process. Throughout the term students are expected to demonstrate what they have learnt through participation in meaningful assessment tasks that illustrate key understandings.
Units of work are planned based around Primary Connections. Primary Connections is an inquiry based resource that links the teaching of Science with literacy. It aims to assist teachers and studentsto ask questions, investigate, observe and develop scientific explanations
St. Joseph's Park Avenue provides teachers and students with extensive hands-on resources to support these units of work.
At St. Joseph's, Park Avenue teachers base their mathematics units around the iMaths resource. iMaths is a program that provides real life investigations in order for students to apply their mathematcial knowledge in a meaningful way. Teachers additionally, use a variety of manipulative materials during their mathematics lessons to fully engage their students.
Technology plays an important part in children’s learning at St Joseph’s Park Avenue. We are fortunate enough to have large, Interactive Touchscreens in every classroom in the school. This means that teachers have the opportunity to engage students with multi-media demonstrations with instant access to a wide variety of visual resources.
We also provide each child in the school with access to a technological device. This begins in Prep and Year 1 where the children are using XO android-based laptops, along with iPads. Year 2 and 3 students have access to banks of iPads, whilst in Year 4 each child has their own Chromebook to use for the year. In Year 5 and 6, our students participate in a 1 to 1 program that has every student with their own Mac Air laptop that travels between home and school and becomes part of their normal learning equipment.
At St. Joseph's, Park Avenue our teachers use a wide variety of data driven assessments to clearly identify students' individual literacy strengths and areas for further development.
Teachers are then able to plan lessons tailored to each child's literacy needs.