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Teaching and Learning

Curriculum Intent
The year level Curriculum Overviews are available at right.
They provide an illustration of the content taught across key learning areas.
You can also access The Australian Curriculum website for further information.
Other documents are also available for perusal, such as:
·      the minimum time requirements allocated to each subject
·      problem solving strategies taught to students across the year levels
 Assessment
Students will be exposed to front end assessment where it is made explicit what the learning goals are for the unit of work. Students must have a clear understanding of what is valued and what is being assessed. This translates to teachers, demonstrating WALT (We are learning to...) and WILF (What I'm looking for...) in their daily lessons. Teachers will also use formative assessments to feedback into their planning. Pre-tests, diagnostics tests and formative assessment will ensure that the curriculum is differentiated to meet individual learning needs. This information is also used to direct intervention and additional resources. Each year level will have common assessment tasks and predetermined cut-offs. Our main goal of formative assessment is to ensure that the strengths and challenges of each learner are identified and acted upon.
Sequencing Teaching and Learning
Our students set high expectations to achieve and be active in the learning process. Central concepts to the teaching and learning process at Birkdale State School include multiple opportunities to succeed, high quality feedback to students (and indirectly back to teachers), front end assessment, effective use of ICT in learning experiences, use of exemplars, modelling, inclusion of higher order thinking skills (such as reflection), use of the assessable elements and use of collaboratively developed GTMJs (Guide to Making Judgements). With a strong emphasis on meeting individual needs it is about the teacher fitting in to the individual needs of the student not the student fitting into how the teacher runs their classroom. Consistency to our school means differentiating the curriculum for our students, not devising a ‘one size fits all’ philosophy.
Making Judgements
Teachers are supported to make consistent judgements through Year Level Moderation Meetings. Teachers will employ a range of moderation techniques including pre calibration and post cross checking methods throughout the year. Teachers have pre-determined cut-offs for assessment items if they are deploying tests. Teachers are required to use Assessment Bank Items to help ensure consistency of judgement with the QCAR Framework.
Feedback
Providing feedback is central to improving student learning, whether it is feedback to students about what they have been able to successfully achieve or to teachers about what their students already know and what they need to learn next. Feedback has to be focussed on front end assessment or learning goals that have been identified.
We believe that feedback to students:
ü  is timely
ü  focuses on what the student has done well
ü  is informative and purposeful
ü  is effective when students engage in self-feedback and peer-feedback
ü  is focused on the quality of student performance and not on the student
ü  gives specific information about what to do next
ü  challenges students to use higher order thinking
ü  requires students to take action and responsibility
ü  can be capitalised on when multiple opportunities are given to students. Link; Testing and Assessment


3rd Party App Usage
At the beginning of a new school year, parents/carers of students in Prep-Year2, may receive an invitation from your child's teacher to set up an account with a 3rd party app such as Class Dojo. This app will assist you to receive news about events, learning and experiences in your child's classroom. At teacher's discretion, this app may also be used to share photos, videos and messages through regular updates from the teacher, which give you the opportunity to see some wonderful classroom moments. Whole school stories and events that have taken place, may also be shared. Some classes extend the use of these apps to incorporate a behaviour system which complements our Responsible Behaviour Plan, as it encourages and rewards important skills and behaviours by giving children points which will show on your child's avatar. The app includes a messaging feature that allows you to send a message or instant feedback to respond to information that has been shared. Please note that this messaging feature should not be used to communicate with your child's teacher regarding personal issues or changes to routines, we politely request that all parents continue to use the standard procedure of communication through the school office or directly with the class teacher. Messages should not be sent outside of normal working hours (8:00am-4:30pm) and definitely not on weekends. Please do not expect a response to messages outside of normal working hours. Apps are only available to parents and children who give consent to share information on enrolment, as well as sign the school's 3rd Party Consent Form. Students whose parents do not consent to their information being used to create log in details are not allowed to access the specified programs.
Parents are reminded that they should not take images from 3rd party apps and post them elsewhere online. Breaching this requirement may lead to account suspension.