Learning Communities | Middle
Middle Years Learning Community (Years 3 & 4)
Following on from the early years of schooling, students in the Middle Learning Area, years 3 and 4, have a strong focus upon skill and knowledge application to build on and extend the skills learnt within those early years.
Within our Literacy block we facilitate a a combination of whole class, small group (like and mixed ability) and individual learning experiences in Reading, Writing and Speaking and Listening. Our approaches to spelling are broader than phonics-word origins, word relationships, and visual strategies.
Our students in the middle learning area have a heavy focus placed upon developing their comprehension strategies and understanding of texts they are reading. One strategy in particular that is used for Reading is ‘Close Reading’. This strategy gives students multiple exposures to the same text to reinforce comprehension skills within the text, about the text and beyond the text.
Within our daily Numeracy block our students focus on applying their knowledge through open ended Mathematical tasks that enable students to explain their thinking and for them to develop their breadth and not simply depth. A combination of whole class, small group (like and mixed ability) and individual learning experiences in all areas of Numeracy occur.
Like all learning areas at Newtown Primary School, we place a very heavy focus on student wellbeing. In term one our students experience a school camp that has a focus on building community. Students engage in weekly GEM dedicated lessons to reinforce the skills of gratitude, empathy and mindfulness. The Zones of Regulation additionally support our students to manage their emotions, this is also supported by our involvement in the Respectful Relationships program, for which we are a ‘cluster school’.
As part of our well being focus also, and like every student and staff member in our school, students develop a ‘focus plan’, which highlights 3 specific strategies that students can engage with when feeling overwhelmed and or dysregulated.
From year 3, our students engage within our BYOD (bring your own device) iPad program. Students are heavily encouraged to bring an iPad to school to support, extend and complement their learning. Applications regularly used include the Google Suite, Epic!, iMovie, Stop Motion Studio and Toontastic.