Our school curriculum
The study of English is central to the learning and development of all young Australians. It helps create confident communicators, imaginative thinkers and informed citizens. The Australian Curriculum English aims to ensure that students learn to listen to, read, view, speak, write, create and reflect on increasingly complex and sophisticated spoken, written and multimodal texts across a growing range of contexts with accuracy, fluency and purpose.
Learning to read is one of the most important educational outcomes of primary education. At NPS, our approach to teaching students how to read is centred around the ‘Big Six’ components of reading that are essential to reading instruction. The ‘Big Six’ includes:
- Phonological awareness – building awareness of the sounds of language, including rhythm, rhymes and syllables.
- Phonics – knowing the relationship between letters and sounds.
- Vocabulary – knowing and using an expanding range of words.
- Fluency – reading with accuracy, expression and appropriate pace.
- Comprehension – using specific strategies to understand a text.
- Oral Language – speaking and listening to build a foundation for reading.
InitiaLit is used in the early years to systematically and explicitly teach the basic alphabetic code. It incorporates the key components necessary for early reading instruction, and evolves through the years to provide an explicit and effective model for teaching reading, spelling and rich language instruction using children’s literature. InitiaLit is complimented by The Heggerty Phonemic Awareness Curriculum, which is also used in early years to teach daily, explicit and systematic phonological and phonemic awareness lessons.
Sound Waves is an Australian phonics program, informed by research on the best practices for teaching spelling. Sound Waves is used in middle and upper years, providing a modern and meaningful approach to systematically and explicitly teaching phonemic awareness, synthetic phonics, morphology & etymology.
At NPS, writing is purposefully and explicitly taught with careful consideration to the teaching and learning cycle. Students learn specific writing skills and language features that allow them to effectively communicate, inform, persuade and entertain via written text. Brightpath is used as a formative assessment tool, allowing teachers to assess student writing progress and provide individual and specific feedback to students about what they need to learn next.