Curriculum

At St Bernadette's we promote educational and personal excellence in our students and give attention to their intellectual, spiritual, physical and emotional development as they grow as people.


At St Bernadette’s we approach learning in a way that mirrors the real world. As with most aspects of learning in life, learning at school is not something that can easily be separated into different boxes. Teachers are aware, for example, that when a child is working with a group on a science experiment, he or she might well be operating and working in a variety of ways - questioning and explaining, making, sharing and writing observations, drawing graphs, calculating results, consulting references and much more. For this reason, teaching and learning is often integrated across several curriculum areas rather than taught as separate and discrete subjects.

Class teachers ensure that their teaching program follows the guidelines set by the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) and covers the set curriculum areas:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Human Society and Its Environment
  • Science and Technology
  • Creative Arts
  • Personal Development, Health and Physical Education

As a Catholic school we also have a strong religious dimension that runs through all the KLAs and is also formally recognised as the KLA of Religious Education. Our students K-6 take part in formal Religious Education every day, based on the new Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta curriculum that is relevant to our students and to the world they live in.

Learn about our approach to Religious Education and the faith journey of St Bernadette’s students

 

Literacy

Literacy is central to students' intellectual, social and emotional development and has an essential role in all Key Learning Areas (NSW Education Standards Authority [NESA], English K-6 Syllabus).

Literacy learning at St Bernadette's is grounded in the content and processes outlined in the NSW English Syllabus. Students are specifically taught in the areas of Talking & Listening, Reading, and Writing through a balanced literacy model. Students learn through a combination of teacher modelling and demonstration, shared or guided activities and independent activities.

Learning in the literacy area is supported by an extensive range of high-quality reading and library resources and technology. Learning programs are provided for students with special education and communication needs. St Bernadette's has a particular focus on early intervention, using the school's assessment and teaching resources to identify and assist students in need of support before the end of Stage 1 (Years 1 and 2). We use the Reading Recovery program, which aims to accelerate the progress of those at-risk literacy learners to the average level of their grade in their school, as quickly as possible, so students may obtain maximum benefit from classroom instruction.

The Reading Recovery Program provides:

  • individualised instruction for targeted underachieving individuals who have not responded to quality literacy instruction in the classroom
  • daily, intensive, high quality instruction to students experiencing reading and writing difficulties during their second year of school
  • lessons that are individually tailored to provide explicit instruction for each student.

Reading Recovery is supplementary and additional to classroom literacy instruction. Teachers trained in the delivery of Reading Recovery provide individual daily instruction for 30 minutes over an average period of 12 to 20 weeks.



Numeracy

The continued development of numeracy learning at St Bernadette's has been a particular area of focus since 2002. Teachers have completed a professional development process called REaL Maths (Reflection, Empowerment and Learning in Maths) to better understand the demands of the contemporary Mathematics curriculum. Significant acquisitions continue to be made to build upon the school's collection of teaching and learning resources.

We are continually looking at new ways to improve the delivery of instruction in this area in order that the students receive the best possible understanding of the necessary concepts, knowledge and skills. We actively involve all students in Maths learning groups, where the teachers work with the students in their groups at their level of understanding, knowledge and skill, and challenge them to move to the next level.

For those students who require additional help in this area, St Bernadette’s provides a Mathematical Intervention support group ( based on the program Extending Mathematical Understanding - EMU). Identified students participate in a Mathematics program for 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week for a minimum of 25 hours to a maximum of 50 hours. Students work in a small group of three with a specially trained EMU intervention teacher.

Students in the EMU intervention program are involved in a range of activities to promote mathematical thinking. They also participate in home tasks learnt in their EMU sessions.

 


We focus on every aspect of child development with our engaging curriculum

Contact St Bernadette’s TODAY to learn more about what we offer.