Year 7 & 8 Curriculum Overview

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TABLE OF CONTENTS FOREWORD FROM THE COLLEGE PRINCIPAL ..........................................................................................3 PREFACE ...................................................................................................................................................4 TRANSITION TO SENIOR SCHOOL ............................................................................................................5 THE TRANSITION – A STUDENT PERSPECTIVE .........................................................................................6 RELIGIOUS LIFE OF THE COLLEGE ............................................................................................................7 YEAR 7 AND 8 SUBJECTS ..........................................................................................................................8 SUBJECT OFFERINGS ................................................................................................................................9 DIGITAL SUPPORT ..................................................................................................................................10 SPORTING OPPORTUNITIES ...................................................................................................................11 ARTS OPPORTUNITIES ............................................................................................................................12 EXTRACURRICULAR OPPORTUNITIES .....................................................................................................13 STAFF CONTACTS ...................................................................................................................................15

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Foreword from the College Principal

Mr Chris Gabbett

‘Catholic’ is a Greek word which roughly translates as ‘universal’. It is a word that focusses on the broad perspective of things; of an appreciation of the whole. The aim of the year 7 and 8 curriculum is to offer a ‘whole’ perspective of the school curriculum. Our aim is to deliver to students a really strong core education, whilst also offering them experience of subjects that, in the future, they may wish to specialise in. So, whilst there is a directed curriculum at this stage, students have varied and rich experiences with a number of teachers across a breadth of disciplines.

Chris Gabbett

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Preface Your child is about to embark on an exciting and vital few years in their education; a time in their life when growth and change will influence who they are and what they are becoming. We believe that these vital years are best served by an education program that is specifically tailored to the developmental, social, and spiritual needs of young adolescents. Indeed, this has been our focus since implementing a Middle Years program at Mary MacKillop Catholic College. The Middle Years program offers a renewed understanding of the often-complex issues faced by young adolescents by providing a program that maintains a balance between academic rigour, formation, and personal development. We see the opportunity to provide guidance and support to adolescents as a natural and necessary element of our program. A team of engaging teachers attend to the challenges and successes of the student, providing a caring community and encouraging a sense of connectedness. The ‘seamless’ nature of our curriculum ensures there is a smooth transition between Junior and Senior schooling. The academic program has been designed to be intellectually challenging and to empower young people to learn. Alongside the core subjects of Religion, English, Mathematics, Science, PE and History/Geography, students are offered a range of exploratory subjects in Years 7 and 8 - from Art and Italian to Drama and Design Technologies. Exposure to these subjects opens the students’ eyes to the electives available from Year 9 and often unlocks the doorway of discovery to the individual’s created purpose in life. Our Patron saint, St Mary of the Cross MacKillop, was renowned for her tireless commitment. She had passion. It was a deep passion for God and a passion for supporting people made in His image. Out of these, she believed in possibilities. In her local and wider community, she saw suffering, injustice, struggles and pain and she wanted to alleviate these things. This led her to practical action – a willingness to get her hands dirty and to walk alongside those who suffered. In this, she was never alone – she embraced partnership as a means of securing the Common Good. She did not let differences of faith, opinion or class be a barrier to her mission. She persevered – facing barriers that were systemic, institutional and at times personal. Lastly, she was immersed in and believed in prayer as a means towards transformation, and communion with God. It is this same attitude that we hope to form in the hearts and minds of all who pass through our College.

Mr Kris Naiker Assistant Principal Teaching and Learning Senior

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Transition to Senior School

Over the past few years, a dedicated transition program from Year 6 - Year 7 has occurred. This program has evolved over time and also includes students in Year 5. Research shows that the transition from primary school to secondary school is often associated with a drop in academic achievement. (Pengergast, 2017). Providing the Year 5 and 6 students with opportunities to experience lessons taught in the Senior School by Senior School teachers will support students in a positive and smooth transition to Senior School. Students are also able to develop several beneficial skills in preparing for senior school, including organisational skills, adapting to different teaching styles and learning in purpose-built rooms. The Transition program for students in Year 5 and 6 begins in Term 1 and continues for the remainder of the year. In Term 3, Year 6 students will have the opportunity to eat and play at the Senior School on designated days.

Experiencing different eating and playground

expectations, whilst in a supportive and safe environment also contributes to a positive transition program for the students.

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For students not in Year 6 at Mary MacKillop Catholic College, there will be a ‘Moving on Up’ Day scheduled in Term 4. This will provide the students with the opportunity to spend the day at the College and get to know other students as well as meet some of their teachers. To further support transition into the senior school, on the first day, only Year 7 students and new students will be at the College. This will give the students time to familiarise with their timetable and know the location of each classroom they will require to attend.

THE TRANSITION – A STUDENT PERSPECTIVE

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Religious Life of the College

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Year 7 and 8 Subjects Along with the core subjects, students will also study subjects led by specialist teachers. In Years 7 and 8, these subjects are called Elective subjects; they pave the way for students to make choices about courses offered in Years 9 and 10. The Year 7 curriculum reflects the first step in the transition from being taught predominately by the one teacher in the junior years towards accessing specialty subjects, teachers and resources. The aim of the Year 7 and 8 curriculum is to provide students to experience as many subjects as possible. This will allow them to make informed choices in Year 9. Effective assessment allows teachers to identify individual students’ learning gaps and consequently support them in reaching their full learning potential. Formative assessment at its core supports teachers in identifying where students are in their learning and allows them to focus on the learning needs and address the student accordingly by modifying the learning approach to best suit each student. Formative assessment offers a set of quality teaching practices that are ideally situated to optimise teaching and learning and engage students, especially in the middle years. Where necessary, students are offered additional assistance by the Learning Support staff. This may take the form of small group work, in-class support, provision of an adjusted or modified work program, or a student reducing their subject load to receive regular and ongoing support. Such support is always negotiated between the teacher, the parents and the Learning Support teacher.

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Subject Offerings

CORE SUBJECTS

ELECTIVES [Students will engage in all of these subjects throughout Year 7 and 8]

• Religion • English • Maths • Science

• Art • Music • Drama • Media Art • Design Technology

• History • Wood Technology • Geography • Physical Education

• Digital Technology • Food Technology • Digital Literacy

Italian

For more information on senior electives, please read the Year 9 & 10 Curriculum Overview, and the Year 11 & 12 Curriculum Overview.

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Digital Support Schools have a duty of care to students to take reasonable steps to ensure digital learning is conducted in a safe and responsible manner. At Mary MacKillop Catholic College, all students will receive a laptop. Students will be made aware of expectations relating to the safe, responsible, and ethical use of digital technologies. During the first week of Year 7, students will be given specific information on how to use their laptops along with key people they should contact if they are having issues with their laptop. To further support the students in their use of technology for learning, a subject called Digital Literacy has been introduced. This subject explicitly teaches the students all the digital platforms and applications that will be used at the College. This includes platforms such as Canvas, OneNote, Education Perfect and the relevant Microsoft applications. When students leave the classroom to enter the workplace, they will enter a world where adapting to use technological tools is an integral part of their professional lives. It is both the parents and the College’s responsibility to train students to be proficient in the use of technology and to use technology in a safe and ethical manner.

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SPORTING OPPORTUNITIES

Throughout the year, students have numerous opportunities to nominate for sporting competitions. Students have a wide variety of choice which includes intra, inter and representative sport options. Inter-school: Sport options students may elect to pursue at the College include AFL, Athletics, Cricket, Futsal, Football (soccer), Hockey, Netball, Rugby, Rugby League, Rugby 7’s Touch Football and Volleyball. Carnivals: Students may participate in Athletics, Swimming and Cross-Country Carnivals which may then lead to selection to represent the School at Inner Downs and Darling Downs level and beyond. Intra-School: Training opportunities exist in Fitness, Athletics, Cross-Country, Volleyball, Cricket and Touch Football.

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ARTS OPPORTUNITIES

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Co-curricular life at the College provides avenues for students to discover new talents, build confidence, develop resilience, experience success, foster teamwork, and make new friends. The Arts Program at Mary MacKillop College offers inclusive, creative opportunities for all students. Programs in Drama, Visual Art, Dance, Music are supported by a comprehensive Instrumental and Performance Music. We currently have 7 external Music teachers who administer private tuition and direct ensembles as well as full time Arts staff who provide assistance and opportunities outside classroom tasks. Artwork and performances have been on display at places such as the Toowoomba show, Ekka, Carnival of Flowers, Toowoomba Eisteddfod, Anzac Day marches, Toowoomba Art Exhibition, Hampton Food Festival as well as college events. The College Cocurricular bands, choirs, troupes and ensembles include: •

Concert Band

Marching Band and Colour Guard

Choir

7/8 Dance and Senior Dance

Drumline

Guitar Ensemble

troupes

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EXTRACURRICULAR OPPORTUNITIES Extracurricular activities play a significant role in the formation of young adolescents. These activities can help students succeed in much more than just their academic endeavors. Extracurricular activities often have the effect of fostering strong team-building skills and training students in holding long term goals. These activities are also fun and offer students the opportunity to spend time with others of similar interests. In short, extracurricular activities can arm students with many of the skills future employers will be looking for. The list below provides a snapshot of some of the extracurricular activities available at the College: •

Mathematics Tutoring

Girls/Boys Futsal

History Extension

Fitness Training

Touch Football

Cricket Training

Rugby 7s Training

Physics Tutoring

Optiminds

Gardening Club

Chess Club

Coding Club

Cross Country Training

Debating Club

Sprint Club

Indigenous Group

Girls Volleyball

Art Club

Girls/Boys Soccer

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Staff Contacts Mr Kris Naiker (Assistant Principal – Teaching and Learning) For all general enquiries regarding processes, electives, structure, and subject changes throughout Years 9 and 10. kris.naiker@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mr Chris Bracken (Dean of Senior Studies and E-Learning) For all enquiries regarding academic processes and online learning platforms. christopher.bracken@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mrs Leisa Radley (Director of Formation) For all enquiries regarding to Religion and Religion and Ethics leisa.radley@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mr Brad Griffiths (Middle Leader-Sports and Student Engagement) For all enquiries regarding HPE, Sports Science, Community PE, and sporting opportunities. Brad.Griffiths@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mrs Jessica Burke (Middle Leader-The Arts and Student Engagement) For all enquiries regarding Media Arts, Dance, Drama, Music Visual, Art, and Instrumental Music. Jessica.burke@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mr Tim Connolly (Middle Leader-English) For all enquiries regarding English, Literature and Creative Writing. Jessica.burke@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mr Jared Nielsen (Middle Leader - Science & Technologies) For all enquiries regarding Design, Digital Technology, Wood Technology, Metal Technology and Science. jared.nielsen@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mr Piers Dudin (Middle Leader-Mathematics) For all enquiries regarding Mathematics in Year 9 and 10 Piers.Dudin@twb.catholic.edu.au

Mrs Jacqui Koch (Learning Support) For assistance in making suitable subject choices for students who may require learning support or have needs which need to be catered for within a specialised learning framework. jacquelin.koch@twb.catholic.edu.au jacquelin.koch@twb.catholic.edu.au

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