Throughout our two year program, we work on developing general competencies that encompass all key learning areas:
- Collecting, analysing and organising data
- Communicating ideas and information
- Planning and organising activities
- Working cooperatively with others in teams
- Using mathematical ideas and techniques
- Solving problems
- Using technology
Our differentiated learning environment caters for a wide variety of learning styles and focuses on the needs of gifted students, providing them with a climate that encourages them to question, exercise independence and use their creativity in order to be all that they can be. It is
- Accepting of a variety of ideas, opinions and perspectives
- Encouraging of complex thought, risk-taking and demonstrations of initiative
- Student-centred in that it is flexible, open and offers opportunities for mobility and independence
The learning experiences we offer incorporate both acceleration and enrichment and provide developmentally appropriate challenges for all students. To achieve this we differentiate the curriculum in content, process and product.
- Content is tailored to include tasks that stress an integration of disciplines and include studies of real people and methods of inquiry. The knowledge and skills presented to students are abstract, complex, varied and appropriate to student's current needs and prior learning as well as satisfying curriculum expectations.
- Processes involve problem-solving, technology, group/partner interaction and collaboration, and variable pacing. We provide tasks that develop critical, creative and higher-order thinking skills. Students are required to justify answers and explain strategies.
- The products students create involve the transformation of knowledge into new and creative forms, reflect real world problems and are evaluated by a variety of authentic audiences. A high standard is expected of finished products.
The use of technology as a tool for learning is a focus in the opportunity classes at Quakers Hill Public School. Daily access to interactive whiteboards, desktop computers and netbooks with wireless internet capacity enables students to:
- efficiently and effectively access digital information to assist with investigating, problem-solving and decision making
- produce creative solutions to support learning and develop new understandings across all Key Learning Areas
- communicate, share and work collaboratively in local and global environments
- understand the legal, ethical and health and safety implications regarding the use of these technologies
- develop new thinking and learning skills
The advantages of being part of our opportunity class program include:
- interaction with 'like minds', students who share similar interests and ability levels
- participation in a program that provides challenge, stimulation and sets high expectations
- development of skills and strategies that provide the groundwork for future learning
- participation in a wide range of extra-curricular activities
- development of leadership skills and application of these skills in a variety of leadership positions within the classroom and the school
In addition to the two opportunity classes established within the school, our internal structure accommodates three stage-based enrichment/extension classes. These classes provide an optimum learning environment for those students who demonstrate the characteristics of giftedness or talented in the academic domain.
A comprehensive identification process, comprising a balance of subjective and objective strategies, has been developed to aid in the selection of the most appropriate students for inclusion in these classes. This identification process follows a year-long sequence that moves from class/stage assessments to specific off-level testing of a target group, ending with final selection of students for enrichment/extension classes. It assesses both actual achievement and potential to achieve.
Once the identification process is complete, the most appropriate placement option for each identified student is determined. Inclusion in an enrichment class is fluid and is dependent on performance throughout the year in daily class tasks as well as the assessment data collected on a yearly basis. The identification process enables us to place all students in the learning situation that best meets their academic, social and emotional needs.
At Quakers Hill Public School for our opportunity class we have documentations that will help parents and students find more information about our opportunity classes. Download and view Quakers Hill Public School: