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Junior School: A Sense of Wonder

‘This generation of children has the potential to be one of the most powerful generations of positive change the world has ever seen.’

Cate Begbie, Head of Junior School

Pre-kindergarten to Year 4 | Co-educational

 

A strong sense of belonging permeates from the moment you step into Wesley’s Junior School. Students here thrive in a busy, enthusiastic learning environment, full of energy and a desire to learn and experience all that Wesley can offer.

 

The Junior School embraces the philosophy that co-education is important in the foundation years. Boys and girls learn from each other and establish important social and emotional building blocks when in a co-educational setting.

 

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Our purpose built Pre-kindergarten, Kindergarten and Pre-primary rooms are wonderful environments in which children learn in their earliest years of schooling. Inspired by elements of the philosophy of Reggio Emilia, students are immersed in a play-based curriculum which nurtures a love of learning and positive self-esteem. Emerging literacy and numeracy is fostered and children are encouraged to create meaning, practice social skills, learn how to solve problems, gain confidence and develop positive attitudes toward school and learning.

 

As our students progress to junior primary years, we embed a strong foundation of literacy and numeracy, balanced with an Inquiry program that promotes critical and creative thinking, questioning, problem solving and independent learning. These are nurtured within a safe and structured, yet flexible, environment.

 

The Junior School Sustainability Garden has become one of the best-loved features of the Wesley Campus since its construction in 2012, as a result of the ongoing care and commitment of students and staff (including a dedicated Sustainability Teacher). Chickens, worm farms, vegetable gardens, a passionfruit vine ‘tent’ and various trails featuring natural and recycled features abound. Junior School students are encouraged to care for their natural environment, but also to engage and connect with it.

 

At Wesley, children are encouraged to be kind and responsible people. The partnership between teachers and parents is highly valued and makes our community special. Parents are welcomed in the learning process through rostered help in the classroom and events during the year. We know it delivers wonderful benefits for the children.

 

 

Pre-Kindergarten to Pre-Primary

 

The teaching and learning program in early years is designed to help children develop the skills, knowledge and conceptual understanding that form the foundation of future learning at various developmental stages. Educational experiences are carefully planned with real life relevance and purpose, address a range of learning styles.

 

Fundamental to early childhood is the establishment of early and pre-literacy and numeracy skills. Programs are linked to the Early Years Learning Framework, the Western Australian Kindergarten Guidelines and the Australian Curriculum (Pre-primary) and value the explorative nature of young children and the wonder and awe of discovery. Attaining the core literacy and numeracy skills is essential and so too is the application of these skills in experiential based learning scenarios where the students learn by doing.

 

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Teaching programs cater for different learning styles and teaching expertise to ensure children have broad opportunities to develop a holistic education. Pastoral care recognises the developing emotional needs of children in early childhood with a focus on the specific needs of boys’ and girls’ styles of learning. Strong emphasis is placed on the notion of ‘Belonging, Being and Becoming’.

 

We believe that young children learn best through their interactions with their environment, by exploring, experimenting, touching, building, and doing things by and for themselves. Our classrooms are purposefully prepared environments, with stimulating materials where learning is hands-on and experiential. We encourage students to explore, make discoveries, and use their imaginations.

 

 

Years 1 to 4

 

Fundamental to learning in Years 1 to 4 is the establishment of highly proficient literacy and numeracy skills. These support the development of critical thinking, deep learning and higher order conceptual understanding. Learning programs value the explorative nature of young children and the wonder and awe of discovery, and this learning is encouraged and nurtured.

 

Students also work with experienced specialist teachers in various areas of the Arts, Physical Education, Library, Philosophical, Religious and Ethical Perspectives, Indonesian and Sustainability.

 

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Teaching programs continue to cater for different learning styles and teaching expertise. Pastoral Care recognises the developing emotional needs of children in this age range. Teachers strive to provide a learning environment in which all students are valued and accepted and which encourages children, as they are, to enjoy their learning while developing personal, achievable and measureable goals that are age appropriate.

 

Wesley College follows the guidelines set by ACARA in the Australian Curriculum. Curriculum development at Wesley is a major focus for staff and a collaborative process, ensuring that high quality educational programs are available and based on specific needs across the Junior School or the particular needs of students.