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Middle School: Exploring Opportunities to Grow

‘It is important to look at not only the wonderful academic achievements, but also the successes of spirit, character, leadership and endeavour.’

Peter Dunning, Head of Middle School

Years 5 to 8 | Co-educational Years 5 and 6 | Boys only Years 7 to 8

 

Supported by the expertise of a large team of staff dedicated to working with Years 5 to 8, Middle School is an exciting time for our young people. Full of spirit and energy, students at this age are learning about who they are and what they can do.

 

middleschool_wesley_aThe Middle School is a welcoming and secure environment that promotes self-confidence, independence, responsibility and self-expression. Our vision: ‘We value ourselves and others and take responsibility for exploring opportunities to grow.’

 

Key learning principles include:

  • An emphasis on numeracy, literacy and information and communications technology skills for use in a range of learning situations;
  • A student-directed approach to learning;
  • Ensuring learning is engaging and connected to real-life experiences;
  • Supporting the growth of independence and peer group orientation through collaboration;
  • Intellectual challenge, through use of disciplined thinking and conceptual frameworks;
  • Providing a balanced curriculum that encourages depth and links between learning areas, with interconnectedness between the various fields of human endeavour;
  • Enabling teachers to plan collaboratively, provide academic care and monitor student learning.

 

To ensure students are engaged with their schooling at this critical time, Wesley offers a stimulating and rigorous academic program, including some flexibility of choice and intensive learning through project-based electives.

 

All students study Mathematics, English, Science, Humanities and Social Sciences, Health and Physical Education, the Arts (performing and visual), Languages (French, Indonesian and Mandarin from Year 5), Technology and Enterprise, Philosophy, Religious and Ethical Perspectives, Service Learning and a specific Social and Emotional Learning Program designed for Middle School students.

 

 

Years 5 and 6

 

Year 5 is a major entry point at Wesley, meaning there are many new students and opportunities to make new friends. Middle School is co-educational up to Year 6.

 

In Year 5, classes have one teacher, or tutor, responsible for all four core learning areas of Mathematics, Science, English and Humanities and Social Science, as well as being responsible for the Pastoral Care and Social and Emotional Learning of each student in their class.

 

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In Year 6, classes are designed to begin the learning pathway to the Year 7 structure with tutors working in pairs. A student’s tutor provides the pastoral and social and emotional support as well as providing an academic framework to enhance organisational skills.

 

A gradual increase in exposure to specialist teachers occurs in these years, with some grouping of students. Students have the opportunity to make choices within subjects and through academic projects, as supported by their teachers. Project-based learning occurs each term and incorporates all four core subjects, including the popular Billy Carts program where students design, build and race their own Billy Cart.

 

The early Middle School years see a gradual progression away from a primary school style of learning. Moving from a primary school model to mirror the Year 7/8 tutor style marks the transition into the upper Middle School learning environment.

Year 5 Band Program

In Year 5, students participate in a compulsory band program, incorporating instrumental and performing arts lessons and band rehearsals, to ensure all students experience the many educational benefits of a music-based performing arts program.

 

Years 7 and 8

 

In Year 7, the Middle School becomes boys-only and is the next major entry level at Wesley. At this stage, the boys transition toward secondary schooling by becoming accustomed to being taught by a greater number of teachers and exposed to a greater level of expertise through specialist teachers. Students select a language in Year 7 for a minimum two-year period.

 

Classes are taught by a variety of specialist teachers with a core teacher, or tutor, in two learning areas. The tutor provides both pastoral and academic support. Tutors work in pairs comprising a Maths/Science specialist and an English/Humanities and Social Sciences specialist.

 

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Year 8 students participate in a range of term-long elective subjects in the Arts and Technology and Enterprise. They are also involved in project work, solving problems collaboratively. All Year 8 students are required to complete the term-long Katitjin program.

 

There is a greater sense of personal responsibility and accountability for learning in these years.

 

Click here to for more information about Katitjin.