In their Foundation year, students at Waverley Meadows are learning how to be life-long learners including establishing school routines, getting along and interacting with others. Their participation in the transition program the previous year helps them have a seamless transition into school. Each Foundation student is buddied with a Year 6 student who acts as a mentor and assists them with making a smooth transition into school. Throughout the year, the students participate in classroom activities with their buddy such as buddy reading.
Foundation students are immersed in activities that develop their phonemic awareness through a synthetic phonics approach. This assists students to learn sounds and the letters that represent them. Students read one-on-one with the teacher on a regular basis and work towards achieving their personalised goals to become the strongest readers they can be. We also encourage parent and grandparent helpers to come in each day and listen to the children read.
By providing many hands-on experiences, students are immersed in language experiences to promote rich vocabulary and to assist with transferring these experiences to paper. Students are exposed to fine-motor activities, non-fiction and fiction writing, spelling and punctuation and formal handwriting lessons to assist students to be confident writers.
Mathematics tasks are very multi-sensory in the junior years and focus on the development of base concepts in number. Students are always extended when they show interest and ability above and beyond curriculum standards.
Each class follows the same numeracy lesson structure. We begin with number tasks to practise automatic recall skills such as counting and addition facts. Following this, the teacher models and teaches specific maths skills which the students then apply through a range of hands-on activities. Every lesson concludes with a time for students to reflect on their learning.
The use of technology, as well as programs and applications, are formally taught regularly throughout the year. Students also learn about being cyber safe.
Social and Emotional Learning activities include circle time, discussions and role plays to help students develop their ability to identify and communicate their emotions, problem solve in situations of conflict and seek help when needed.
Each term, we have a different inquiry topic that looks at an area of history, geography or personal studies.