Planning and developing any school curriculum that caters for the diversity of students and equips them to deal with the needs of the 21st century is by no means simple. None the less, the aim and purpose of any school curriculum should be that it is developed with the intention to enhance and provide knowledge and educational experiences that maximise students learning. This paper will attempt to explain the process of curriculum development from a school based perspective through a situational analysis of South Beach Primary School. It will identify relevant key issues relating to this school and how these issues influence school and teachers’ decisions when planning learning experiences, school programs and classroom lessons. In accordance with National Australian Curriculum and state documents a suggested flow chart (Appendix One) and integrated matrix (Appendix Two) from a Macro to Micro level covering a series of five lessons for a class of year six students will be included. This will demonstrate how these key issues might be addressed, and how curriculum content, specific to a chosen topic, might be integrated with other learning areas, include general capabilities, cross curriculum priorities, cater for diversity of students and involve a variety of teaching approaches.
Scenario 2: Year Six
Year six level has been chosen because as seen in the following school profile the culture of this school is based on and encourages community participation and as Eggen & Kauchak (2010) explains students of this age will be going through physical and emotional changes that often create uncertainty as they attempt to find identity within their personal lives. Concentrating on this grade focussing on the benefits and advantage of their own and another community and the way language use varies may assist to support these students. South Beach Primary School opened in 2009 and currently has approximately 600 students attending the school. This government school is located 1 km from the local foreshore where the community has access to swimming, sailing and beach activities. Although, many of the students are Australian born locals, there are also many students that have recently migrated with their families from both overseas and interstate. The culture and ethos of the school is based around the concept of a ‘village’ and aims to work closely with the community to provide outstanding educational experiences for all students and as such actively encourages community participation and active citizenship. The school also has a strong focus on Literacy and Numeracy, with over ninety per cent of students in Years 3, 5 and 7 achieving National minimum standards or above. In addition, the school is well resourced, promoting extensive use of technology in classrooms. As part of the school’s Health and Physical Education program, students in Years 3 – 6 participate in an annual Beach Safety swimming program delivered by the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia Key Issues
Key issues relevant to any school when developing a curriculum indicated by Brady & Kennedy (2010) will depend on the individual school situation and be influenced by external (outside) and internal (inside) factors. These may include educational system requirements, subject changes, school culture, and resources both in and out of school, student needs and capabilities, as well as various teaching approaches. It is for this reason, after considering the profile of South Beach relevant key issues which may influence this school and teachers’ decisions when planning the curriculum are as follows.
1. That it is a government school located in Victoria.
2. The school culture is one that values citizenship and community involvement, which includes an annual Beach Safety program. 3. The school is new, well-resourced and has access to technology facilities and...