Middle School, or the Middle Phase of Learning, is the transition years between the Junior School and Senior Phase of Learning. At Faith, it comprises Years 7 to 9. The curriculum at Faith Lutheran College, Redlands follows the Queensland Studies Authority Essential Learnings or the Australian Curriculum (English, Mathematics, Science, History and Geography).
The Core Key Learning Areas
- Christian Studies
- English (Australian Curriculum)
- Geography (Australian Curriculum)
- Health and Physical Education
- History (Australian Curriculum)
- Mathematics (Australian Curriculum)
- Science (Australian Curriculum)
- Japanese (Year 7 and 8)
The Career and Cultural Subjects
- Visual Arts
- Japanese (Year 9)
- Business Education
- Home Economics
- Information and Communication Technology
- Technology and Design
The term 'Technology' has come to describe such things as:
- the creative processes used to develop products;
- the products created through these processes;
- the ‘know-how’ related to these processes and products; and
- the tools and equipment used.
Sometimes the term ‘technology’ is used to mean ‘computers’ or ‘information technology’. At Faith, however, it is used in a broader sense, as described here:
'Technology involves envisioning and developing products to meet human needs and wants, capitalise on opportunities and extend human capabilities. Products of technology include artefacts, processes, systems, services and environments. These products make up the designed world. Products of technology have impacts and consequences on individuals, local and global communities, and environments.’ (QSA, Technology P-10 Syllabus) In the Middle School there are four subjects that fall under the realm of Technology. They are:
- Business Education;
- Home Economics;
- Information and Communication Technology; and
- Technology and Design.
Home Economics, Information and Communication Technology and Technology and Design are offered in Year 7 to 10. Business, however, can only be chosen in Year 9 and 10. It is part of a two year subject that spans Middle School and Senior School.
Year 9 students have used Laser cutting and engraving techniques, 3D printing and traditional woodworking skills to create the FOOSBALL TABLE.
In the Middle School, students can expect to have between one and one and a half hours (1-1 ½ hours) of homework each night. Students should regularly spend around 20 minutes per night on a Core Key Learning Area or Careers and Cultural Subjects. The work is designed to:
- consolidate classroom learning;
- complete what has been begun in class;
- stimulate interest in a topic;
- extend the student’s learning;
- encourage independent learning; and
- complete formal assessment.
The purpose of assessment is to allow students opportunities to demonstrate what they know, and can do with what they know, in each Key Learning Area and Career and Cultural Subject. It also informs teachers about how effectively they are teaching, and how effective the learning process has been for students. Assessment also informs teachers’ future planning. Students will be assessed at regular intervals in a variety of ways. The Queensland syllabi indicate four ways that teachers can evaluate and assess students’ performance. They are:
- teacher observation;
- focused analysis; and
- self and peer evaluation.
Of these, focused analysis is the one that will impact on home the most. Focused analysis, or formal assessment, might include such tasks as:
- practical demonstrations;
- artistic writing;
- oral presentations;
- multimedia presentations;
- group work such as debates;
- exams; and
- construction of products.
Calendars are collated on the College website (www.faithlutheran.qld.edu.au) each term informing parents, carers and students of due dates of formal assessment for each subject. This calendar should be used to assist students to plan and organise their studies. All classes utilise ‘edmodo’ as a Learning Management System. Assessment tasks, resources and messages from teachers are all accessible through your child’s ‘edmodo’ pages. It is expected that students, with teacher guidance, will prepare for focused analysis during class lessons and homework time. Class time will be given for students to work on assessment and clarify concerns with teachers. If students are absent during assessment tasks, teachers may organise for that student to complete the assessment at another time; or, if appropriate, use an alternative means to assess a student’s progress in the unit of work. It is important for parents to contact the teacher if there is a concern with assessment.
Gifted and Talented at Faith
What does term ‘Gifted and Talented’ mean? It is often considered that the students in this area are a homogenous population themselves; however, gifts and talents correspond to distinct types of abilities. These natural abilities can be divided into four aptitude domains of either, intellectual, creative, social or physical. Everyone possesses some form of ability in each domain but it is those whose ability level largely exceeds most of their peers that are considered "gifted". With this in mind, gifted and talented students are encouraged to stay with their peer groups to allow them to develop their other domains effectively. At Faith, students are catered for within the classroom with multi-level activities and programs developed for pupils in order to develop and improve their skills, whilst enhancing their inherent motivation to learn. By stimulating their interests and creating a climate that promotes achievement, students are encouraged to accept and value their gifts.
Provision for gifted pupils is integrated into an appropriate learning environment and an enriched curriculum giving the gifted and talented students opportunity to demonstrate and develop their talents. Opportunity is also provided through extracurricular activities and clubs providing some more in depth explorations of subjects. Special experiences are also provided throughout the year where students are able to extend and challenge themselves.