Friday 19 August 2022

Acting Principal's News

Why I love Annesley 

I am very grateful to be appointed Principal of Annesley. Leadership is a privilege and I am honoured to serve the Annesley community in this role into our future. There is no other place that I’d rather spend my working days, and here are a few reasons why:

  • Annesley is at the forefront of progressive education and is leading the way in developing future-focused skills in our students so they can learn and thrive in any environment beyond Annesley. We continually challenge ourselves to keep pace with the ever-changing world around us.  
  • We have an exceptional team of educators who are creative and collaborative and continually seek to provide the very best teaching and learning for our students each and every day. 
  • Foundational Skills of Literacy and Numeracy are taught explicitly everyday in engaging, authentic and meaningful ways by expert educators who are using data continually to measure progress and the impact of teaching and learning programs. Personalised support is provided for all students in numerous, targeted and creative ways. 
  • Our students are given time each week to explore their strengths and passions and are empowered to utilise these to add value to our world through Enterprise. Creativity is harnessed and developed as a pathway to success in our unique Entrepreneurial Learning program. 
  • Kindness is everywhere. Students, staff and our community enjoy being at Annesley. Our human-centered focus is a priority and our Annesley Values are taught explicitly. Everyday I see heart-warming examples of student kindness towards themselves and each other.  
  • It is a fun place! Experiential Learning is at the heart of all we do. Our students ‘learn by doing’, engaging in adventurous learning ‘beyond the school gate’ regularly, exploring interpersonal qualities in fun and stimulating environments. 

IPSHA Oratory Competition

Aria in Year 5 this week performed a speech at the IPSHA (Independent Primary Schools) Oratory Competitions held at Prince Alfred College. Her speech titled ’Family Stories’ was acknowledged with third prize in the Year 5 category.

Congratulations Aria, you represented our school with distinction! 

Mary Anning Art Prize

Congratulations to Charlie in Year 6 who was announced the winner of the Mary Anning Art Prize for the National Year 6-8 Category for his artwork titled ‘Discovery’.

We are very proud of your achievement Charlie! 

Youth Health Champions

This morning Amelie in Base 4 launched her new initiative Youth Health Champions in partnership with 2020 Australian of the Year, Dr James Muecke. Year 3-7 students were invited to become a ‘Youth Health Champion’ and take on some health and education challenges in the month of September. Students are encouraged to register on Amelie’s website. To access, please click here.

Parents are invited to come and watch our R-7 parade outside on the Multi-purpose court at 8:45am

The PYP Advantage Part 2: The Transdisciplinary Program of Inquiry 

The IB Primary Years Program (PYP) framework was designed to be relevant to children of all cultures in all contexts. To identify what 3–12-year old students need to know and to address globally significant issues, the IB identified 6 universal themes. These themes, inspired by the work of educational theorist Ernest Boyer, are referred to in the PYP as the 6 Transdisciplinary Themes 

The Program of Inquiry  

The transdisciplinary themes of global significance provide the context for schools to frame a whole-school Program of Inquiry. The themes are revisited throughout the students’ primary years through their units of inquiry so that the result is immersion in broad-ranging, in-depth, articulated curriculum content. Our ELC, Reception and Year 1 classes explore 4 units of inquiry each year, these always include Who we are and How we express ourselves units. From Year 2 upwards students explore 6 units of inquiry each year, one for each transdisciplinary theme.  

A Program of Inquiry unique to Annesley  

The IB provides schools with the flexibility to develop their Program of Inquiry in ways that are relevant to their community and context. In developing our Program of Inquiry at Annesley we have ensured there are meaningful opportunities to integrate the Australian curriculum into inquiries. Our Program of Inquiry also reflects our strong sense of identity as a school, incorporating:  

  • wellbeing units in each year level 
  • units that develop understanding about enterprise in every year level 
  • units that link to our Quest experiential program  

We have displayed our 2022 Program of Inquiry  in prominent locations to be viewed by all members of our community: outside the gate on Rose Terrace, by the Bouncing Bean Café, and in the main corridor of the Early Years building. You can also view the full 2022 Program of Inquiry by clicking HERE.

At the end of each year the teachers at Annesley review and update the Program of Inquiry, to ensure units remain relevant, challenging and engaging, incorporating feedback from students. 

What is the advantage of transdisciplinary Learning? 

The transdisciplinary approach helps to set the IB Primary Years Program apart. By transdisciplinary the IB means learning that transcends the boundaries of subjects, leading to deeper understanding of the present world. Knowledge, conceptual understandings and skills from the traditional subject areas support the learning, but are used in ways that transcend the confines of these subjects. 

The analogy of a cake is sometimes used to describe transdisciplinary learning (e.g. Choi and Pak 2006), whereby the disciplines are no longer distinguishable, like the ingredients in a cake, and the result is something completely different and more rewarding.  

Transdisciplinary Learning in Practice 

Our Year 3 How We Organise Ourselves unit of inquiry from last term provides a wonderful example of authentic transdisciplinary learning. During this inquiry students connected their learning of languages across multiple disciplines including Literacy, French, Mathematics, Design Technology and Music to gain a deeper understanding of the Central Idea: ‘Language systems enable communication within and between communities.’ 

Learning was enriched through authentic experiences that highlighted real life issues and challenges relating to language and communication systems. Students were introduced to Auslan with visiting interpreters Glen and Samantha, gaining an insight into the communication challenges faced by the hearing impaired and the systems that enable us to overcome these barriers.   

Esther in Year 3 created an instructional video demonstrating the Auslan alphabet.

We worked with Aboriginal educator Eva Wilson at the South Australian Museum to learn some Kaurna language and found out about some of the challenges involved in reviving indigenous languages. This unit also provided a meaningful context to find out about the diversity of languages within our Base 3 classes and reflect on the benefits of learning more than one language. Many of our students learnt more about their home and family languages other than English  

Transdisciplinary learning begins and ends with a problem, an issue or a theme. Students’ interests and questions form the heart of transdisciplinary learning. This Year 3 unit culminated with students conducting an independent inquiry into a language system of their choice. Their inquiries were rich and varied, ranging from morse code, braille, Binary, Greek, Esperanto, Dutch, and even emojis!  

A balance of transdisciplinary and stand-alone learning 

Transdisciplinary learning is certainly an important benefit of the PYP, but not all learning in our subject areas can be meaningfully integrated into our units of inquiry.  In all subject areas there is a balance of learning that is integrated into our units of inquiry and learning that is stand alone.  

If you would like any further information about transdisciplinary learning or any other aspect of our curriculum, please contact our Director of Learning and Teaching, David Taylor taylord@annesley.sa.edu.au

Part 3 of The PYP Advantage, in our next newsletter, will look at Concept-based curriculum – how a focus on conceptual ideas develops children’s’ critical thinking, leading to deeper understanding. 

 References: 

IB, 2019. PYP From Principles to Practice 

Boyer, EL. 1995. The basic school: A community for learning. San Francisco, CA, USA. Jossey-Bass Inc/The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. 

Choi, BCK and Pak, AWP. 2006. “Multidisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity in health research, services, education, and policy” Médecine Clinique Et Experimentale. Vol 29 

ELC Learning

Eucalypt Room Video News

Primary School Learning

Base 3 Video News

Spotlight on Enterprise

The Bakers Boys are cooking batches of delicious chocolate-chip cookies each week in the Bouncing Bean Café. They are on to a winner with a low sugar version in line with our nutrition policy and have found a product that is popular, easy to make and able to remain on the counter for a few days. Hurry in, they sell out quickly!

The Quest News

Base 3 and 5 students have continued their Quest adventures across our great state, venturing far and wide to experience some truly unique locations.  

Base 5 have hit the trails, tackling Annesley’s infamous 30km Bike Ride. Accompanied by Beyond Limits, Kin and Alana, our students travelled along the River Torrens to West Beach, Glenelg and finally back to Annesley along the Mike Turtur bikeway. All students completed the ride in record time. 

Base 3 visited Monarto Zoological Park as part of their ‘Sharing the Planet’ Unit of Inquiry. Students explored the Indaba Bush Camp, learnt about how animals survive in different habitats and the importance of healthy habitats for animal survival. Battling wet and wintery conditions, students then took this newfound knowledge and constructed their own habitats. 

Date                    Chapel/Assembly Presenting class

25 August            Chapel (Book Week Parade)

1 September        Assembly – Year 3 Joe

8 September        Chapel

15 September      Assembly – Reception Leanne

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