Literacy involves an understanding of language and the ability to use it effectively to access knowledge, play an active part in society and contribute to personal growth. Listening, talking, reading and writing are the language processes through which students make meaning.
Children’s experience of literacy is very dependent on the interactions that they have with print and language in their home and other significant environments such as school. Teachers provide a range of experiences to enable students to develop literacy skills in reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. The foundations for literacy success in the more formal environment of school are well and truly laid through children’s home and early childhood experiences.
We use a range of resources to plan effective literacy programs. The Australian English Curriculum describes the content to be taught at each year level. The Early Years Learning Framework provides guidance in kindergarten for the teaching of key literacy skills. The First Steps Literacy Resource, developed by West Australian educators, is used to plan, teach and assess student’s literacy development. The resource identifies key understandings at different phases of development to becoming literate. It also describes the major teaching emphases for each of the phases to inform the teaching and learning program so that teachers are able to help students make progress in literacy.
We have high expectations for our students that they will begin to read and write with confidence in pre-primary. Our use of a synthetic phonics approach has a significant impact on children’s early reading and spelling skills. The value of reading to your child every day cannot be underestimated.
Numeracy includes comprehending, interpreting and drawing on mathematical skills, knowledge and language and general thinking and learning skills and processes such as analysis, justification, generalisation, making and testing conjectures and evaluation. It involves having the confidence to know what to use, when to use it and when to access other resources.
A broad mathematics curriculum provides opportunities for students to develop skills, knowledge and understanding of the content and processes of mathematics. It supports them to have confidence and awareness of ways in which they can apply this knowledge, skill and understanding in mathematics, other learning areas and in their lives.
Teachers use the Australian Mathematics Curriculum to plan learning programs to enable students to understand the key concepts described at each year level. Teachers structure a range of experiences in various contexts for students to build a thorough understanding of important mathematical concepts of number, algebra, measurement, geometry, statistics and probability.
Everyday life is full of opportunities to help your child learn about maths. We use maths many times each day, often without knowing it. Make your daily routines – like cooking, fixing and gardening – a chance for your child to learn maths. The more your child joins in, the more maths will make sense.
It is important to praise your child while they are learning maths. Even if they make a mistake they are having a go and that is good. Children may lose confidence if they struggle with maths. Remind them that other things like skipping, bike riding and playing games also need to be practised a lot. Once we are good at something, we enjoy it much more. If your child doesn’t know the answer, allow a little time to work it out. Give hints and clues. Encourage all attempts.