Nicholas Smith, Head of Junior School
There are lots of exciting things happening in our Junior School. Year 3 launch their Currency Creek Custodian Program this week, Junior School choir rehearsals, the expansion of our Early Leaning Centre, the introduction of a mid-year Prep. class and tomorrow’s Open Day!
Year 3 Currency Creek Custodian Program
On Friday 24 March, our Year 3 students started their signature learning experience, the Currency Creek Custodian Program.
This is a unique opportunity where our Year 3 students will attend our EcoCentre at Currency Creek every Friday to undertake their learning.
Year 3 is a special year in a child’s learning journey; it is the transition point from Junior Primary to Primary School. Developmentally, students start to develop and maintain friendships differently. They begin to move away from parallel play with their peers to playing and interacting in a different manner with a more select group of friends. It is therefore vital that new friendship skills need to be targeted.
Whilst the whole school Friendology program does a fantastic job in covering many of these skills, we feel there is an opportunity to spend additional time explicitly teaching these skills. Along with the explicit teaching of these skills, we also feel that Year 3 is the ideal time to introduce a tailor-made program that creates opportunities to:
- Immerse and engage in the natural environment
- Take action
- Share knowledge
This, along with an additional focus on wellbeing, will help to engage the students in a range of group work activities that will promote working as a team and interacting positively with each other.
What does the Currency Creek Custodians Program involve?
Immersion and engagement in the natural environment.
- Encouraging a sense of wonder about the natural environment and a ‘want’ and ‘need’ to responsibly care for it.
- Engaging with the space using all the senses through nature journaling and other nature play based activities.
- Science-based topics teaching about different plant and animal species and the connections within the ecosystems at the site.
- Learning about the history of the site, past uses and the story of how it has changed.
Action – Taking action to responsibly care for the natural environment.
- Exploring how our actions impact the environment.
- Monitoring of different plant and animal species.
- Observing and recording changes in the site over time.
- Propagation of local plant species to be used in habitat restoration at the site, and maybe the wider community.
- Entrepreneurship activities that help to raise money for other projects.
- Involvement in projects in the wider community and making connections with other organisations– for example the Southern Bell Frog, Butterfly Conservation SA, Local Friends Groups etc.
Sharing our knowledge – passing it on.
- Hosting other groups of students/schools at the site each term to pass on their knowledge on different topics.
- Inviting parents/grandparents for a BBQ late night activity in Term 2 as an introduction to the program (more information to come) and one in Term 4 as a celebration.
- Presenting at JS Assemblies.
- Working with Year 4s on sustainability projects at school – Kitchen Gardens, Cut flower gardens, recycling and waste management etc.
The wellbeing themes will be threaded throughout the week and will occur both at our College and at Currency Creek.
The Currency Creek Custodianship initiative will support and deepen Year 3 students’ engagement with their learning across all learning areas. While at Currency Creek, literacy and numeracy skills will be authentically applied and practised through carefully planned units of work in both Science and HASS (Humanities and Social Sciences). This will enable students to grasp new concepts in a meaningful and purposeful way, one that we feel they will be bursting to share with others, providing a unique opportunity for our students to learn how they can contribute and shape their world now and into the future. Using the beautiful surroundings of the outdoor EcoCentre classrooms, students will also be offered an amazing resource for their Arts program.
We hope that the children will not only gain a lot from this program but will find it a highly engaging and unique experience.
Thank you to Mr John Freebairn and Mrs Stephanie Gurner for facilitating this exciting program for our Year 3 students.
We have limited spaces still available to enrol in Year 3, if you know of anyone that may be interested in this wonderful educational program.
Junior School Choir
The Choir is going from strength to strength and now has approximately 58 registered members. Choir is a way to develop musical ability, work as a part of a team and meet new people. We are very lucky to have such a passionate Music teacher in Miss Pointon, ably assisted by Mrs Cope, to run the Junior School Choir.
The Choir will be performing at Open Day this Saturday if you would like to see and hear them in action.
Early Learning Centre Expansion
The ELC has been given approval to expand the number of students it is licenced to facilitate a program for. It will expand into an existing classroom to accommodate for the additional enrolments.
Little Investigators offers an amazing learning program for 3 and 4 year olds. We are looking forward to the expansion of its offering.
Mid-Year Prep Class
Term 3 will see the introduction of our first stand-alone Prep. class. This will be a unique, school-based offering for children who turn 5 between May and October. Already we have a full class of eager learners interested in being part of our inaugural Prep. class. These students will then join our 2024 Reception starters to begin their Investigator College journey.
We are looking forward to seeing everyone at the Open Day tomorrow. It will be a wonderful way of participating in some of the amazing programs and experiences Investigator College has to offer.
We look forward to seeing you there.
Term Dates 2023
Term 1: Tuesday 31 January – Friday 14 April
*Thursday 6 April – 12pm closure for Easter weekend – OSHC Bookings available
Term 2: Tuesday 2 May – Friday 30 June
*Tuesday 13 June – Student Free Day
Term 3: Tuesday 25 July – Friday 29 September
Term 4: Monday 16 October – Friday 8 December