Learning, Middle School
Laying the foundations of success
We challenge our Middle School students to develop mentally, physically and academically, laying the foundations for success in the senior years.
Our students study core subjects, essential for development of general knowledge and important skills, with opportunities to choose electives.
Our Middle School students study the New South Wales Australian curriculum stages 3 and 4.
At AISM we assist your child in the settling-in process by surrounding them with a team of support teachers such as the Homeroom teachers, Year coordinates and buddies who help with the transition of students into Middle School. This approach ensures the transition between campuses is smooth and less daunting and your child has a sense of support and belonging. We deliberately link what is learnt and taught across the two campuses to also ease the transition process for your child. This support is focussed on making sure your child has the support they need to be successful in the senior phase of learning.
English and English as an Additional Language (EAL)
In their study of English, students continue to develop their critical and imaginative faculties and broaden their capacity for cultural understanding. They examine the contexts of language usage to understand how meaning is shaped by a variety of social factors. As students' command of English grows, they are able to question, assess, challenge and reformulate information and use creative and analytical language to identify and clarify issues and solve problems. They become imaginative and confident users of a range of electronic and digital technologies and understand and reflect on the ongoing impact of these technologies on society. These skills and understandings allow them to develop their control of language in ways that will help them in lifelong learning, in their careers and in life.
In Mathematics we aim for our students to be confident, creative users and communicators of mathematics, able to investigate, represent and interpret situations in their personal and work lives and as active citizens. We also develop an increasingly sophisticated understanding of mathematical concepts and fluency with mathematical processes, and pose and solve problems and reason in number and algebra, measurement and geometry, and statistics and probability. Students also recognise connections between the areas of mathematics and other disciplines and appreciate mathematics as an accessible, enjoyable discipline to study, and an important aspect of lifelong learning.
For year 6, enrichment classes are available for advanced learners.
In Science we aim to foster students' sense of wonder and expand their natural curiosity about the world around them to develop their understanding of, interest in, and enthusiasm for science and technology. We also ensure the development of student competence and creativity in applying the processes of working scientifically and working technologically to appreciate and understand the natural environment and made environment, as well as enabling students to confidently respond to needs and opportunities when designing solutions relevant to science and technology in their lives.
Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE) – History and Geography
The aim of the teaching of History is to stimulate students' interest in and enjoyment of exploring the past, to develop a critical understanding of the past and its impact on the present, to develop the critical skills of historical inquiry and to enable students to participate as active, informed and responsible citizens.
The aim of teaching Geography is to stimulate students’ interest in and engagement with the world. Through geographical inquiry they develop an understanding of the interactions between people, places and environments across a range of scales to become informed, responsible and active citizens.
Languages Other Than English (LOTE)
Our students must choose to study one language in Years 6-8 from the following four languages:
For Year 6, enrichment classes are available for advanced learners.
Over a three year period, their Language Studies should give students the confidence and ability to select a language as an elective in Years 9 and 10 and beyond.
Design and Technology
Design and Technology provides broad experience in a range of contexts. The design and development of quality projects gives students the opportunity to identify problems and opportunities, research and investigate existing solutions, analyse data and information, generate, justify and evaluate ideas, and experiment with technologies to manage and produce design projects. The diversity of approaches to design projects provides the scope to develop high order thinking, future thinking and understanding of conceptual principles. The design process caters for a variety of student needs, abilities and interests. The flexible and creative consideration of parameters encourages students to take intellectual risks and experiment with resources when developing projects.
Personal Development, Health and Physical Education (PDHPE)
Personal Development, Health and Physical Education contributes significantly to the cognitive, social, emotional, physical and spiritual development of students. It provides opportunities for students to learn about, and practise ways of, adopting and maintaining a healthy, productive and active life. It also involves students learning through movement experiences that are both challenging and enjoyable, and improving their capacity to move with skill and confidence in a variety of contexts. It also promotes the value of physical activity in their lives.
Visual Arts has a significant role within the curriculum through providing learning opportunities designed to encourage students to understand the visual arts, including the different kinds of creative works they, and others, make.
Visual Arts fosters interest and enjoyment in the making and studying of art. It builds understanding of the role of art, in all forms of media, in contemporary and historical cultures and visual worlds. In contemporary societies many kinds of knowledge are increasingly managed through imagery and visual codes and much of students’ knowledge is acquired in this way. Visual Arts empowers students to engage in visual forms of communication. The subject of Visual Arts serves to facilitate an interpretation and organisation of such information.
Music combines the development of affective, cognitive and psychomotor domains in the act of making music. It allows for the expression of emotion and imagination, the intellect and the exploration of values. Music fosters an understanding of continuity and change, and of the connections between different times and cultures. The nature of musical study also allows students to develop their capacity to manage their own learning, engage in problem solving, work collaboratively and engage in activity that reflects the real world practice of performers, composers and audiences. Music fosters knowledge, understanding and skills that contribute to lifelong processes of learning and to the appreciation and enjoyment of music.
While students will develop knowledge and skills in each of the individual areas of performing, composing and listening, the integration of experiences in these areas enhances the understanding and manipulation of the concepts of music in differing musical contexts.
Music in Years 6–10 provides students with opportunities to extend their musical knowledge and the Music elective course will serve as a pathway for further formal study in Music in the HSC.
Drama is an art form with a discrete body of knowledge including conventions, history, skills and methods of working. Drama encourages a cooperative approach to exploring the world through enactment.
The study of Drama draws on the contemporary drama and theatre practices of making, performing and appreciating drama. These practices are active, experiential, critical and reflective.
While students develop knowledge, understanding and skills that pertain to each of these practices, it is vital to integrate experiences in these areas in order to effectively realise the outcomes. In their appreciation of drama and theatre, students are aware of the collaborative contribution of actors, directors, playwrights, designers and technicians to productions. Manipulation of a wide range of technologies (including traditional, electronic and digital applications helps) students achieve particular dramatic intentions.
LOTE- Languages Other Than English
The study of a foreign language will help students to better understand other cultures, expressions and styles of communication and the more languages one speaks, the better access he or she will have to different people and resources from other countries. Acquiring a second language will also exercise the students’ brain and improve their native tongue as it teaches them the mechanics and structures behind any language. The four skills taught are Listening and Responding, Reading and Responding, Writing and Speaking. The use of technology in the language classroom continues to engage students in the learning process by providing authentic examples of the target culture and allowing teachers to connect their classrooms in other countries where the target language is spoken.
An important element of the curriculum is outdoor education through the Camp Program. Year 6 and Year 7 students attend a three or four day camp in Malaysia which has a focus on team building, resilience and learning about the environment which surrounds them. Year 8 students attend an international camp that exposes students to service learning, which is an integral part of their pastoral care program.