Students working on a math problemStudents painting outsideStudents using iPads outsideStudents studying nature

Scaffolded Literacy (formerly known as Accelerated Literacy) is a way of teaching that helps students to read and write complex texts with the support of their teachers and peers. The pedagogy is based on the theory that supports English within the Australian Curriculum.

Scaffolded Literacy was developed in response to the needs of Indigenous learners in Australia but due to its focus on how writers write and why they make the choices they do, it can be used in mainstream classes with a range of learners. Most schools using Scaffolded Literacy pedagogy in South Australia are mainstream Primary, Secondary and Area schools.

Teachers’ involvement with the program requires a commitment on their part to learning how to implement Scaffolded Literacy. They attend four days of intensive training and are then supported by observations and discussions with a Scaffolded Literacy Consultant to refine their understandings and practice.

To learn more about Scaffolded Literacy at Cowandilla you can view our brochure for parents.

 

Being able to solve problems using mathematics is one of life’s essential skills. Teachers and School Services Officers are involved in on-going, intensive training to use the Australian Curriculum. We are focussing on developing students’ deep understanding of our number system and how it works. A maths consultant works with staff to improve our pedagogy and ensure that the learning opportunities we offer are rigorous. Test results show a steady annual improvement in student learning outcomes in mathematics.

Parents play a vital role in understanding the daily challenges that require mathematical solutions. Periodically the school runs workshops for parents to learn how to support their children’s learning in mathematics.

 

Student Wellbeing is of fundamental importance to our learning program. We help students learn about their emotions and make positive behaviour choices to be able to best access the curriculum.

We use Mindset and Restorative Practices when working through behaviour issues. The basis of this process is to allow children the opportunity to take responsibility for their behaviour and to reduce the hurt and harm their behaviour may have caused. Conversations are based upon the following:

  • What happened?
  • I chose to break the rules because…
  • To change my behaviour I will…
  • What have I learned by my mistake?
  • What better choice can I make in the future?

Mindset and Restorative Practices underpin our school values of Respect and Responsibility and this process has been hugely successful at this site.

Our Student Wellbeing Leader supports children with their behaviour choices. She works with students and families in creating and implementing supportive interventions. She is available to meet with parents and caregivers to discuss their concerns and is a pathway for referral to support agencies in the wider community.

For more information, you can view our Behaviour Code, and Student Information for Bullying, Harassment and Violence documents.

 

Learning with Digital Technologies is an important aspect of our curriculum. Students are taught skills to use technology in their learning across a range of subject areas. Our learning programs include specific teaching of skills, and discussion of strategies to empower students to become confident, responsible users of technology. We place a strong emphasis on teaching students about online safety.

The Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies is the framework used to teach students about digital systems, online safety, data, and digital solutions (including basic programming concepts).

We have a 1:1 iPad program across our Year 3/4 – 6/7 mainstream classes. Each student in these classes has a school owned device, for use at school. Our Early Years and IELC classes have shared iPads.

All classes have large screen interactive panels, which enable the whole class to view the computer screen. We also have 14 Mac computers in our Resource Centre, which are used for class lessons. The Resource Centre computers and iPads are also available for student use, on a roster system, during second break.

We use a variety of apps and online resources, and have a high-speed fibre-optic internet connection to support this. The school has a highly skilled technical support team, including a Network Manager, IT Support Officer and Learning Resources Manager/ Digital Technologies Coordinator.

Our hall is well equipped as a multimedia facility with a large retractable screen connected to the computer network; Blu-ray & CD players; microphones; lighting and a (non-permanent) stage for performances. These facilities are used by students across all year levels.