Literacy is a major priority at Monmia Primary School. Explicit teaching of Reading, Writing, Viewing, Speaking and Listening are taught for a minimum of 10 hours per week. Literacy is also an important part of every other curriculum area, as the language of Mathematics, ICT, Physical Education, Science, Humanities, Health and the Arts are developed, each with their own specific vocabulary.
At Monmia Primary School, we understand the value of a rich curriculum and exemplary teaching, and their impact on student learning. We therefore have a Literacy Coach outside of the classroom, who works with teachers on continually improving their literacy knowledge, resources, skills and strategies, to ensure their teaching is powerful and successful in growing each and every student. Parents/Guardians are also welcome to make a time to speak to the Coach about any specific literacy needs their child may have.
Teachers plan, assess and work together collaboratively in each of the Professional Learning Communities, ensuring that every child is known and cared for by every teacher in that community. A range of Literacy Assessment is used across the year to understand the strengths of each student, and also the gaps. We constantly establish where they are up to in their learning, and where to go to next. Teachers confer regularly with students in Reading and Writing, setting goals and making decisions on how best to achieve them. Students take responsibility for working determinedly on those goals, and move on to challenge themselves with new ones once they have success. The AusVELS English curriculum is used as the basis for teacher planning.
Our learning is visible, with our goals up and accessible for students to track their own journey. The explicitness of lessons is of the utmost importance, with Learning Intentions and the Success Criteria clearly visible, ensuring students know what the expectations are for them to be able to do, to achieve that learning.
Research has shown that every child should be reading at least 90 minutes per day, to improve in all areas of English. Independent reading and individual conferences with goal setting are a focus every day. Investigations in Spelling (including phonics and sound investigations), Punctuation and Grammar ensure a richer learning than just learning spelling words or punctuation. We believe that students need to understand why literacy works in the way it does, as students will learn and remember better if it has meaning for them. They know why, and when literacy rules are used.
Meaningful writing using the Writers Workshop process is also a daily focus. We gather ideas in our Writer’s Notebook, plan, draft, edit, revise, confer with peers and then the teacher, publish and celebrate our writing. These steps must all be present, but we may often have to go back and repeat some of the processes as we write richly and meaningfully, with a purpose.
Monmia Primary School believes in celebrating Literacy, involving the community in Education Week, Literacy/Numeracy and Book Week. Families are invited to attend special events in the school and share the exciting learning and fun.