Lowood State School, the principles of Explicit Instruction (Dr Anita Archer), High Impact Instruction (Dr Jim Knight), and a multi-age philosophy, underpin the educational programs offered from Prep to Year Seven.
To maximise teaching and learning outcomes, teachers at Lowood do not operate in isolated, privatised classrooms. Instead, they are members of intensive teaching teams (P/1, 1/2, 3/4, 5/6/7) and work collaboratively to deliver curriculum units in English, Mathematics, Science, History and Geography using the Australian Curriculum content descriptors as the intent/focus. QCAR Essential Learnings provide the curriculum for HPE, The Arts and Technology. Much learning in these latter areas is embedded into the school’s Kitchen-Garden Program which is an integral element of our school curriculum.
Our key focus is the continued improvement across the school of our Literacy (particularly reading) and Numeracy results and the on-going adoption of whole-school, consistent pedagogies (teaching practices) in each. Teachers in all classes utilise Guided Reading and Explicit Instruction as key elements of their daily Literacy block and an inquiry/investigative approach to learning is emphasised in Maths & Science, as highlighted by the involvement of classroom teachers in partnerships with UQ and QUT to improve the teaching of Maths. From 2015, Mathematics lessons will be structured to incorporate the YuMi Deadly Maths process (Reality-Abstraction-Maths-Reflection) and will involve students in increased hands-on and active learning.
The multi-age philosophy, which has been adopted at Lowood SS recognises that students learn and develop at different rates, and hence should not be held to time constraints (ie lock-step ‘grading’). The multi-age classroom is an environment where the teacher provides a developmentally appropriate curriculum based on each child’s unique progress, growth and needs. This philosophy, and the resulting class structure across the school, enables our school vision (R.I.S.E) to be enacted in all classrooms.