Junior School

Photo: Matthew Syres

The McDonald College Junior School is focused on children achieving optimal learning results. These statements are not simply words to us. This fact is reflected in how we deliver our curriculum, the way we teach, and what we expect of our students in both Academic and Performing Arts. We take great pride in the fact that we have created an inviting and welcoming environment where our students feel free to learn, express their creativity and grow. Our results reflect the cultivation of an atmosphere where students do more than just learn.  They truly grow, achieve and develop.

 

Our Educational Environment

A key aspect of our philosophy is that by creating a focused environment, we promote the kind of dynamic and interactive learning conditions that are essential for the development of young minds. Through a combination of individualised attention and quality teacher/student interaction, our junior school students are able to blossom. In addition to this positive and interactive learning environment, we provide students with a broader and more diverse curriculum than what is offered at other schools. This aspect helps to keep students interested in learning, as the overall process is more varied and dynamic. All of these aspects serve to foster what we think of as a whole school community where there is a great deal of interaction and mentoring among students.

 

Photo: Matthew Syres

 

Performance is at the Core of Everything We Do

At other schools, junior students who are interested in Performing Arts may feel ostracised due to their interests. Of course, the exact opposite is true at The McDonald College. Each day our students embrace Performing Arts.  We have discovered that this translates into happy students who learn more effectively.

Creativity and lateral thinking is the norm at The McDonald College. The curriculum is structured so that the Board of Studies syllabus is enhanced by allowing students to creatively respond through a variety of mediums. It is not unusual for students to submit an English assessment supported with a song, a short film or visual design. We allow students to express their creativity and explore the curriculum in ways that emphasise depth and meaning. The freedom to respond creatively is highly motivating for creative students.

 

CURRICULUM

The McDonald College Junior School works to the guidelines of NESA (NSW Education Standards Authority) and is fully accredited and registered to teach the Key Learning Areas as set out by the Board of Studies.

 

ACADEMIC SUBJECTS

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Science & Technology
  • Human Society & Environment
  • Creative Arts
  • Personal Development Health
  • Physical Education

 

BENEFICIAL LEARNING

  • Small class sizes (average 20 students/class)
  • Individual Learning Plans for each student
  • Teaching of French in every class
  • Enhanced Science Study using Secondary School laboratories
  • Choir & Debating Classes
  • Use of Secondary School art facilities
  • A structured and developed transition from Primary to Secondary School

 

Photo: Matthew Syres

PERFORMING ARTS

Junior students participate in 1.5 hours of Performing Arts training per day, which is structured around their academic timetable. PA time is programmed to include a range of classes to ensure that primary students have an all-round understanding and exposure to a number of streams in order to prepare them for senior year level entry, which commences at Year 7. These subjects include:

  • Orchestral Instrument Program
  • Classical Dance Program
  • Acting Program
  • Musical Theatre program (Years 5-6 only)

 

Students from Years 3 to 6 participate in an elective class each Tuesday morning. The following classes are offered within the Junior School are:

  • Music Composition
  • Writing Group
  • Technology
  • Rock Band
  • Art

 

ELITE TENNIS

Our Voyager Tennis Academy program is suitable for Year 5 entry and up only. This program operates when performing arts classes are on, with 1.5 hours devoted each day to training at Sydney Olympic Park. The program includes transportation to and from the school for all of our Junior School tennis students.

 

USEFUL INFORMATION