English Department News March 2014

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome all of our students back to Humanities for 2014. As always, we have a big year in store for our students. I’ve included some information about the curriculum we will be following for the year, and I would encourage parents and caregivers to become involved with your child’s education in the Humanities by asking your child what they have been doing in Humanities and by remaining in contact with your child’s teacher. We love to hear from you, and we are happy to talk with you about your child’s education.

Tim Bennett
Humanities Team Leader

Year 8 English

In their introduction to secondary school English, Year 8 students work on improving both receptive (Reading, Listening and Viewing) and productive (Writing and Speaking) skills. Curriculum content has been developed in alignment with Australian Curriculum requirements. Over the year, students move through units of work including personal recounts, short and more complex narratives, persuasive writing, poetry, and visual images and their connection to advertising.

Year 8 Humanities and Social Sciences

Year 8 students begin their secondary Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS) experience by building skills in Geography. Students develop an understanding of mapping, climate graphs and report writing, then move into a History unit of work aligned to Australian Curriculum requirements with depths studies covering ‘Medieval Europe’, ‘The Black Death’ and ‘Shogunate Japan’. Students finally engage in studies of economics and civic responsibility. Investigation, communication and participation processes underlie all learning activities in HASS at Belmont City College.

Year 9 English

Students focus in Year 9 on consolidating functional literacy skills including targeted reading strategies and writing for various audiences and purposes. NAPLAN is held in Term Two before students progress into studies of narrative reading and creative writing. Further receptive skills are the focus in Semester Two including consolidating viewing skills through interrogation of non-fiction texts, news articles, advertising and feature film study. Students maintain an emphasis on productive skills involving the development of formal and informal text responses to a variety of written, visual and multi-modal texts.

Year 9 Humanities and Social Sciences

Year 9 HASS begins with a unit on biomes incorporating Australian Curriculum requirements in developing skills from the Geography curriculum area. Students explore plantation crops and the impact of global agricultural practices on food security. This leads on to a geographical study of migration patterns in and around local areas, tourism, urban settlements and trade, investigating the way we are connected. Students then move into depth studies from the Australian Curriculum History curriculum which explore Australian history. They are ‘Movement of People’, ‘Making of a nation’ and ‘World War One’. Students end the year learning about politics, law and civic society.

Year 10 English

Year 10 English students learn to engage with higher order concepts in relation to their consumption of a variety of texts. They begin with an extended narrative study looking at both short and more complex forms and produce creative and analytical responses to these. Students move into a study of non-fiction writing techniques looking at contemporary non-fiction writing before producing their own feature article. Students sit both the Online Literacy and Numeracy Assessment (OLNA) for the first time in March and a Year 10 examination at the end of Term 2. In Semester 2, students change their focus to a study of documentary film before interrogating the representation of news across multi-modal platforms in Australia and the world. Year 10 students consolidate their functional literacy skills throughout the year and develop increasingly sophisticated strategies for consuming and responding to texts.

Year 10 Humanities and Social Sciences

Students begin Year 10 with a Australian Curriculum History depth studies on ‘World War Two’, ‘Rights and Freedoms’ and ‘Globalisation’. These depth studies ask students to investigate and comprehend Australian involvement in conflict, the European theatre including the Holocaust and major global movement of peoples. They are asked to study and respond to these depth studies by considering the wider implications of Australia’s behaviour on the world stage while honing their investigation, communication and participation skills. Year 10 students sit a Year 10 examination at the end of Term 2. They then begin an integrated Geography unit. Students build skills before completing an in-depth field trip and response activity based on major infrastructure developments in the Perth area. This unit asks students to engage in higher level thinking in terms of impacts of plans on stakeholders and the environment.

Year 10 Study Skills Camp

Before the Year 10 AEP class of 2013 even got to Pemberton for the annual Study Skills camp, we had completed some incredible fundraising.

We had a very successful BBQ fundraiser at Bunnings. Despite Prue Warburton almost fainting due to the hot-plate heat, the event went off without a hitch. Che Smith-Harring’s spruiking and tunes, Sam Young and Ash McLennan’s hot-plate dancing and Caitlin and Tachi’s’s all day energy, along with everyone else that took part, were highlights. And of course, the $1413 profit!

Year 10 AEP class members also took part in a Read-a-thon. Jackie Eades cleaned up with her reading and sponsorship, raising over $100 on her own, and Shannyn Murray’s unwavering family support saw her top $50. Well done to both girls and all others who got sponsors and read and read and read.

Our final fundraiser was the annual BCC Quiz Night. The support shown by parents and families to create goodies for sale on the evening was incredible, and a big thanks must go to the Astichiws and the Waiomios for their cake making prowess. Also, the night wouldn’t have worked without the students who did all of the scoring, raffle ticket selling and kiosk attending.

Finally, the staff and their families and friends who provided so much support for the night must also be congratulated. Jo Gordon, particularly, was amazing with her energy and the way she made use of her networks to ensure the prize pool was really impressive. The Maths/Science team table took out first prize and we raised $1150 towards subsidising the camp. Just awesome!

And it all led to this: the 2013 Year 10 Study Skills Camp! We left on Monday December 9th and stayed in Pemberton for four nights, returning Friday December 13th. Ms Shafran, Ms Paterniti and Mr Bennett, along with a raucous group of 22 ATAR pathway students, took part in activities that were both fun and challenging, including the Walpole Tree Top Walk and visiting the Ancient Empire, the WOW Walpole Cruise, the Gloucester Tree Climb and the Gloucester Tree to Cascades Bushwalk, the Pemberton Challenge, a trip to the Yeagarup Sand Dunes and lunch at Yeagarup Lake, a Treasure Hunt and the Maze/Low ropes course.

Some highlights must be mentioned. The WOW cruise was just awesome. Gary Muir, the guide and expert on all things Walpole, was brilliant and taught us so much. The camp facilities and food were excellent, and Mark Hudson was knowledgeable, challenging and no-nonsense, the perfect camp manager. Pembie Pool, tiger snake notwithstanding, was perfect, as were the fireside chats, Miss P’s impromptu dance classes, morning serenades, bus adventuring and… did I mention the food?

In amongst all of this, we studied how best to cope with the demands of Year 11 and 12, and what needs to be done to achieve success in upper school at Belmont City College. It was a wonderful experience and we were so proud of the BCC crew. Well done to all concerned. 2014, anyone?