Kununurra District High School has an enrolment of approximately 240 students from Kindergarten to Year 1. Our Kindergarten and Pre-primary students are schooled in a dedicated early childhood centre on the campus. From Year 1, our students move to the very grown up ‘Homestead’ area, where they enjoy a shared kitchen and are within easy access of each other for shared activities. It is commonly regarded that the early years of schooling of Kindergarten through to Year 2, to be some of the most important years in a child’s education. It is in these formative years that children create some strong habits for life-long learning. Parent involvement is paramount in ensuring children can achieve success (both academically and socially), and therefore parents and other family members are encouraged to participate in their child’s developmental journey throughout school, particularly in the earlier years. 2013 saw the implementation of compulsory schooling in Pre-primary. This means it is now compulsory for children to attend a Pre-primary program, whereas previously it wasn’t until Year 1. In 2016, Kununurra District High School was recognised for its fantastic early childhood program and became a National Quality Standards Lead School.
OUR EARLY CHILDHOOD AREA
In 2017, the Early Childhood Area at Kununurra District High School comprises of four Kindergarten classes (held in two separate buildings on different days) and three Pre-primary classes. There is also a Pre-primary/Year One class to be housed in the Homestead area along with the Year One students. There are Interactive whiteboards in every Primary classroom. The outdoor area of the centre contains a number of specific play areas as well as lots of open spaces for practising gross motor skills such as running and throwing. Parent groups have contributed greatly throughout the years, to raise funds and to add even more exciting areas to our playground. Their efforts and dedication are sincerely appreciated.
Currently we have 3 Year One classes and one combined Pre-primary and Year One class. Our Junior Primary aims to build upon the literacy and numeracy skills formed in Kindergarten and Pre-primary by providing a strongly sequenced curriculum.
The focus within the Kindy – Year 1 Sub-school is to provide an engaging and motivated curriculum that builds upon the foundation skills of literacy and numeracy. We aim to provide students with the necessary skills and knowledge to ensure success throughout their learning journey, along with a focus on their social emotional development.
Continuing on from its implementation in 2012, this and other Sub-schools will be continuing the implementation of the John Fleming Framework of effective teaching, by using the explicit teaching model. The aim of this program is to consolidate basic skills and knowledge to a level of automaticity (where the skill/knowledge is repeated or retrieved immediately). Teachers deliver new concepts by using the I Do, We Do, You Do approach. This approach ensures that students have many supported opportunities to learn a concept before moving onto the next step and completing tasks independently. Another key component of this approach is the “warm-up” where literacy and numeracy skills and knowledge are repeated daily. It is imperative that children attend school every day, so as not to miss any of the key components of this learning process. We also include many play-based learning experiences, where students are lead through play to achieve particular outcomes/skills or knowledge.
All schools throughout Australia are guided by the same curriculum. In WA, this curriculum is known as the Western Australian Curriculum. The Western Australian Curriculum also incorporates the Early Years Learning Framework, which guides all early childhood facilities, from Day-cares through to schools.
The Curriculum areas taught from Pre-primary at KDHS are: English, Mathematics, Science, Humanities and Social Sciences, Technologies, Health and Physical Education, Physical Education and Health, as well as the Arts. Although this may look different in Kindergarten to Year 1, the core concepts remain the same and are built upon each year.
Our classrooms within this Sub-school aim to promote a high standard of work and behaviour.
Behaviour is closely monitored by the classroom teacher and rules are based around the School Behaviour Expectations: I am Respectful, I am Responsible, I am Prepared and I am Safe.
Behaviour is tracked and a record kept (both positive and negative) in the school based system and parents are regularly informed of their child’s behaviour.
VALUE ADDING ACTIVITIES
Throughout the year, students have the opportunity to participate in many activities to enhance their learning. These activities include:
- Miriwoong Language Nest program (for Pre-Primary and Year 1 students)
- NAIDOC Week
- Simultaneous Story Time
- Various excursions, including farm visits and other points of interest in Kununurra.
- Various fundraising activities
- The Annual ECE Xmas concert
- Sports Carnival
- Mother’s and Father’s Day events
- Art exhibitions
- Rewards Days
- BluEarth activities
- Sub-school assemblies
Michelle McKittrick is the Deputy Principal in charge of this Sub-school. There are 12 teachers employed in the K-Yr 1 Sub-school. They are as follows: Sara Smith (Blue and Red Geckoes Kindy), Hannah Beatty (Blue Joeys Kindy), Kyna Cookson (Red Joeys), Lisa McArthur (Pre-primary), Delwyn Howard (Pre-primary), Alice Kelly (Pre-primary), Sarah Thomson (Pre-primary/Year 1), Angela Dwyer (Year 1), Sonia Hunter (Year 1), Gemma Hayley (Year 1), Bec Bell (DOTT teacher for Geckoes) and Emily Ross (DOTT teacher for Pre-primary classes). There are also 4 specialist teachers – Jenny Pufke, Ed MacNeill, Elise McKee and Josh Morris, who provide Music, Visual Arts, Technologies and Physical Education
There are also a number of people employed to support classrooms across this Sub-school. There are education assistants designated to each Early Childhood class, as well as some shared throughout the whole sub-school. There are two AIEOs (Aboriginal Islander Education Officers) within this Sub-school and one SBAO (School Based Attendance Officer). There are also some special needs assistants that work with students whom have diagnosed learning problems or conditions that impede their learning success.
CARES, CONCERNS OR QUERIES
We are an extremely kind and caring Sub-school and realise that for many students (and parents) that are starting school for the first time, this is a very important, yet emotional time. If you have a child within this Sub-school and have some cares or concerns about your child’s progress or emotional wellbeing, please do not hesitate to see you child’s friendly and helpful classroom teacher.