WL Overview Years 3 to 8

Walker Learning provides a platform of practical strategies to schools which seek high levels of student engagement and motivation across middle and upper primary and early secondary years with opportunities  for students to be independent learners who are acquiring skills  for learning and for life, not just "content".

The emphasis of  WL  is not just  about the "what" (curriculum) but most importantly  about the "how" (pedagogy).

The philosophy and implementation of  WL consistently demonstrates that engaging children is the first fundamental 'must' for successful teaching and learning  in a sustained way.

"Compliance does not equate to engagement"

The middle and upper years of primary often reflect increased dissatisfaction and disengagement of children with their learning. We want to set children up in the middle and primary years to succeed, to thrive and flourish rather than just cope or struggle or fail. We want children as they transition into the middle primary years to enter another seamless set of strategies that build upon their first three years of school; that will provide continuity, consistency and continue to provide opportunities for individual interests.

The transition between grade two to three is also viewed as a significant pathway into another part of child development. Children move out of the unique characteristics that define the early childhood years and into a slightly higher level of thinking, processing and understanding.  WL seeks to ensure that children moving from their early childhood classrooms into the higher grades also are provided with a seamless and consistent set of practices and strategies that maximise engagement and motivation. We want children in these years to have a sense of empowerment and ownership of their own learning, to view the learning process as meaningful to their lives now and for the future. We want them to have a range of choices within the limits set by the teacher and to learn to identity some of their own learning needs as well as to continue to build upon their self esteem and identity.

Teaching and learning in the 21st century requires acknowledgement that successful education needs to provide a set of fundamental foundation skills that are transferable and adaptable for whatever the future holds.

WL not only ensures that curriculum obligations for "content" and skills are maintained and enhanced but it is achieved by teaching strategies that truly and effectively engage, empower and provide greater ownership and choice for students.  It is after all, the students learning that is most important, not educators predetermined interests/topics.

Some of the key intentions and aims of Walker Learning in the year levels 3-8 are designed to :

  • Provide a voice for students to express their opinions
  • To learn to appreciate and respect the views of others
  • To develop their own value system and appreciate the different values of wider society
  • To relate the issues, skills and knowledge of science, history, health, politics, literacy and numeracy, technology and other areas of learning to their own lives and to develop transferable and relevant skills
  • To develop effective interpersonal skills in relationships and communication skills
  • To develop creativity, exploration and open mindedness
  • To grow in awareness of the world, society and associated issues that impact on the world

Some of the key elements of Walker Learning year levels  3-8  include:

  • Communication board for greeting and meeting each morning, posting affirmations, information, clinic teaching groups, quotes and learning intentions.
  • Weekly Class meetings which relate to external, global or community needs and issues rather than in house behavioral issues.
  • Learning Environment that is set up to reflect personal choices in where to sit, in groups, alone, with furniture that has a range of options including tables, sofas, workshop areas, technology.
  • Education Research Project each term which replaces traditional topics of inquiry and relates to National Curriculum subject areas for content but where students also include an issue of interest from their own lives
  • Literacy and numeracy continues explicitly in discreet teaching modules but is also included in ERP's
  • Clinic groups of small teaching led by teachers and by students and other community members