At Balga Primary we are very fortunate to have a well-equipped science laboratory dedicated to teaching science. This facility provides an ideal environment for our children to investigate, experiment and develop their scientific inquiry skills in collaborative teams. The school has invested in the resources to deliver the Primary Connections Science Program across all year levels. This is an innovative program developed by the Australian Academy of Science, which links the teaching of science with the teaching of literacy. This program is complemented by a significant bank of resources that has been built up over the past five years to provide interesting hooks and make lessons engaging and relevant to children’s lives. These include digital microscopes, astronomy equipment and software, interactive quizzes such as Kahoot on the iPads and the creation of electronic books for children to demonstrate their knowledge in a multimodal way.
We offer a number of activities to stimulate interest and engagement in science throughout the year. These vary from year to year, but typically include:
- Year 5 full day excursion to SciTech.
- Incursions to complement the curriculum, such as Science Alive shows and SciTech Space Dome.
- Annual stargazing community event.
- Science Quest at Dianella Secondary College.
- Incursions from CSIRO.
- Visits to universities to experience campus life and various STEM activities.
Assessment is an important component to ensure that our teaching in science remains relevant and is resulting in progress for all our children. During term 1 all students from years 3 to 6 conducted a standardised scientific investigation on the rate of reaction of a fizzy tablet in different temperatures of water. During the week participating students were withdrawn from class for short verbal interviews to assess their knowledge and engagement in the investigation. We hope that this process will lead to better outcomes in science for all students over time.
Balga Primary School has a rich music program that includes a school choir and an instrumental music program. Music has the capacity to engage, entertain, challenge, inspire and empower students. Studying music stimulates imaginative and innovative responses, critical thinking and aesthetic understanding, and encourages students to reach their creative and expressive potential.
Music exists distinctively in every culture and is a basic expression of human experience. Students’ active participation in music, individually and collaboratively, draws on their own traditions and life experiences. These experiences help them to appreciate and meaningfully engage with music practices and traditions of other times, places, cultures and contexts.
Our dedicated and talented music specialist, Miss Dempsey-Lees, leads our school choir who perform at different events throughout the year. These include One Big voice at Perth Arena and the Swan West Network Showcase. Our instrumental music program, guitar, is run weekly for merit selected students in year six. These students learn how to read music and play the guitar.
Balga Primary School is partnered with SciTech to deliver authentic learning challenges in Technologies that foster curiosity, confidence, persistence, innovation, creativity, respect and cooperation.
In an increasingly technological and complex world, it is important to develop knowledge and skills to analyse and creatively respond to design and/or digital challenges. Students at Balga Primary School learn Technology skills and knowledge through two distinct but related areas:
Design and Technologies, in which students use design thinking and technologies to generate and produce solutions for authentic needs and opportunities
Digital Technologies, in which students use computational thinking and information systems to define, design and implement solutions.
Through the practical application of technologies including digital technologies, our students develop dexterity and coordination through experiential activities. Technologies motivates young people and engages them in a range of learning experiences that are transferable to family and home, constructive leisure activities, community contribution and the world of work.
At Balga Primary School, Year 3, 4 and 5 students are immersed in the Indonesian language and culture. Language learning broadens students’ horizons to include the personal, social, and employment opportunities that an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world presents.
For our students, learning to communicate in two or more languages is a rich, challenging experience of engaging with and participating in the linguistic and cultural diversity of our interconnected world. Our language program builds upon students’ intercultural understanding and sense of identity as they are encouraged to explore and recognise their own linguistic, social, and cultural practices and identities as well as those associated with speakers of the language being learnt.
Visual Arts incorporates all three fields of art, craft and design. Students create visual representations that communicate, challenge and express their own and others’ ideas, both as artists and audience members. They develop perceptual and conceptual understanding, critical reasoning and practical skills through exploring and expanding their understanding of their world, and other worlds.
Visual Arts engages students in a journey of discovery, experimentation and problem-solving relevant to visual perception and visual language. Students undertake this journey by utilising visual techniques, technologies, practices and processes. Visual Arts supports students’ ability to recognise and develop cultural appreciation of visual arts in the past and contemporary contexts through exploring and responding to artists and their artworks.
Physical Education and Sport
Balga Primary School has a strong Physical Education and Sport program that is reflected in the many successes at interschool athletics and sporting events. Our partnership with Sporting Schools means that students get to experience a large variety of sports that are delivered by specialists coaches and our own sports teacher.
Integral to Physical Education at Balga Primary School is the acquisition of movement skills, concepts and strategies to enable our students to confidently, competently and creatively participate in a range of physical activities in various contexts and settings. Students learn about how the body moves; how to approach and resolve challenges; how to optimise movement performance; and the benefits of physical activity to themselves, others and communities. Through movement in a variety of contexts and settings, students acquire, practise, manage and refine personal, interpersonal, social and cognitive skills.
Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS)
At Balga Primary School Humanities and Social Sciences is the study of human behaviour and interaction in social, cultural, environmental, economic and political contexts. Humanities and Social Sciences has a historical and contemporary focus, from personal to global contexts, and considers opportunities and challenges for the future.
Our students learn about HASS through four subjects:
- Geography (PP to Year 6)
- History (PP to Year 6)
- Civics and Citizenship (Year 3 to Year 6)
- Economics and Business (Year 5 to Year 6)
Our students develop the ability to question; think critically; make decisions based on evidence; devise proposals for actions; and communicate effectively. The Humanities and Social Sciences subjects provide students with the knowledge and skills they need to develop a broad understanding of the world in which we live and how people can participate as active and informed citizens in the 21st century.