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Academic Curriculum

Teaching & Learning On-Campus

Deputy Principal - Students, Gabrielle Smith

Deputy Principal - Students, Ms Gabrielle Smith

From Acting Deputy Principal – Teaching & Learning, Ms Gabrielle Smith

It is wonderful to be able to share the diverse range of academic experiences the boys are participating in throughout Term 4. From engaging with a variety of information sources to learn about the festival Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), celebrating the achievements of our Year 12 Marine Studies students, and gaining a greater understanding of what our Year 12 English Studies students are working towards.

Day of the Dead 2020 | From Head of Library Servies, Mr William Robers, Head of Languages, Ms Priscilla Quintana and Spanish Teacher, Mr Daniel Kroll

The Library and the Languages Department worked in collaboration to bring alive the annual festival known as Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). These information sessions took place in the College library.

This Hispanic festival has its origins in Mexico and coincides with the Roman Catholic celebration of All Saints Day on the 1st of November. 

Students Celebrate the Day of the Dead Festival

Students Celebrate the Day of the Dead Festival

Each Year 8 class participated in targeted research and literacy activities to build skills in selecting, summarising, and recording information from a range of written texts. Students had the opportunity to learn about a variety of information sources, such as Clickview educational videos, read through Britannica articles, and review techniques for recording their information for inclusion in a Bibliography for future research tasks. 

Year 12 Marine Studies | From Acting Assistant Head of Science and Vice President of the Marine Teachers Association of NSW, Mr Keith Gawman

For the fourth year in a row, Waverley College has successfully worked with Dive Centre Bondi to teach students how to scuba dive and gain their PADI Open Water Diver certification. Since the beginning of the school’s marine studies courses, it has grown from just nine students to over 50. Waverley College Teacher and PADI Master Instructor, Kyte Gawman, believes the growth of the course is “due in no small part to the chance to go scuba diving and get their (the students) PADI Open Water license”.

With the help of Dive Centre Bondi and PADI Instructors Laurent and Pia, Waverley College was recently able to successfully certify 13 students through the program. Students completed their confined water dives in Waverley College’s swimming pool, while the open water dives were conducted at Camp Cove and Gordons Bay.  During their open water dives, students were excited to spot scorpionfish, cuttlefish, stingrays, dusky flatheads, blue groupers, and many more incredible marine animals underwater.

PADI Open Water Diver certification

PADI Open Water Diver certification

There are myriad reasons for teaching students to scuba dive: it makes learning concepts real, relevant, and more engaging; and when students are engaged they learn more. It also improves attendance and reduces behaviour problems because students are more motivated to turn up to school and participate” said Kyte.

Congratulations to our 13 new PADI Open Water Divers – Evan Athanassiou, Adar Barhaim, Fergus Braham, Kai Bruce-James, Duke Bushby, Joel Caltagirone-Pantano, Billy Deutsch, William Holben, Cass Martin-Newbould, Tobias North,  Jude Sedley, Darcy Sullivan, and Klayton Thorn and congratulation to Daniel Davis, Jackson Green and Hugo Sewell on renewing their training.

Year 12 English Studies | From English Teachers, Mr William Howard and Mr Thomas Pryor

English Studies is an HSC vocational subject whereby the students are involved in learning through a series of practicable activities. The texts that they work with, create and the skills they acquire, can be used in other subjects and for their entry into the world outside of school and academia. This term the students have started the HSC course with the Common Module – Text and Human Experiences. This unit focuses on deepening students’ understanding of how texts represent individual and collective human experience. This can include examining how texts represent human qualities and emotions associated with or arising from human experiences.

Year 12 students in English Studies understanding how texts represent individual and collective human experience

Year 12 students in English Studies understanding how texts represent individual and collective human experience

As a lead in activity to the main text associated with this unit – Kenneth Slessor’s Poetry, the students were to take prior learning in relation to the rubric and how/ human experience can be represented and expressed. They then participated in an activity related to their interest in music and popular culture. The activity required the students to find words that represent human emotion and experience, and then find a song that represents that emotion or experience. They were not limited to one word to allow them to explore slightly more complex emotions and experiences. They were to then summarise what the song was about and find language forms and features associated with lyrics from the song that represents that Human Experience or Emotion.

Year 12 students in English Studies understanding how texts represent individual and collective human experience

Year 12 students in English Studies understanding how texts represent individual and collective human experience

They were encouraged to go further and work with their teachers to describe what Language devices were being used e.g. Alliteration, Simile, and Metaphor. They then discussed their chosen song with the class and noted if there were more emotions and human experiences that could be associated with that song or their chosen lyric. The learning outcome from these activities is to have the students thinking and working in a format that is related to Poetry…Having previously worked with and looked at Sonnets ( translated from Italian as Little Song) and a form that is the basis for the modern song, this would prepare students to be thinking and developing knowledge in the set Poetry Text, and therefore scaffolds them into the learning of the main text.

The boys took the opportunity of choice and enjoyed the opportunity to review prior learning through texts of interest and relating to the world of popular culture. This is an example of creating learning to engage the boys and how English Studies can be impactful to student learning and growth with purpose and choice in the learning activities, which has been going on with these Boys throughout 2020.