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Our School Learning and Curriculum in Junior School

Ivanhoe Girls' provides a challenging education for our students, with many opportunities for finding and developing individual passions.

Deep Learning

In the 21st century, just having knowledge is no longer enough. Students need deeper levels of understanding in order to create and apply knowledge to solve complex problems. It is more important than ever to develop skills in critical thinking and the ability to apply knowledge through authentic and collaborative tasks.  At Ivanhoe Girls', we are committed to developing deeper learning in all areas of the curriculum, helping students develop the skills needed to succeed in life and work.  


Our English program is designed to develop the ability to speak, listen, read, view and write with enjoyment, purpose and confidence in a wide range of contexts. Girls are taught the skills to speak with confidence in a variety of formal and informal situations from morning news to public speaking, and to listen to and consider the viewpoints of others.

In reading we endeavour to individualise the teaching, so small focus groups and constant monitoring of progress are the keys.

In writing, the girls are given opportunities to draft and publish a variety of forms such as reports, narrative, explanation, poetry and recounts. We offer Prep parents a literacy training program to enhance their understanding of this wonderful and complex evolution of skills.


Our Mathematics program aims to ensure that students develop confidence in being able to investigate, represent and interpret mathematical situations in their lives. The mathematics curriculum addresses number and algebra, measurement and geometry, and statistics and probability.

Students work towards the following goals in Mathematics:

  • the acquisition of mathematical skills and knowledge so that girls can deal confidently and competently with daily life
  • an awareness of the fundamental importance of Mathematics to the functioning of society
  • the use of technology to support the learning of Mathematics.

Individual Differences

In catering for individual needs beyond the classroom in English and Maths, classroom teachers are supported by the Individual Differences teachers who work with them to help support an enrich girls who are clearly performing at different levels. They work with small groups of girls and individuals to target learning needs and strengths.

Integrated Studies

There is so much to learn and so many ways in which to learn. All classes in Junior School use an Inquiry Learning approach to make connections between many curriculum areas including Science, Health and Studies of Society. Thinking Skills can be taught and learned and they are incorporated into classes and subjects.

The Integrated Curriculum develops skills and understandings in Science, Digital Technologies, Humanities and Social Sciences and Health. Integrated units of work are designed to help students learn about:

  • themselves and being part of a society
  • ways people interact with each other and their environments over time
  • cultures other than their own
  • ways people use science and technology to explore and improve our world

Specialist classes

  • Physical Education offers skill development in games, weekly swimming, movement, fitness, ball skills, athletics, gymnastics, skipping and dance, with opportunities for competition from district to State levels. Outdoor Education (from Years 3–6) provides opportunities for girls to take on challenges beyond the School boundaries.
  • The Junior School Visual Arts program is a rich and varied one providing the opportunity for all students to learn through the medium of Art and develop confidence in expressing their creative ideas. 
  • The Performing Arts are seen as fundamental for the creative, social and intellectual development of the students, and the course is designed to allow the girls new ways of experiencing, developing, representing, presenting and understanding emotions, values and cultural beliefs. From Prep onwards, students are engaged in listening, creating and performing activities in the classroom as part of our core music program.
  • French lessons take an innovative approach supported by gestures, music, literature and drama. 
  • There are two components of the Junior School Library Program: Literature Appreciation, and Information and Digital Literacy skills. 
  • RAVE: Religious Education is complemented by the teaching of mindfulness, stillness and humanitarian values in the classroom throughout the year. Respect for diversity is modelled at every level.
  • Science. Emphasis is placed on hands-on Science which enables students to question, hypothesise, suggest consequences, compare, gather and record data, observe and make decisions. Students are introduced to coding from Prep, and use skills from making stop-motion animated movies to programming technologies.