Our School's aim is to develop independent learners
Thankfully, teaching is no longer centred around assisting students to remember and repeat, but rather to locate, apply and synthesise information and knowledge. Our School's aim is to develop independent, reflective and globally-aware, life-long learners.
We are committed to the complete education of boys and girls in the junior primary years (preparatory to Year 2) where students benefit from a co-educational environment. From Year 3, our girls learn in an environment that specialises in the education of girls.
The School is dedicated to the establishment and mastery of foundation skills in literacy and numeracy. As students develop, they are increasingly encouraged to take risks in their learning, identify with strong role models and engage in higher-order thinking.
Opportunities at CGGS
The confidence to develop a central idea
The Primary Years Programme (PYP) Exhibition is an integral part of our teaching and learning program here in the Junior School. The Exhibition provides Year 6 students with an opportunity to take action and demonstrate the conceptual understandings, skills, knowledge and attitudes they have developed throughout their primary school years.
In 2013, students spent nearly two months inquiring into a conceptual idea they developed as a year level. This central idea was: 'Humankind benefits when responsibility is taken to meet human rights'. The central idea provided the context from which students chose an issue they cared deeply for to explore. Students recorded and reflected on their learning in journals however for the Exhibition itself, each student chose one mode of presentation only. Some created a movie, a painting, a book, an original song and many other inspired creations.
While quality presentations are important, on exhibition day what matters most is that the students are confident in their ability to articulate their increased knowledge and understandings; demonstrate the skills and attitudes they have acquired and developed throughout the process; and reflected and learnt more about themselves as learners.
Producing spirited leaders
We challenge our students to see leadership as more than just a badge of honour. To be a great leader, a person must serve others with insight, humility and sensitivity. By encouraging and nurturing leadership qualities in this way we help students to become strong, independent people, who can make the most of opportunities and be a force for good.
The School expects its student leaders to reflect on their roles in depth and to inspire and empower others to see leadership in this way.
There is much we can do within the School to nurture leadership qualities and to build on emerging leadership skills. When students have a chance to help coach younger teams, when they lead choirs or sections of the orchestra, when older students direct drama productions for younger students, they benefit from an opportunity to practice leadership.
“Every week I have the privilege of meeting at least twice with the student leaders in the Junior School. One meeting is with the Student Representative Council, comprising the Head Girl and Deputy Head Girl and the elected Class Captains in each class from Years 3 to 6. At these meetings the Class Captains bring ideas and concerns from their classes to be discussed for problems to be resolved. These students are brimming with ideas and opinions on how they can add value, interest and awareness within the Junior school" – Heather Ablett, Head of Junior School.
Outdoor education – a critical part of our vision
The Outdoor Education Program commences in Year 1 with 'camp day' based at the local Scout Hall and facilities. It is a sequential program that in Year 2 sees students involved in activities at a camping centre near Canberra, before returning to the School for a sleepover.
From Year 3, students attend traditional camps at various centres that provide progressively more challenging activities, finishing with a four day (three nights) camp in Year 6.
Camps provide students with a range of benefits-increased self-confidence and resilience, a greater resolve to overcome challenges, reconnection with nature and the development of an awareness of the Australian bush skills such as navigation, survival, outdoor living and teamwork.
Camps are not simply a recreational add-on for CGGS, they are a critical part of our vision to develop confident, competent young women who are prepared to face challenges in life and who understand the importance of teams and leadership in today's world.
Taking a balanced approach
The co-curricular program at CGGS is an integral part of the educational experience and includes all activities that support, enhance or complement the formal academic curriculum. It is based on the philosophy that personal growth occurs when students and staff are able to access a broad range of experiences. We believe success in future studies, employment and life itself are more likely for those who have a balanced approach to work and social commitments, and who have developed their capacity to work effectively with others.
Our program offers each student the opportunity to explore and cultivate their passions and interests, to be inspired to discover their own potential, to showcase their talents and develop leadership, self-confidence and pride. Our program offers each teacher, parent and volunteer the opportunity to build relationships, to enhance connectedness with our students and to further develop their own personal and professional journey.