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Junior school

Darling Point Special School is structured around the three learning phases to maximise learning opportunities for students and to promote teaching that reflects evidence-based research about the ways that children of different ages learn best. The early year’s curriculum offers a carefully crafted meld of the Australian curriculum, the early years framework and the Darling Point Special School functional curriculum plan. The priorities relate to enhancing on task and interpersonal behaviours so that the young children are best equipped to engage profitably in the full range of learning experiences in an ongoing way and so that all students demonstrate generalised instructional control. Learning priorities relate to communication, social skills, hydrotherapy, perceptual motor and mobility skills, literacy and numeracy, adaptive and information technologies, and an increasing repertoire of fun and play skills. Young children at Darling Point Special School also engage with a developmental visual arts program, science lessons, and a range of live arts council and other performances. The key components of the school’s generic multi-element plan – tolerating ‘no’, communicating ‘no’, making and communicating an informed choice, developing an increasing range of fun skills – guide teaching and learning in this phase and all others.

Teaching in the early years, as in all learning phases at Darling Point Special School, recognises the importance of multi-modal communication. Auslan is incorporated in all classes and Auslan language mentors and educational interpreters are recruited to support students whose primary mode of communication is Auslan.