The Senior Years Learning Model
“The Masterclasses have been beneficial in their ability to provide me time to choose between the types of work I wish to prioritise and complete.” (Year 11 Student)
At St Catherine’s we are committed to adapting our model of learning and educational platform in a way that meets the needs of our students in this rapidly changing world. Teaching methods need to evolve to keep up with these changing times and incorporate integrated technologies into the learning model. Our role as educators is to equip the students with the learning and skills they will need post school. During our 2020 Learn@Home program, students expressed a need for greater independence and flexibility to learn at their own pace and revisit a recorded online class or lecture. Through the challenge of COVID, we saw an opportunity to change our mode of delivery and create greater student agency.
Our central objective was to embrace the benefits of both face-to-face teaching and an online delivery for students. This led to the introduction of the Senior Years Learning Model in Years 10 and 11 in 2021. This hybrid learning model embraces both face-to-face learning and asynchronous Independent Learning Tutorials (ILTs). In all subjects, one period a fortnight is a ‘Flexi-Tute’ in the form of an online Masterclass lecture or tutorial, as well as support from teachers if needed.
Hybrid learning breaks down the traditional walls of teaching, ones that don’t work for all students and allows teachers to tailor the learning experience for each student. It offers flexible time frames that can be personalised for each student, offering them the ability to learn at their own pace. Most importantly, this model provides student agency by offering students choice, self-direction, independence and ownership in their learning.
What do the Masterclasses and Tutorials look like?
The Masterclass is varied in their delivery across the subjects. They may focus on the concepts, content or skills that are relevant to the subject. They require students to view, listen and engage with a range of multimedia and independent study.
Some examples of Masterclasses and Tutorials are given below.
English: lectures on historical context and views and values on texts as well as tutorials on the various essay types.
Maths: effective and efficient strategies to solve application problems and consolidate skills by revisiting problem-solving strategies.
Science: problem solving, watching a Prac and responding to analysis questions plus extension of a concept
LOTE: consolidating key language skills such as grammar, listening, script acquisition, or how to tackle reading texts and speaking skills.
Humanities: examining links to further reading and visual stimulus materials to expand on thinking, instructions and purpose (for individual or group work)
Arts: creating videos on how to cut a lino print, construct a stage set model, software skills plus short vignettes on visual diary annotations
Health & PE: data collection through the analysis of game footage, to understand game strategies and tactics.
The Independent Learning Tutorials will be consistently evaluated using student surveys and data which will inform any changes to ensure that we are delivering the best learning opportunities for our students. I thank the Year 10 and 11 teachers who have successfully navigated the transition to this model and their work in producing exceptional Masterclasses and tutorials for students. I am excited about the opportunities of the Senior Years Learning Model in developing independence and a self-paced mode of learning that the students will require in their Tertiary studies and future careers.