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Our Learning

Bethany Catholic Primary School Werribee

At Bethany, we believe that ALL students can learn and flourish in an environment that supports authentic relationships. We use the Science of Learning as evidence based practice to develop and improve students’ learning. Our rigorous curriculum endeavours to equip our students with the knowledge and skills that will enable them to become lifelong learners. The students are engaged, focused and happy as rich learning sequences are planned and designed to meet the learning needs of every student. Quality teaching and learning is everything we do at Bethany. 


We believe:

  •  in consistent practices that include a deep understanding of the Victorian Curriculum domains using a Prep -6 Scope and Sequence 

  • in a schoolwide instructional model of Explicit Direct Instruction (EDI)  of I Do, We Do, You Do model  to introduce new concepts ensuring all students achieve success

  • newly acquired knowledge is moved into the students’ long term memory by conducting ‘Daily Reviews’ which is based on the concept of spaced and interleaved practice

  • differentiated learning fosters the individual needs of each child

  • in building the capacity of students to be effective communicators, thinkers, collaborators and researchers

  • learning and teaching is explicit and scaffolded to establish learning intentions, success criteria and feedback, to ensure success for all students

  • Students are empowered to have a strong voice in the learning process and to take risks in a safe environment



At Bethany Catholic Primary School we understand how vital English skills are, to support all learning. Our explicit directional instruction focuses on developing essential literacy skills, knowledge of reading and writing, and building a love of learning, language, and literature. We use evidence-based methods related to the Science of Learning and explicitly the Science of Reading  to ensure all students succeed and thrive in this area.


Explicit and systematic teaching of fundamental knowledge and skills is the pillar of our approach at Bethany to provide the best possible environment for all students to develop the ability to read, write and understand the rules that underpin the English language.


Reading is made of six key areas:

1.    Phonological Awareness

2.   Phonics

3.   Oral Language

4.   Fluency

5.   Vocabulary

6.   Comprehension


We follow a developmentally appropriate teaching sequence using a structured literacy approach, emphasising highly explicit and systematic teaching of all components of Literacy. These include Foundational skills through to higher order thinking skills and cover the following:

  • Phonemes

  • Letter-sound relationships

  • Syllable patterns

  • Morphemes

  • Vocabulary

  • Sentence structure

  • Paragraph structure

  • Text structure


Through whole school structures including Daily Reviews and Phonemic Awareness, as well as structured intervention and extension programs, we aim for all students to have success and enjoyment in Literacy learning. 



Fluency is defined as the ability to read with speed, accuracy, and proper expression. In order to understand what they read, children must be able to read fluently whether they are reading aloud or silently. When reading aloud, fluent readers read in phrases and add intonation appropriately. Their reading is smooth and has expression.



Spelling activities involve students spelling, blending and segmenting words. Students are also explicitly taught the 6 syllable types and morphology (prefixes, suffixes) and the spelling rules that govern them. High frequency words (learned words) are included in the daily English structure.



Vocabulary is one of the six major components of reading and is linked to academic success. Vocabulary instruction provides essential background knowledge for reading and writing. If students are taught the meaning of words that they don’t know from the text, they have a better chance of comprehending what has been read.


Across all of our year levels, we use rich content material, both fiction and non-fiction, to develop units of work, relating to the same topic. We use The Writing Revolution method to enable students to master the skills that are essential to become competent writers. It is these skills that also equip students to become more proficient readers, to communicate more effectively in writing and speaking and evaluate their thinking.

Students need explicit instruction in writing, beginning in the early grades.  Sentences are the building blocks of all writing.  When embedded in the content of the curriculum, writing instruction is a powerful teaching tool.  The content of the curriculum drives the rigour of the writing activities.  Grammar is best taught in the context of student writing.  The two most important phases of the writing process are planning and revising.



At Bethany, we believe that Mathematics and problem solving skills are an integral part of everyday life. The mathematics program at Bethany is designed using student data from a variety of assessments to achieve targeted and authentic learning. 

Through our Mathematical learning we aim for our students to:

  • develop an appreciation and curiosity of mathematics

  • demonstrate a range of skills and strategies to become mathematical problem solvers

  • build speed and accuracy in computational skills consistent with their age and stages of development

  • acquire the mathematical knowledge, ways of thinking and confidence to apply mathematics in real and abstract situations such as Maths Olympiad

This is done through regular counting, the use of hands-on materials, explicit instruction, number talks, teaching of mental computation strategies and opportunities to build skills through games and real-world contexts. 


We aim to grow each student's mathematical understanding so they can reach their full potential.



At Bethany we believe in a student centred pedagogy where our instruction is shaped by the interests and wonderings of our students. We provide a safe and nurturing environment that enables each child to thrive, fostering their innate curiosity about the world around them.


Our Inquiry units are collaboratively planned, designed and enacted in alignment with the F-10 Victorian Curriculum:

  • History

  • Geography

  • Science

  • Civics and Citizenship

  • Economics and Business

  • Critical and Creative Thinking

  • Ethical and Intercultural Capabilities

  • Design and Digital Technologies


Within a two year Inquiry cycle students investigate and explore the following 6 throughlines or ‘big ideas’:

  • Environment

  • Innovation

  • Exploration

  • Story

  • Community

  • Wellbeing


An Inquiry unit typically begins with an immersive experience which can include, incursions, excursions or a rich experience provided at school. These experiences are designed to spark learner interest, excite learners about the upcoming inquiry and to generate questions and wonderings and discover what they will learn about. Students work through three stages of an Inquiry unit.


Building Stage 

  • Activate student’s prior knowledge and spark curiosity

  • Builds a strong foundation of knowledge and understanding

  • Explicitly teach skills and strategies students will apply independently later in the unit

Investigating Stage

  • Enable student choice and voice

  • Engage in more personal investigation determined by student needs, interests or questions

  • Develop deep understandings about big concepts

  • Practise and apply inquiry skills in more independent inquiries


Applying Stage

  • Apply understandings and skills in real life contexts

  • Provide opportunities for students to act on their learning in an authentic way



As participants in the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program, our students discover the pleasures of hands-on food education, through regular classes in a productive vegetable garden and a Community Kitchen classroom space.


Students learn to maintain a garden according to organic principles, and to grow and harvest a wide variety of vegetables and fruits.  We have a large, productive vegetable garden within the school grounds to provide edible produce for the Community Kitchen. The care of the garden teaches students about the natural world, its wonders and beauty and how to cultivate and care for it.


In our Community Kitchen, students prepare delicious dishes from the seasonal produce they’ve grown. The finished meal is arranged with pride and care on tables set with flowers from the garden. The shared meal is a time for students and  teachers to enjoy the fruits of their labour, as well as each other’s company and conversation.


Experiences in the kitchen and garden classes support and extend learning across subjects such as English, Mathematics, Science and History.  Students learn to calculate, measure, analyse and articulate their experiences in a real-life context as they experience the flavours from other countries.



At Bethany we are conscious of our impact on the earth and have established a school wide paper recycling program in order to reduce our waste. This program is maintained by our senior students and highlights sustainable practices.



At Bethany students have the opportunity to develop digital literacy skills and enhance their learning across all curriculum areas on a daily basis. The Digital Technologies curriculum empowers students to expand their creativity and problem solving skills through the development of digital solutions and application of information systems. 

Students are encouraged to use technology to create innovative solutions for a sustainable future through the STEAM process.


Students at Bethany are well resourced with a range of hardware to enhance learning. Chromebooks and iPads are used across our school.


Students in Years Prep - 2 have access to 1:1 iPads and in Years 3-6 students have access to 1:1 Chromebooks which are used extensively throughout the day.


Students in Years 3-6 use G-Suite for Education as an e-learning tool. G- Suite for Education is a cloud based set of tools that allows us to create and collaborate from school or home on any device that is connected to the web.


At Bethany, all students from Prep to Year 6 participate in weekly Digital Technology lessons. Students explore a range of devices including coding using Scratch Jr, Scratch, Blockly and robotics using Makey Makey, Spheros, Lego, Edisons, Beebots and BlueBots, Green screen etc.  Students develop skills such as coding, typing, film making, photography, electronics and animation. 


We take a cross curricular approach, embedding digital technologies into the classrooms and curriculum, exploring new ways to enable students to create digital solutions to 

everyday problems.


Teachers and students work with Apple Educator coach Phil Cristofaro to build their capacity and develop skills using the features of iPads to enhance their learning.


Cyber Safety and the responsible use of technology is at the forefront of how we interact with Digital Technologies. Bethany is an eSmart school and students are challenged to take an active role in spreading these values across our community.

All students learn about the need for safety online and are required to return a user agreement acknowledging their consent to use technology responsibly and respectfully. Students and parents participate in webinars/information sessions run by Inform and Empower.


We aim to develop skills and understandings which will enable all students to become safe, responsible and respectful digital citizens.



At Bethany, we have implemented Teachers As Co Learners as a contemporary pedagogical approach to teaching Italian. This approach encompasses both students and teachers as learners of the Italian language. 


Learning the Italian language is led by a Language Assistant in conjunction with the classroom teacher.  Italian is embedded into everyday learning in classrooms.  Each day, fifteen minutes is dedicated to learning vocabulary and practising words and phrases previously covered, using gestures as visual cues. This approach is highly effective to increase language acquisition and ensure that Italian is used  in an authentic and meaningful way. Throughout the day, teachers and students use Italian in their daily interactions to communicate, such as greeting each other, asking questions, following commands or expressing their likes and dislikes.


Teachers and students from Prep to Year 6 have embraced this approach to language learning and Italian can be heard around the school each and every day.


Specialist Program

Bethany Werribee

At Bethany, the students are provided with five areas of specialised instruction. They include:

  • Physical Education

  • Visual Arts

  • Music

  • Digital Technologies - Robotics

  • Science


Students rotate through a 13 week cycle of each of the above  Specialist areas that are aligned with the Victorian Curriculum.


Digital Technologies - Robotics




Physical Education


Visual Arts



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Extra Curricular Activities



Whole School Masses        
Class Masses
Sacramental Programs
Family Faith nights    
Social Justice focus
Strong Parish Connections
Confirmation Retreat Day



Excursions / incursions
Maths Olympiad
Simultaneous Storytime
P-6 Camp Program
Speech Therapist



District Athletics
District Cross Country
District Swimming
School Swimming P-6
School Athletics P-6
Summer Gala day
Winter Gala day
Hooptime Basketball


The Arts

School Choir
Boite Choir (Year 4)
Visual Arts Show (biennial) 
Book Week Activities



School Captains
School Vice Captains
House Captains
House Vice Captains
Social Justice Leaders
SRC Leaders


Student Wellbeing

Pre Prep Transition ProgramsThe Resilience ProjectBethany DaySchool Athletics Day P-6Positive Behaviours for LearningSchool Counsellor


Staff Learning

At Bethany we demonstrate a commitment to continuous learning and improvement as education is continually evolving. We have had the privilege to engage in Professional Learning with various Educational Consultants that allow staff to enhance and refine their teaching pedagogy. This ongoing learning ensures teaching instruction remains relevant and aligned with current educational standards.


We are currently working in partnership with:

  • Greg Clement - The Science of Learning and The Science of Reading

  • Jane Bennett - Positive Behaviours for Learning (PBL) Coach

  • Deborah Vietri - Inquiry approaches to learning that are student driven

  • Phill Cristofaro - Apple Distinguished Educator

  • Mary Tobin - Leadership Formation


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