Barker believes that all students deserve to enjoy an enriched curriculum experience.
In discussions about education, the terms enrichment and extension are frequently used interchangeably to mean programs for the ablest learners. At Barker, we take a different view. We believe that all students deserve an enriched curriculum experience and, therefore, academic enrichment programs at Barker are available to and accessible by ALL students.
In most cases, academic enrichment is delivered through the subject departments and their programs of study. Learning is enriched through the many excursions and guest speakers that punctuate the academic programs. Students get to experience a subject ‘in the field’ and can apply their classroom learning to new environments. Learners can listen to expert visitors and ask questions that have been prompted by the day-to-day experiences in the classroom.
In addition to subject-based enrichment, Barker students have access to other programs that promote academic development. For example, students in Years 7 and 9 participate in the Hearts and Minds program to introduce them to ideas about philosophy, thinking structures and methods of persuasion.
Academic Enrichment through Inquiry
In addition to expert subject teaching, Middle School students also experience a program of transdisciplinary inquiry units to further enrich the curriculum. Units are designed around shared content and concepts, allowing students to make important connections across subjects that are not always obvious when subjects are taught in isolation. These units will build upon the inquiry focus in the Junior School and support the transition to the more subject-focused curriculum that is a feature of learning from Years 7-12.
Academic Enrichment in the Senior School
Senior School students access a range of programs that are designed to enrich learning. In Year 10, students experience eTime as part of their timetable. These sessions provide academic enrichment by promoting self-regulation, goal-setting, and perseverance in learning. Senior school learning is further supported by O Week for Year 11 students and the Focus Day program in Year 12. Year 11 students attend an HSC Retreat to give the best possible start for students commencing their HSC courses.