At Roslyn School we are always seeking to ensure that we provide quality teaching and learning experiences that help your tamariki reach their potential and feel successful as learners.

We have five key approaches that form the basis for how we design learning across all of our kura, from Year 0 through to Year 8.

At Roslyn School, we promote a safe, inclusive and positive environment where we are all valued and value each other. We all share the same expectations, goals, beliefs and build a strong, vibrant culture.   

We have had a focus on wellbeing for several years, initiated through our work as part of the Palmerston North East Kāhui Ako.  

As a staff, we are dedicated to ensuring that all our learning experiences and programmes promote the wellbeing of our ākonga, and we seek to provide extra support individual students, and their whānau, when they need it.  

We use the Te Whare Tapa Whā model, alongside our school ngā uaratanga (values), with both our ākonga and kaiako, to help us consider all aspects of our wellbeing and how we can support ourselves and each other to develop a positive hauora and sense of wellbeing.

To specifically support Taha Tinana (physical wellbeing), we have our Kai Time - Breakfast Club available before school to provide breakfast for any tamariki that need it.  We are also part of the Ka Ora Ka Ako Healthy School Free Lunch programme, so that we can help our make sure our ākonga are well fed.

To specifically support Taha Hinengaro (emotional wellbeing) and Taha Whānau (social wellbeing), we draw on health and wellbeing programmes such as Life Education, Kia Kaha and Navigating the Journey to empower our students with the knowledge and skills to take care of their emotional wellbeing and have positive relationships with others.  We also have a counsellor onsite two days a week.

Finally, we have our own wellbeing team, who regularly provide opportunities to celebrate our learners and our staff.

Here at Roslyn School we take a structured literacy approach to teaching literacy, especially with reading and writing.

A Definition…

A Structured Literacy approach is an evidence-based approach: it emphasizes teaching all important components of literacy through an explicit, cumulative, systematic and diagnostic approach. These components include both core foundational word recognition skills (e.g., phonological awareness, decoding, spelling) and language comprehension skills, including with oral language.  

It does this with the intention of developing accurate and fluent reading and spelling, and accurate, fluent, and creative writing.

To enable teaching to be systematic, cumulative and diagnostic, a clear scope and sequence is used so that learning is targeted to learner needs.

Teaching with a Structured Literacy Approach

Our kura began its structured literacy journey in 2022, focusing on reading first.  We have now embedded this in our teaching across the school though what it looks like depends on where our students are in the scope and sequence.

Reading Scope & Sequence...

Beginning levels focus on: Approximately the first 6 months of school...

Next levels focus on:  Approximately first year of school...

Final junior levels focus on:  Approximately second year of school...

In our junior school, from our New Entrants to approximately Year 3 (depending on learner needs), this is primarily taught through a combination of explicit daily spelling teaching (including alphabetic knowledge and phonological awareness), and explicit daily reading teaching in small groups.  

The Picture Book...

To support building vocabulary knowledge, skills for reading comprehension and knowledge of different text structures, we also include explicit daily teaching using picture books.  This is important as our decodable texts are focused on supporting students in decoding, word recognition and fluency - so they do not expose ākonga to the rich vocabulary and variety in text structures and complexity found in other texts such as high quality picture books.

In our senior school, from approximately Year 4 upwards (depending on learner needs), the emphasis on learning shifts.  

At this point our students should have all of the necessary skills to support them to decode accurately, recognise words quickly and read with increasing fluency.  As such, daily explicit reading teaching comprises a guided reading approach, supporting students mainly with reading comprehension and continuing to build fluency.  

However, all of these students continue to be supported by our structured literacy approach through daily explicit teaching of spelling using our scope and sequence, which is focused on more complex vowel spelling patterns (e.g. long a can be spelt as 'ai', 'ay', 'eigh', 'ey' etc.), as well important knowledge of syllables, morphology and etymology.  

Teaching Writing through a Structured Literacy Approach...

Developing writing using a structured literacy approach is our primary focus in 2024.

We are in the early days of building teacher capability and understanding so that we can create a clear scope and sequence for explicit teaching of writing this year.

However, we are already embracing the simple view of writing to help us ensure we are designing writing programmes that best support our students to be successful writers.  

 To support transcription skills, all our students have explicit daily teaching and practice in handwriting until they are able to form letters automatically and with good pace.  As previously mentioned, all of our students also have explicit daily teaching and learning in spelling, further supporting their transcription skills.

To support text generation and executive function, all of our students also have explicit daily teaching and learning in writing - focusing on both technical skills such as how to form sentences, how to plan writing and how to review our writing, as well as how to develop ideas and make our writing interesting and engaging.   Just as we do in reading, we use an I Do - We Do - You Do approach to help consolidate learning:

At Roslyn School we recognise the importance of providing high quality teaching and learning experiences in mathematics to ensure our students progress, and that they feel motivated and successful in mathematics.

To improve student achievement, we identified the need for a consistent and well-structured approach to designing effective programmes in mathematics across the school.  We have drawn on key features of the 'Just in Time' Mathematics approach from 'The Learner First' to help provide increasing coverage of key mathematical concepts across all strands, as well as the five Mathematical Proficiencies, more regularly to build understanding and retention, and strategically revisit areas of need.  

Explicit daily teaching of mathematics is integral to our curriculum, and across the school, teaching and learning is targeted and includes:

Rarangahia ngā Whenu is our school's integrated curriculum approach.

An integrated curriculum approach is a means of teaching across the curriculum by focusing on a key concept for learning that naturally draws on the need to build knowledge and skills from several different learning areas.

At Roslyn School, Rarangahia Ngā Whenu

The diagram below represents the Roslyn approach to integrated curriculum.  

A core component of Rarangahia ngā Whenu (RNW) is the 'Big Task'.

This is a task that asks our students to draw on what they have learnt and use it to inquire further into learning or solve a problem related to it.

In our senior school, our ākonga will typically work on a RNW unit across a term.  It will begin with a provocation or problem - something to hook them into the learning that encompasses the key concept and the big idea for their learning.  They will then spend several weeks building their knowledge of the concept and context in different ways.  

This culminates in a big task where our senior students will then have the opportunity to inquire further into a part of what they've learnt and/or design a solution to a problem.  

In our junior school, the 'Big Task' component looks slightly different.  These are often smaller and completed directly after exploring a specific learning intention.  In effect, they are a series of 'mini big-tasks' as we recognise that our younger learners find it more difficult to recall their learning over longer periods of time such as a whole term.  The more regular, smaller 'Big Tasks' provide opportunity for them to apply their learning more regularly and in smaller chunks.

However, integral to the completing the big task, is our inquiry and design process - supported by explicit teaching and guided practice.   Through this, our tamariki learn to identify a problem or question, investigate it, plan an action or solution, create it, test it and then see how they can improve it - all with increasing complexity and independence as they move through the school.

Roslyn School has a rich and diverse community of students, and we value all that they bring to enrich our hapori.

We seek to be culturally responsive in all that we do, placing emphasis not only on providing opportunities to include cultural knowledge and experiences in our learning programmes, but also in ensuring that teacher practice is responsive to the varied needs and cultures of our learners.

As a member of the Palmerston North East Kāhui Ako, we are committed to continuing to build culturally responsive best practice throughout our kura.  We have a passionate and devoted Whanaungatanga team, drawing on kaiako, teacher aides, board members, students and whānau in our kura community to continue this mahi as we aspire to see all of our learners feeling mana in themselves and successful as learners.