The English Key Learning Area is an area of study that is central to the learning and development of students and is the mandatory subject in the Stage 6 curriculum. The importance of English in the curriculum is a recognition of its role as the national language and increasingly as the language of international communication. Proficiency in English enables students to take their place as confident, articulate communicators, critical and imaginative thinkers and active participants in society.
English involves the study and use of language in its various textual forms, encompassing written, spoken and visual texts of varying complexity, including the language systems of English through which meaning is conveyed, interpreted and reflected.
The study of English enables students to recognise and use a diversity of approaches and texts to meet the growing array of literacy demands, including social, aesthetic and cultural literacy. This study is designed to promote a sound knowledge of the structure and function of the English language and to develop effective English communication skills. The English Stage 4, 5 and 6 courses develop in students an understanding of literary expression and nurture an appreciation of aesthetic values. Through reading, writing, listening, speaking, viewing and representing students are encouraged to adopt a critical approach to all texts and to distinguish the qualities of texts. Students also develop English language skills to support their study at Stage 6 and beyond.
The study of English enables students to come to understand the complexity of meaning, to respond to texts according to their form, content, purpose and audience, and to appreciate the personal, vocational, social, historical, cultural and workplace contexts that produce and value them. Students reflect on their reading and learning and understand that these processes are shaped by the contexts in which they respond to and compose texts.
Through responding to and composing texts, students learn about the power, value and art of the English language for communication, knowledge and pleasure. They engage with and explore texts that include the literature of past and contemporary societies. By composing and responding with imagination, feeling, logic and conviction, students develop understanding of themselves. and of human experience and culture. They develop clear and precise skills in speaking, listening, reading, writing, viewing and representing, and knowledge and understanding of language forms and features and structures of texts.
In their study of English, students develop their critical and imaginative faculties and broaden their cultural understanding. They examine the contexts of language usage to understand how meaning is shaped by a variety of social factors. As students’ command of English grows, they are able to question, assess, challenge and reformulate information and use creative and analytical language to clarify and solve problems. They become imaginative and confident users of information and communication technologies, understanding their impact on society. These skills allow them to develop their control of language in ways that will help them in lifelong learning, in their careers and in life.
The study of English enables students to make sense of, and to enrich their lives in personal, social and professional situations and to deal effectively with change. Students develop a strong sense of themselves as autonomous, reflective and creative learners. The English Stage 6 syllabus is designed to develop in students the faculty to perceive and understand their world from a variety of perspectives, and it enables them to appreciate the richness of Australia’s cultural diversity.
English Courses at Mt St Patrick College are designed to develop enjoyment of English and an appreciation of its values and role in learning.