Learning & Teaching

​​​Educational Context

The overarch​in​g goal for learning in Brisbane Catholic Education schools is to empower learners of all ages to shape and enrich our changing world, by living the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  All phases of schooling are informed through Brisbane Catholic Education's Learning & Te​aching Framework (see below); Religion Curriculum; Queensland Curriculum & Assessment ​Authority publications; the Australian Curriculum and government regulatory compliance requirements.


The Religion Curriculum P-12 and materials are the source for all planning of Religious Education in Brisbane Catholic Education Schools. 

The Australian Curriculum will be the source of all curriculum planning, assessment and reporting for all Learning Areas covered by the Australian Curric​ulum. 

The Alice Spr​ings Education Declaration identifies the important role education plays in building a democratic, equitable and just society.  

Learning and Teaching Within the School Community

As Catholic educators we have a tradition and vision built on our values and beliefs. These values and beliefs are foundational to our action and engagement in learning and teaching with our students, parents and colleagues.

Through Brisbane Catholic Education's vision as a faith-filled learning community creating a better future. We believe:

  • Every learner is created in the image and likeness of God and inspired by the spirit, responds with passion and creativity to life.
  • Every learner seeks to find meaning in life and learning and in the Catholic Christian Tradition we find meaning in the person and teachings of Jesus to grow as pilgrim people.
  • Every learner is a lifelong learner, with a desire to search for truth and do what is right; accountable for choices and responsible for actions.
  • Every learner is in some respect, like all others, like some others, like no other and we respond creatively, flexibly and with a futures orientation to ensure dignity and justice for all.
  • Every learner can achieve success in life and learning where diversity is valued and shared wisdom contributes to decision-making that enriches and enlivens our world.
  • Every learner brings to the learning experience their own richly diverse life journey to contribute to a community in communion, empowered by the Spirit to be at the service of others.

Key messages:

​1.  There are three core assertions that underpin the way in which learning and teaching are planned, organised and enacted in our schools:

    • The focus is on the whole person
    • Learning and living are inextricably linked
    • Learning and teaching prepares students for global responsibilities.

​​2.  ​​Schools intentionally develop their curriculum on the foundations of a Catholic theology and philosophy of curriculum. These are described as:

    • Anthropology - a Catholic understanding of the human person
    • Epistemology - nature and act of knowledge and knowing
    • Cosmology - how we understand our place in the universe and live within the integrity of creation
    • Catholic Christian Story and Tradition within the mission of the church to promote the reign of God.


Learning and teaching in the St. Joseph's community, embraces the spirit of The Good Samaritan Sisters as expressed throu​gh the vision and mission statement, and engages the aspirations of the residential community in which the school is situated. 

St. Joseph's Catholic Primary School is committed to planning and providing a high quality, 21st century Catholic education; an education focused on the development of the human person created whole in the image and likeness of God, bringing faith, life and culture into our school life.  Our dedicated and professional staff deliver personalised and authentic learning opportunities for all students.  St. Joseph's staff want every child to achieve a high standard of learning and be given the opportunity to celebrate their success and talents.

Teachers at St. Joseph's plan collaboratively with the Primary Learning Leader, Learning Support Teacher and BCE Curriculum Consultants using the Learning and Teaching Cycle and Model of Pedagogy to create unique, meaningful and challenging learning for our learners.

Expectations of Whole School Planning

St. Joseph's curriculum outlines how it provides “the entitlement of each student to knowledge, understanding and skills that provide a foundation for successful and lifelong learning and participation in the Australian community." (Shape of the Australian Curriculum, v3.0)

Teachers will plan, teach, assess and report using the Australian Curriculum for: -

  • English, Maths, Science and HASS.
  • The Arts (Dance, Drama, Music, Media & Visual Arts) 
  • Health & Physical Education
  • Technologies

Specialist lessons in Chinese, Physical Education and Library are planned from the Australian Curriculum.

Furthermore, St. Joseph's is providing professional development for teachers to continue to build teacher capacity in effective and precision pedagogy to ensure all students are learning and achieving.

Students and Community 

The school's curriculum is responsive to the needs and aspirations of the students and community and provides viable pathways and transitions for all students. Whole school curriculum planning identifies and articulates: 

  • Who our students and community are and how these influence and inform the development of the school's curriculum;

Beliefs and values of our Learning and Teaching Framework and how these are enacted within our school curriculum. 

Quali​ty Teaching 

The school's curriculum outlines whole school approaches to align learning and teaching across the curriculu​m; these approaches are developed, communicated, professionally supported and reviewed. Whole school curriculum planning identifies and articulates: 

  • Whole school pedagogies that ensure continuity of learning for all students across the curriculum and within learning areas;
  • The school's principles and guidelines for effective assessment practices within and across learning areas;
  • Use of Data Walls and Review and Response Meetings
  • Processes to ensure consistency of teachers' judgements about student achievement within and beyond the school;
  • Processes for reporting student progress, achievement and development to students, parents, caregivers and the community.

Monitoring and Evaluation 

The school's curriculum outlines whole school planning for all students that is informed by student data and monitors student achievement and development to ensure high expectations for all students. Whole school curriculum planning identifies and articulates: 

  • Processes for how the school monitors, reflects on and evaluates student achievement and development;
  • How this data informs decision making for whole school, year level, class and individual planning; 
  • Promoting Professional Learning: Using the Inquiry and Knowledge Building Cycle  
  • Using assessment data for improving teacher practice;
  • Using student assessment for professional learning: Focussing on students' outcomes to identify teachers' needs; 
  • Using student assessment for teacher professional learning; 
  • Elements of whole school planning. 

Early Years Pedagogy (Prep to Year 3)

  • Enable children to use their skills and understandings as capable learners;
  • Enable children to have ownership of learning (locus of control/agency);
  • Provide opportunities for choice, play-based learning;
  • Provide opportunities for learning associated with the factors for success in schooling; these factors are identified as social and emotional competence, health and wellbeing, language;  development and communication, cognitive development and approach to learning.

Teachers need to advocate for the various types of play by providing opportunities for families and colleagues to dialogue and make connections between their priorities, understandings and values and the explicit learning that occurs when play is skilfully and deliberately scaffolded.  


Principles of Early Years Learning

  • Children are capable and confident and have been learning since birth.
  • Children build deep understandings when they learn through all senses and are offered choice in their learning experiences.
  • Children learn best through interactions, active exploration and experimentation, and by representing their learning through a variety of modes.
  • Children's positive dispositions to learning, and to themselves as learners, are essential for success in school and beyond.
  • Children learn best in environments where there are supportive relationships among all partners in the learning community.
  • Early childhood programs are most effective when they recognise, value and build upon the cultural and social experiences of children.
  • Building continuity of learning as children move to and through school provides foundations for their future success.
  • Assessment for young children is an integral part of learning-teaching process and is not a separate activity.

Contexts for Learning in the Early Years

  • Play 
  • Real life situations
  • Investigations
  • Routines and transitions
  • Focussed learning and teaching

Middle Years Learning (Years 4 to 6)

The child at this stage of development is undergoing a period of transition. They seek greater independence as they try to 'branch out' yet require structure and modelling and set expectations to achieve this over time. 

Through this transition the movement from concrete to abstract thinking and change in friendship concepts and relationships marks a formative time.

Principles for Middle Years Learning (Years 4 - 6) 

C​hildren are curious, enthusiastic, easily motivated and distracted, want to please, are reward driven and excited about learning new things and learning how “I" learn;

Children discover and define friendship groups more amid a less tactful disposition, but some thrive on individual responsibility.

Class Groupings 

Students in Prep to Year 6 are currently grouped in Class Groupings as follows: ​

  • Prep
  • Year 1/2  
  • Year 3/4 
  • Year 5/​6 ​