The study of English at Illawarra Christian School provides students with valuable opportunities to consider life issues from a Christian worldview and allows them to gain insight into a diverse range of cultural, historical and religious perspectives.
English in secondary school encourages students to improve communication with others, develop critical faculties, enjoy the richness and beauty of language, and deepen their understanding of who they are in God’s world.
Students develop their oral presentation skills in school and interschool public speaking competitions, and they refine their spelling skills in class activities that culminate in an interclass spelling bee. Each year we welcome visiting theatre companies to our school, including Bell Shakespeare and Poetry in Action.
Gifted writers learn from the best at the Sydney Writers’ Festival each year and enter their work in a range of writing competitions. Students also test their skills in the ICAS English Competition. Senior students enjoy visiting the theatre and seeing their HSC drama texts performed on stage.
Improving student literacy is a key responsibility for every teacher in every year and subject at Illawarra Christian School. English is a compulsory subject through to Year 12, and all extension levels of English are offered for HSC study.
The ability to make informed decisions and to interpret and apply mathematics in a variety of contexts is essential in preparing for life in the 21st century.
Our students develop the capacity to critically evaluate ideas and arguments that involve mathematical concepts or that are presented in mathematical form.
Each year the Mathematics faculty celebrates Pi Day across the school. We run a range of exciting pi-related activities that culminate in a whole-school lunch of meat pies with pi symbols baked into the pastry. Our students participate in a range of competitions. A select group of students from Years 7-10 are invited to complete the Mathematics Challenge, an intense assignment that requires critical and lateral thinking skills.
In secondary school students are able to study Mathematics at the level that best suits their individual strengths and needs. Year 12 students have the option to study all levels of Mathematics for their HSC.
We believe it is important to integrate the teaching and learning of mathematics into a comprehensive Christian worldview. The universe is a structured entity created by God and subject to him. Mathematical laws reflect God’s order and creativity. The study of Mathematics enables students to understand the universe as they develop age-appropriate skills.
Students explore the wonders of science in the context of the world in which they live, raising questions and solving problems using the scientific method. They are challenged to apply this process to their everyday decision making.
Students are encouraged to use science to understand how things work, while a Christian perspective on God’s world provides reason and purpose for these things. We challenge our students to consider how science might be used to sustain the environment and improve the lives of others. We show them how to be discerning with emerging technologies, and we increase their awareness of the exciting career opportunities available in science fields.
The study of science at Illawarra Christian School is founded on our understanding that God is the creator of all things, that he sustains his creation according to his purpose, and that as his image bearers we have been created to know and understand his world.
Students engage with practical laboratory work, field studies, and collaborative and independent tasks. They expand their understanding of science through excursions to ANSTO, the Powerhouse, the Museum of Disease and the UOW Innovation Campus. They also have opportunities to extend their skills by taking part in the Science and Engineering Challenge, the Illawarra Coal Science Fair, and the Science Olympiad. Biology, Physics and Chemistry are offered for study at HSC level.
Human Society and its Environment
Our HSIE classes are vibrant centres of learning. Students experience a wide range of learning opportunities through the study of Modern and Ancient History, Geography, Business Studies, Economics, Commerce and Legal Studies.
They might explore coastal management of Wollongong beaches for Geography, complete a small business loan application and source products to sell at the Wollongong Foragers Markets for Business Studies, or engage in activities on Medieval Day and visit the Australian War Memorial for History.
Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE) covers a broad range of content designed to help students understand their rapidly changing world. HSIE allows students to investigate and discover God’s world and to recognise their place within the local, national and global communities under God’s rule.
The study of HSIE develops skills that enable students to critically analyse and interpret sources of evidence in order to construct reasoned explanations, hypotheses and informed arguments. HSIE also enables students to understand, deconstruct and evaluate differing interpretations. The cognitive skills of analysis, evaluation and synthesis underpin the study of HSIE subjects and equip students with the ability to understand and evaluate the political, cultural, environmental and social events and issues that have shaped the world around them.
Technical and Applied Sciences
Through the study of Food Technology, Textiles, Timber, Photography and Digital Media, Design and Technology, or Information and Software Technology our students have the opportunity to develop, design, problem solve and think creatively and critically.
Students have a broad range of experiences in Years 7 and 8 and the opportunity to explore these further as electives in Years 9-12. The school has fostered links with local industry, community groups and universities to further enrich student experience and prepare them for the workplace.
The majesty, order and detail of our natural world is a reflection of our creative and powerful God. We find delight in designing from the resources that God has made available to us, using the technology that he has equipped our minds to develop.
Creative and Performing Arts
At Illawarra Christian School, we recognise the potential for creativity that exists within each one of our students, as God has made us in his image, gifting us with the ability to create and organise and fashion.
Through involvement with creative and performing arts, students deepen their understanding of the fullness and wonder of creation. They develop their appreciation of cultural diversity and the gifts of others.
All students in Years 7 and 8 have experience with Visual Arts and Music, and in Years 9-12 they may elect to further their study in these areas and in Drama. Secondary students have opportunities to participate in the secondary band, music ensembles, school musicals and drama performances. The HSC Major Works Evening and the Stage 5 Performing Arts Night are highlights in the year.
Languages other than English
Learning another language not only expands our capacity to understand language, it also opens our minds to the diversity of peoples, nationalities and cultures in our global community.
It gives us insights into a different world and enhances our capacity to understand other cultures, to relate to other people and to evaluate our own ways of living.
At Illawarra Christian School, all Year 7 students have a choice of studying either French or Japanese, and students may elect to further their study in Years 9 and 10. Most lessons are delivered in a supported immersive style, the emphasis being placed on equipping students with essential vocabulary. Students also undertake a general overview of the target country’s geography and culture. French elective students participate in French language speaking workshops at Alliance Française and UOW, and Japanese elective students will participate in workshops at the Japan Foundation Sydney and UOW. All language students enjoy preparing food and engaging in rich cultural experiences.
Biblical Studies assists students to acquire the knowledge and understanding essential for the development of a Christian worldview.
It aims to prepare students for informed and active Christian living in a changing world. The course seeks to give students an overview of the Bible. It maps the progressive historical revelation of the person and work of Christ through the Old and New Testaments.
It is important that Biblical Studies not be seen as merely an academic study though it does incorporate the development of skills such as interpretation, analysis, communication and research. Through Biblical Studies we hope to develop a greater understanding of the need for a personal relationship with the God of Scripture and the creator of the universe. Students are encouraged to understand the application of the Bible for life and practice.
Personal Development, Health and Physical Education
PDHPE provides for the holistic development and well-being of students. Students learn about ways of maintaining active, healthy lifestyles and improving their health status.
PDHPE is also concerned with social and scientific understandings of movement and aims to enhance the appreciation of movement in students’ lives. Students develop their knowledge of the theory that underpins this subject, and they also acquire skills and understanding through practical experience.
PDHPE is a compulsory subject for students in Years 7 to 10. It is also offered as an elective in senior school, and Physical Activities and Sport Studies (PASS) is available for study as an elective in Stage 5.
God has invested humankind with the responsibility to be stewards of his world. In order to honour God, we need to be stewards of our own bodies and to pursue healthy habits, spiritually, mentally and physically.