Multi-age Learning

At St Joseph’s we have embraced multi-age learning as a philosophy of education for many years.  The term ’multi-age’ in its simplest form refers to a class comprised of children of different ages intentionally grouped for learning.

The Australian Curriculum has been written to assist multi-age learning so that children over two years gain a deeper understanding of each learning concept.  

It is not a “composite” class where students in each grade study a different curriculum.  The multi-age classroom is a place where all students participate in the same units at their own level.  Multi-age is a deliberate structure in which children of different ages are grouped together.  The teacher, as facilitator, uses a variety of instructional strategies to focus on the individual needs of the learner.

The multi-age classroom caters for: independence in learning, interdependence in learning, cross-age relationships, collaborative learning, academic learning and social needs of children.  The multi-age classroom is a supportive environment in which diversity is celebrated, effective social skills are developed, where parents are involved, and learners respect the thoughts, experiences and interests of others.

In a multi-age classroom, continuous progress is encouraged and works well because every child is unique and has an individual pattern and timing for growth.  Such a classroom provides opportunities for children to build progressively on their developing skill and knowledge base as they work toward achieving their learning goals.

The multi-age classroom provides children with greater opportunities for a wider range of relationships and social experiences and therefore promotes development of their social skills and cooperative behaviour.  The varied levels of social and emotional development found among children of different ages means they can be both supported by and supportive of one another.

Because of the many desirable social and learning experiences and flexibility that this kind of classroom organisation affords, we utilise this opportunity to provide a range of multi-age classrooms at St Joseph’s.