Academic Overview

At Darling College we pride ourselves on the fact that we are able to bring country living into the classroom. We make outdoor education part of classroom activity and we regularly undertake excursions to a variety of different venues. We offer extra tuition to those who need extra help as well as to those who need extension.

As part of preparing our students for the transition to high school we regularly expose them to external examinations. Through this process we can gage both teaching and learning at the school and it helps us to identify best practice.

Culturally Darling College participates in Eisteddfod’s and we encourage our students to be creative by writing and performing their own drama mini-productions. Service to the community is encouraged through-out the school and many of the curriculum themes are put in practice through community involvement.

GRADE 000 - R

The school will have a fully-fledged Pre-Primary unit by the end of February 2016. Students from the age of two will be able to start their schooling at Darling College. Our aftercare facility will cater for pre-primary as well as Foundation phase students. This facility will be open from 13:00 to 17:00 Monday to Friday. The office may be contacted for more information.

GRADE 1 – 6

Darling College in both the Foundation (Grades 1 to 3) and the Intermediate (Grades 4 to 6) embraces the best practises of CAPS, which we believe best serves the needs of our pupils as they face a changing world.

We place great emphasis on the acquisition of skills and an awareness of attitudes and values in all our teaching. This is reflected in the variety of teaching strategies that are used. Our aim is to equip our learners to solve problems creatively and communicate the solutions effectively.

Learners are encouraged to develop interpersonal skills and to collect, analyse, evaluate and use information efficiently.

Moreover, small classes (no more than 20) allow for meaningful interaction between teachers and learners, to ensure that they achieve to the best of their ability.

The National Curriculum serves as a guideline, but our academic programme strives to challenge our pupils in all learning areas, such as Languages, Mathematics and NaturalScience. Although each learning area has its own importance and worth, we believe that cross-curricular themes integrate the curriculum and make it more relevant.

This is particularly evident in our Information Technology lessons, where the school policy is to use the computer as an aid to teaching and learning in all areas of the curriculum.

Pupils are trained in basic MS Office skills that enable them to conduct internet research and produce documents, slide shows and spread sheets. Using MS Suite, the pupils learn research, processing and presentation skills.

Assessment is an integral part of CAPS. Pupils are assessed in many different ways (designed to fully recognise and credit different learning styles and abilities) throughout the year.

We believe that through a system of continuous evaluation, our pupils will develop an understanding that they must work to the best of their ability at everything that they do, and not only to achieve good results in tests. It must be said that past results from the ANA’s and systemic testing was amongst the highest in the district and well above the provincial and national averages.

Our reporting system gives full feedback on the various outcomes that have been achieved by learners, as well as the results of summative assessments. We regard personal and social development as extremely important, and individual comments on all aspects of the pupils are included in the report. In addition, parents are invited to meet the teachers individually each term.

GRADE 7

Grade 7, whilst still part of the primary school structure, is the beginning of the senior phase of schooling. We structure the academic program in such a way as to ensure that there is a smooth transition into senior school education.

Our school appoints students to formal leadership positions and the school offers a leadership programme for all Grade 7s. This programme is designed to stretch and challenge pupils in the area of leadership. It encourages students to take initiatives, which will inspire and challenge their lives as well as the lives of their peers, while allowing them to develop and grow, as they aspire to achieve their personal goals.

Students are encouraged to step out of their comfort zones and take risks and in doing so they will learn more about themselves and the world around them. The annual Job-shadow program is an integral part of the preparation for the Grade 7 student to continue to the FET phase at the end of Grade 9.