Learning at Good Shepherd
Good Shepherd has three campuses; Palmerston, Leanyer and Howard Springs.
The Palmerston Campus has an Early Learning Centre for 3-4 year old children and a Junior School; Transition to Year 5.
The Leanyer Campus has an Early Learning Centre for 3-4 year old children and a Junior School; Transition to Year 5.
The Howard Springs Campus caters for students in Years 6 – Year 12 at the Middle / Senior School Campus. The Junior School caters for Transition to Year 5 students and the Early Learning Centre caters for 3-4 year old children.
We welcome your interest in the many opportunities our learning community has to offer and invite you to visit the campus for a tour of the facilities and to meet with the Principal, staff and student leaders. We hope the information within this website, which reflects the values and aspirations held by our school community will help to guide you in this most important decision.
Good Shepherd is an International Baccalaureate World School, offering both the Primary and Middle Years Programmes.
Howard Springs Campus - Junior School
Early Learning Centre - Year 5
How fortunate the students are to have the opportunity to go from an Early Learning Centre all the way to Year 12 on the same campus!
Students utilise the Middle and Senior School facilities such as the library and Chapel, as well as expertise from Middle and Senior School students and staff to enrich their learning. The campus has been designed to take advantage of its bush setting and the students greatly enjoy spending their play time outdoors using their creative ideas and imagination during bush play. They have a covered basketball court which is used for Physical Education lessons, (with a specialist teacher), fitness lessons as well as during recess and lunch for free play. A playground designed to enhance students' gross motor sills and a flying fox which the students enjoy during playtime adds to the recreational facilities for students.
All students from Year 5 learn German as an additional language. This is an innovative and engaging program taught by a native German speaking teacher. The students are very successful in their acquisition of German as a second language, going on to further enhance their learning in the Middle School. Good Shepherd is a partner school for the German government initiative 'Schools: Partners of the Future' (PASCH). Being in this partnership provides the College with opportunities for additional resources, professional learning and worldwide connection and exchange in regards to German language learning. The language pathways at Good Shepherd go from Transition through to Year 12 and being a partner school allows the College to offer the internationally recognised German Language Diploma (DSD I and II). Good Shepherd is only one of seven schools in Australia to offer this Diploma.
Most importantly, the Howard Springs Junior School values families, staff and students who make up such a wonderful, rich community. There are regular discos, breakfasts and twilight camps throughout the year. Class carers organise events for parents to socialise outside of school. There is a dedicated team of teachers and support staff who engage students in their learning. Students are the biggest asset and this campus delights in seeing them develop socially, emotionally, physically, spiritually and academically.
"I love learning German and want to keep learning it when I'm in the Middle School" - Howard Springs Junior School student
Howard Springs Campus - Middle and Senior School
Years 6 - 12
This beautiful campus in Howard Springs is extremely popular for local, suburban and rural families looking for outstanding, highly affordable secondary education. Families from other Darwin suburbs also value Good Shepherd's many offerings and make use of the inter-school bus from the Leanyer Campus. Eg, families from Darwin's northern suburbs enrol their children into this campus, especially if they have commenced their primary years education at Good Shepherd. In other words, distance is not an issue for so many families wanting to access the Middle and Senior School in Howard Springs.
This campus is very unique in that Year 6 students enrol into secondary education. This is due to the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (IBMYP) which commences in Year 6 and is completed in Year 10. As a culmination of this excellent educational program, students exhibit a Personal Project which they have worked on for nine months - commencing in Term 3 whilst they are in Year 9. The exhibition is always a highlight on the College calendar and the exhibits really do have to be seen to be believed! An incredible showcase of rich learning and student abilities; also demonstrating the commitment of outstanding, highly supportive teachers along this journey.
The IBMYP builds on the learning journey in the IBPYP undertaken in the College's three Junior Schools. Another reason why families from the three Junior Schools will only consider the Middle and Senior School as a secondary schooling option.
Once students move in to the senior years at this campus, they have the choice of a pre-tertiary pathway completing the Northern Territory Certificate of Education and Training (NTCET) or opt for entry into the Career Acceleration Program.
The College embraces a pedagogical approach which places the students at the centre of learning and endeavours to provide opportunities that equip them to develop the skills of learning; through developing their critical and creative thinking, collaboration with other students and teachers, and communicating with others through a variety of mediums and languages.
Transition to Year 10 students study a language other than English. In the IBMYP students select from German, French and Japanese with the emphasis on developing both language skills and a global outlooks.
Fundamental to a Lutheran and International Baccalaureate education is service learning and action. Christian service is a response of the Heart, Head and Hands to the love, forgiveness and mercy of God in Christ. It is motivated by a sense of care and responsibility for all creation. Learners at Good Shepherd can demonstrate their personal commitment to service as a way of showing faith in action. Responsible action at the College is centred on the gospel message and example of Jesus Christ. Service and Action are viewed as integral parts of the learning experiences that IBPYP and IBMYP students will engage in continuously the College.
"Sport is amazing at this campus. The PE teachers are the best and our sports days and athletic carnivals are awesome" - Middle School student
"The support I've received in Senior School has been amazing. I have known what I wanted to do after school for a long time. The teachers here have greatly assisted this important area of my life" - Senior School student
Early Learning Centre - Year 5 (with Little Lambs Play Group)
Caring and dedicated teachers offer experience and passion for students to thrive. The campus is well known for forming caring relationships - obvious to anyone as soon as walking through the front door! This campus has built solid connections with local businesses, organisations and individuals and provides opportunities for community members to visit; enhancing student learning. Students connect globally with International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (IBPYP) students all over the world.
When you walk into the Palmerston Campus, you feel the sense of community immediately! Their strong Class Carer program aims to develop positive relationships within the College community, provide support for families in need, arrange events to enable families to get to know each other, welcome new families and support classroom teachers. The Class Carers work alongside teachers and school leaders to organise annual school community events such as discos, Mother's Day high teas, twilight BBQs and Mother's and Father's Day stalls.
The campus has adopted a campus-wide approach to phonics using the Sounds Write program. This follows the Science of Reading philosophy that targets the crucial phonics skills of segmenting, blending and phoneme manipulation. The teaching staff and school leaders are committed to teaching Reading, Writing and Spelling using the Science of Reading approach.
Palmerston Campus supports the development of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). As well as having a dedicated STEM classroom, they also have a long term partnership with a STEM professional who work with teachers to develop meaningful and authentic experiences for students that fit with their Units of Inquiry.
This campus provides an environment that supports the whole child. Open classrooms allow for students to have flexibility in their learning. In addition to a well-resourced library, ICT Lab, they have a French-language room, STEM classroom, music classroom, specific art room, playgroup room, two kitchen areas, a large indoor multipurpose hall and a dedicated parent and homework centre. The grounds include an oval, play equipment, undercover basketball court and bush play gardens. There is also a fruit and vegetable garden, worm farms and recycling / compost systems!
The IBPYP is centred on student agency and promotes student voice, choice and ownership of their learning. By Year 5, these students are involved in co-designing their learning, planning their assessment tasks and conferencing with their peers.
An outstanding leadership program is offered - commencing in Year 3 where students begin mentoring the Transition students. In Year 4, they continue to mentor their buddies as Year 1 students and take on more responsibilities. By Year 5, these students lead sports houses, coordinate assemblies, organise events and work with the class leaders at all year levels.
Each Wednesday, this campus holds 'Little Lambs Play Group' for children (babies to five year olds). A wonderful opportunity for parents to meet; a safe place for their children to interact and play.
"Good Shepherd is my home away from home" - Palmerston Campus student
Early Learning Centre - Year 5
The Leanyer Campus is situated in the Northern suburbs of Darwin. Their friendly and caring Early Learning staff warmly welcome students from three years old who then continue into the Transition class for Junior School. They have an inter-campus bus that transports students to the Middle School at Howard Springs Campus from Year 6.
This is a gorgeous 'boutique' campus of the College, small in size - but huge in heart and phenomenal in student learning! The grounds are lovely - a perfect expanse of grassed areas and bush for play and imaginations to run wild. There is an undercover basketball court, sand pit and a great variety of play equipment.
Leanyer Campus' dedicated staff work collaboratively to ensure a supportive learning environment for all students; getting to know each individual child and genuinely caring about their wellbeing. They have such a strong academic focus with the Australian Curriculum taught through the inquiry approach of the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme; developing critical and creative thinkers who are caring and contribute to society. Students are encouraged to demonstrate agency and take ownership of their learning and are taught the skills and attributes to be lifelong learners.
There are specialist teachers for Physical Education, French and Music. They ensure inclusion for all students and care for their social and emotional growth with a dedicated Learning Enrichment team and wellbeing program.
There is a wonderful sense of community at the Leanyer Campus. Class Carers give generously of their time to support parents and the school community. They organise events to bring parents, students and staff together. House spirit is celebrated through House activity sessions, encouraging students form across year levels to work together. The leadership and buddy class system enables older students to mentor and support younger students.
Weekly Chapels, assemblies and special events are regularly held at the neighbouring 'Dreambuilders' church. This is especially wonderful for events such as student awards, special presentations and the annual Year 5 Primary Years Programme Exhibition. An awe-inspiring testimony of the incredible learning achieved by these students in their final year of Junior School - via the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme.
Leanyer Campus' goal is to develop the whole child - who lives out the College values of Identity, Service and Respect.
"My favourite part at school is eco-groups and the frilly lizard" - Leanyer Campus student
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