Principles of Learning and Teaching

Students learn best when:

1. The learning environment is supportive and productive.

In learning environments that reflect this principle the teacher:

  • builds positive relationships through knowing and valuing each student
  • promotes a culture of value and respect for individuals and their communities
  • uses strategies that promote students' self-confidence and willingness to take risks with their learning
  • ensures each student experiences success through structured support, the valuing of effort, and recognition of their work.


2. The learning environment promotes independence, interdependence and self motivation.

In learning environments that reflect this principle the teacher:

  • encourages and supports students to take responsibility for their learning
  • uses strategies that build skills of productive collaboration.

3. Students' needs, backgrounds, perspectives and interests are reflected in the learning program.

In learning environments that reflect this principle the teacher:

  • uses strategies that are flexible and responsive to the values, needs and interests of individual students
  • uses a range of strategies that support the different ways of thinking and learning
  • builds on students' prior experiences, knowledge and skills
  • capitalises on students' experience of a technology rich world.

4. Students are challenged and supported to develop deep levels of thinking and application.

In learning environments that reflect this principle the teacher:

  • plans sequences to promote sustained learning that builds over time and emphasises connections between ideas
  • promotes substantive discussion of ideas
  • emphasises the quality of learning with high expectations of achievement
  • uses strategies that challenge and support students to question and reflect
  • uses strategies to develop investigating and problem solving skills
  • uses strategies to foster imagination and creativity.

5. Assessment practices are an integral part of teaching and learning.

In learning environments that reflect this principle the teacher:

  • designs assessment practices that reflect the full range of learning program objectives
  • ensures that students receive frequent constructive feedback that supports further learning
  • makes assessment criteria explicit
  • uses assessment practices that encourage reflection and self assessment
  • uses evidence from assessment to inform planning and teaching.

6. Learning connects strongly with communities and practice beyond the classroom.

In learning environments that reflect this principle the teacher:

  • supports students to engage with contemporary knowledge and practice
  • plans for students to interact with local and broader communities and community practices
  • uses technologies in ways that reflect professional and community practices.

This policy was ratified by the Rossbourne School Council – 20 July 2011
Distribution – www.rossbourne.vic.edu.au