Literacy and Numeracy

Newstead Primary has a strong focus on literacy and numeracy.


In the senior classes students are taught strategies to understand text features and the language devices of texts. Students make personal responses to texts, interpret, analyse and use comprehension strategies to interpret and analyse information and ideas, comparing content from a variety of textual sources including media and digital texts.

In the junior classes students are taught the concepts of print, phonic knowledge, word and sentence grammar, and visual language. Students are taught strategies to build their comprehension, accuracy, fluency and to extend their vocabulary. We build our reading muscles by reading at home every day, and encourage parents to read with and chat about the book their child is reading.


Students plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive texts, choosing and experimenting with text structures and language features appropriate to their level. Sound Waves is an evidence-based program that used to assist the teaching of spelling across the school, and punctuation and grammar are taught at each year level. Newstead Primary has excellent spelling results in NAPLAN.

Speaking and listening

Students are taught language for social interaction, language to evaluate, and formal language to present publicly. In the junior rooms there is a strong emphasis on developing and extending vocabulary. Students are encouraged to engage in conversations and discussions, using active listening, showing interest, and contributing ideas, information and questions, taking turns and recognising the contributions of others.

In the senior rooms students participate in and contribute to discussions, clarifying and interrogating ideas, developing and supporting arguments, sharing and evaluating information, experiences and opinions, and use interaction skills, varying conventions of spoken interactions according to group size, formality of interaction and needs and expertise of the audience School-wide speaking and listening protocols are in every classroom.


Newstead Primary School follows the Victorian Curriculum to teach mathematics. Students are taught at their point of need, and small groups are utilised for maximum learning opportunities. In the junior classes, there is a strong emphasis on practical, hands-on activities to support the teaching of the fundamentals of Numeracy. A range of resources, including digital, textbook-based and manipulatives combine to ensure that the numeracy program is meaningful, engaging and fun. Students are introduced to open-ended problems that help them develop a critical and thoughtful approach to mathematics and are encouraged to work together in pairs and small groups, as well as having the chance to work by themselves. Throughout the year, students will be given opportunities to practice and revisit mathematical skills they have begun to master, ensuring they become confident, well-equipped and numerate individuals. Wherever possible, the numeracy program makes connections to real-world problems and circumstances, so students understand the purpose of their learning. Formal and informal assessments, as well as teacher observations, ensure students develop their understandings in a sequential and ordered fashion.