Communities

Junior Learning Community

Junior Learning Community Guide booklet Prep - Year 6 Enrolment Form

Our Junior Learning Community (JLC) sets a student's educational foundation in a safe and caring environment that focuses on their social, emotional, physical and academic growth. Every child is a unique creation with the potential to reach their personal aspirations, and make a difference in society using their God-given gifts and abilities.

We believe that children have an immense capacity to learn if their strengths and needs are identified and addressed.
Head of Junior Learning Community
About Our Community

Our supportive Junior Learning Community ensures that every student who joins Hillcrest joins a welcoming and inclusive learning environment. We believe if a student feels secure and valued, inspired and challenged in their learning, and comfortable in their environment, they will ultimately succeed. Our aim is to promote a culture of excellence, where all students can achieve their full potential; where effort is rewarded and success is celebrated. 

We provide an innovative education and outstanding teachers to help students develop intellectual strength. Our dedicated staff get to know every student and identify talent, while providing support where required. All staff are committed Christians with a heart to lead our students on their unique academic, spiritual and cocurricular journeys, and see their role as an opportunity to use their gifts and talents to fulfil their God-given purpose.

JLC Facilities
Prep - Year 2 Castle

This precinct provides an innovative and unique learning experience for our junior students. This innovative and exciting Precinct was completed in 2018 and consists of twelve state-of-the-art learning spaces in the design of a castle, and includes vibrant and flexible learning spaces that encompass both indoor and outdoor areas. Retractable doors, break out spaces, modern furniture, quiet zones, and interactive play equipment, all create an environment that enhances curiosity and sparks creativity. The classroom design fosters an atmosphere where students feel confident and safe, and eager to engage in open-ended learning experiences.

Years 5 - 6 Precinct 

This area caters for older students in our Junior Learning Community and provides an innovative, purpose-built environment that inspires excitement and curiosity. It features an expansive open-learning area and breakout rooms, including a sound studio, green-room, Skype room, Maker Space, media room, café and quiet study area. There is a strong focus on Design-Centred Learning (DCL) in the Precinct which engages students in tasks and assessments that involve solving a problem for a real-world audience

Find out more about our College Facilities

Subjects & Curriculum
Subject Areas

The JLC provides a supportive learning environment, with a balanced curriculum and cocurricular program. Along with core learning areas of English, Maths, Science, HASS, Technologies, the Arts and Christian Living, our students from Prep - Year 6 have specialised Music, Art, French (Years 3-6), Design and Technology and Physical Education lessons. Students can also engage in additional cocurricular programs including Chess, Speech and Drama, and various other interest areas. 

Christian Studies

As a Christian College, we teach from the Bible and embed biblical principles through our daily learnings and interactions with students. Life Groups occur every morning in our classrooms, and set a wonderful atmosphere and platform for the day, as classes read from the bible, pray together, enjoy worship music, and are encouraged through their devotional time with God. 

Hilly Kids

Our Hilly Kids chapel assemblies are a highlight of the week for many Prep - 6 students, as they celebrate each other’s achievements, watch interactive videos designed to help younger children learn about God in a fun way, and enjoy a lively time of singing and praising God.

French

Junior French lessons occur in Years 3 - 6, where students have the opportunity to engage with a variety of spoken, visual and written texts with high levels of support. They also join in with French stories, songs, imaginative play, and simple conversations, and participate in intercultural experiences to develop new ways of understanding the world. 

Academic Music

Learning music from a young age teaches valuable skills and assists children in the development of literacy, numeracy, hand-eye coordination and aural/listening skills, as well as providing opportunities to teach cooperation with others, and positive social skills. Our music program at Hillcrest is informed by research relating to child development, and our young students all have the chance to develop a strong foundation for musical learning through the concepts of beat, rhythm, inner hearing, timbre, pitch and singing.

Gifted & Talented Programs

Our Gifted and Talented extension programs in the Junior Learning Community consist of a full time Gifted and Talented program, and a selection of short courses for gifted students, across various subject areas.
Highly gifted students have the capacity for higher-level learning and require a more challenging program, which is provided through our full-time gifted and talented program for Years 3-6 students. Consideration for the full-time program begins in the preparatory years, and continues through Years 1 and 2. Our short courses are condensed units of work where students seeking extension and enrichment in a particular area of interest or ability, can participate. Read more about our Gifted and Talented programs.

Design-Centred Learning

Our JLC students participate in a skills-based Design-Centred Learning (DCL) program which is embedded throughout the curriculum and involves students solving real-world problems. DCL is very successful in developing interpersonal, social and communication skills, and equipping students to be successful at school and beyond.

I Love Reading

I Love Reading (ILR) is a unique literacy program taught in our JLC, which has been designed to facilitate the rapid learning of reading. This comprehensive program aims to remove the complexities from reading, empowering early learners to grasp literacy concepts from a younger age. ILR combines proven literacy methodologies with an innovative approach to learning. This fresh model for literacy learning assists early readers to learn every sound, of every word of the English language through a multi-faceted, yet simple phonetic coding system. The aim is to equip children as they move from ‘Learning to Read’ to ‘Reading to Learn’ and foster a love for reading along the way.

Excursions & Camps
Class Excursions

Learning at Hillcrest is not confined to the four walls of a classroom, and all of our classes at Hillcrest embark on a range of excursions throughout the year. Our College excursions are designed to enrich our curriculum and ultimately deepen our students’ understanding of the world around them. Excursion costs are generally included in College fees, and often include visits to theme parks, museums, galleries, technology centres, wildlife parks and much more.

Year Level Camps

Camps are a compulsory part of our College curriculum and begin from Year 4 with an overnight camp, and increase in duration through the year levels. Camps are the highlight of the College calendar for many students, and provide a wonderful way to connect with peers beyond the classroom. Students often grow in self-confidence during our exciting College camps, as they extend their boundaries, overcome fears, create lasting memories and develop friendships that carry them throughout their College years

Year 4 Camp Overnight camp

Year 5 Camp Two-night camp

Year 6 Camp Two-night camp

Sport & Cocurricular
Sports Program

Prep - Year 3

Prep – Year 3 students have a weekly lesson to practice gross and fine motor skills, body awareness, body control, integrating movements and manipulating equipment, interaction with others, engagement in activities and introduction to sport-specific skills - throwing, catching, ball control, tracking and trapping, kicking, striking

Years 4 - 6

Years 4 – 6 students will have a weekly Physical Education lesson to practise progressive development of all fundamental and specialised movement skills and techniques; improve their physical performance in fitness elements [cardio-respiratory endurance, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility] for health and wellbeing, and refine their skills in teamwork, tactics and strategies in sports and physical activities.

Aquatics and Sports Competitions

Prep – Year 4: Learn to Swim and Stroke Correction
Years 3 and 4: Sport Development Program
Years 5 and 6: Surf Smart Program
Prep – Year 3 Sports Day: Interhouse Carnivals
Years 4 – 6: Swimming, Cross Country and Athletics Carnivals
Years 5 and 6: Interschool Sport Competition

Additional Sports Development

We offer a range of programs to ensure students can develop their individual sporting abilities, including:

  • Prep - Year 6: Our Sparks, Flames and Explosions programs offer a range of sports development and extracurricular opportunities before and after school, at minimal cost.
  • Years 4 - 6: Sport Season Training includes running and athletics, AFL, netball, hockey, soccer, rugby league, basketball, cricket, baseball / softball, touch football
  • Representative Pathways for 10, 11 and 12 year olds who wish to complete in District, Regional and National Sport Trials and Championships
  • Afterschool Sport Clinics (sport-specific organisations) include Viva Soccer, Heat Mini Ball basketball, AFL Auskick, tennis, and netball
Cocurricular Music Program

Instrumental groups

  • Ensembles
  • Violin and Piano(from Prep)
  • Guitar (from Year 3)
  • Band (Year 5)
  • String Beans (Year 5)
  • Intermediate Band (from Year 6)
  • Junior Orchestra (from Year 6)
  • Individual Vocal and Instrumental Instruction

Choral Groups

  • Chorus (Year 2)
  • Hillcrest Blokes (Years 2 – 6) Boys Only
  • Choir Junior Singers and Primary Voices (Years 3/4)
  • Voice and other instruments (from Year 4)
  • Chorale (Years 5/6)
  • Choral Excellence Program:
  • Poco Voce (Year 5/6)
  • Bella Voce (Years 6 – 9)
JLC Leadership

We offer a number of programs designed to foster specific leadership and interpersonal skills, and empower our students to have a positive influence within our College community. 

Class Buddy Program

Our successful Class Buddy Program promotes peer mentoring and unity across the year levels, as younger students are paired with older students, for a range of classroom activities. 

Castle Leaders

Our Year 2 students have the opportunity to volunteer for our Castle Leaders program, and are responsible for helping to build community in the Castle Precinct, roaming the Junior playgrounds, and caring for younger students.

Year 6 Leaders

As the oldest students in our JLC, Year 6 students are all regarded as leaders in the community and are expected to act as positive role models. We offer a number of specific Year 6 leadership roles including Captains, Vice Captains, House Captains and Prefects, and students are selected for these positions. Our Junior Learning Community leaders and are expected to display exemplary behaviour and take on higher responsibilities as Hillcrest ambassadors.

Year 6 Mediators

Our Year 6 Mediation Team also play an important role in exercising pastoral care for the Prep – Year 5 students, as they are empowered to foster a harmonious community within the playground or classroom. Students are chosen for these roles based on their suitability to interact with younger students, and all receive training in peer mediation.

BYOD

Our students live in a digital age and we are cognisant of the need to educate students how to successfully and responsibly operate electronic devices. Students in the JLC can bring their own device from home for classroom work purposes, but must ensure that the device has Microsoft Office software installed, and is stylus-enabled.