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  Overview of Essential Skills in English Curriculum  

Reading and Viewing
Discuss different perspectives on complex issues and themes and justify detailed interpretations in selected print and non-print texts, and in current Australian media texts.
• read critically a range of texts and use them to explore different perspectives on complex issues
• develop and justify an interpretation with detailed and well-chosen evidence from the text
• discuss how texts are shaped by the time, place and cultural setting in which they are created
• evaluate the impact of techniques intended to shape an audience's reaction to texts
• draw on strategies that enable detailed critical evaluation of texts with multiple levels of meaning
Read more:
Level 9 Reading and Viewing

Communicate complex, ideas and information effectively through finished writing for different purposes and audiences, using language appropriately.
• use writing to convey detailed information and explore different perspectives on complex subject matter.
• write texts characterised by complexity of purpose and abstract subject matter
• make critical choices of text type, subject matter and language to suit a specific audience and purpose
• experiment with linguistic structures and features for specific effect
• use a range of strategies to plan, compose, revise and edit texts dealing with complex and abstract subject matter
• use appropriate features of spoken and written language conventions
• use appropriate features of form to enhance meaning
• knowledge and use of techniques for understanding and composing different kinds of texts
Read more:
Level 9 Writing

Speaking and Listening
Explore and develop complex ideas and issues orally, giving considered reasons for a point of view, using appropriate language to influence and engage the audience and listening actively and critically to the views of others.
• use speech and listening to explore different perspectives on ideas and issues, and prepare and deliver a formal presentation
• use speech and listening in situations characterised by complexity of purpose, procedure and subject matter
• examine critically the relationship between texts, contexts, speakers and listeners in a range of situations
• use the features of spoken language effectively to deal with complex subject matter in a range of settings
• evaluate critically others' spoken texts and use this knowledge to improve own.
Read more:
Level 9 Speaking and Listening.

Incorporated in all the above three key English and Literacy areas are the interdisciplianry and cross-curriculum priorities of the Victorian Curriculum:

Critical and Creative Thinking
Critical and creative thinking capability aims to ensure that students develop:
• understanding of thinking processes and an ability to manage and apply these intentionally
• skills and learning dispositions that support logical, strategic, flexible and adventurous thinking
• confidence in evaluating thinking and thinking processes across a range of familiar and unfamiliar contexts
Achievement Standard
• students construct and evaluate questions, including their own, for their effectiveness
• they demonstrate a willingness to shift their perspective when generating ideas, resulting in new ways of perceiving solutions
• students structure complex valid arguments
• they explain and apply a range of techniques to test validity within and between arguments
• students identify, articulate, analyse and reflect on their own and others thinking processes
• they use, monitor, evaluate and redirect as necessary a range of learning strategies
students develop, justify and refine criteria to evaluate the quality of ideas, proposals and thinking processe

Personal and Social Capability
The Personal and Social Capability curriculum aims to develop knowledge, understandings and skills to enable students to:
• recognise, understand and evaluate the expression of emotions
• demonstrate an awareness of their personal qualities and the factors that contribute to resilience
• develop empathy for and understanding of others and recognise the importance of supporting diversity for a cohesive community
• understand how relationships are developed and use interpersonal skills to establish and maintain respectful relationships
• work effectively in teams and develop strategies to manage challenging situations constructively.
Achievement Standard
• reflect critically on their emotional responses to challenging situations in a wide range of contexts.
• demonstrate persistence, motivation, initiative and decision-making through completion of challenging tasks.
• evaluate personal characteristics, strategies and sources of support used to cope with stressful situations/life challenges
• analyse the effects of actions that repress human rights and limit the expression of diverse views
• analyse factors that influence different types of relationships
• critique their ability to devise and enact strategies for working in diverse teams, drawing on the skills and contributions of team members to complete complex tasks
• develop and apply criteria to evaluate the outcomes of group tasks and make recommendations for improvements
• generate, apply and evaluate strategies to prevent and resolve conflicts in a range of context

Ethical Capability
The Ethical Capability curriculum aims to develop knowledge, understandings and skills to enable students to:
• analyse and evaluate ethical issues, recognising areas of contestability
• identify the bases of ethical principles and ethical reasoning
• engage with the challenges of managing ethical decision making and action for individuals and groups
• cultivate open-mindedness and reasonableness.
Achievement Standard
• explain connections and distinctions between ethical concepts, identifying areas of contestability in their meanings and relative value.
• analyse and evaluate contested approaches to thinking about consequences and duties in relation to ethical issues.
• examine complex issues, identify the ethical dimensions and analyse commonality and difference between different positions.
• explain how different factors involved in ethical decision-making can be managed.

Intercultural Capability
Intercultural capability aims to develop knowledge, understandings and skills to enable students to:
• demonstrate an awareness of and respect for cultural diversity within the community
• reflect on how intercultural experiences influence attitudes, values and beliefs
• recognise the importance of acceptance and appreciation of cultural diversity for a cohesive community.
Achievement Standard
• critically analyse the complex and dynamic interrelationship between and within cultures and the challenges and benefits of living in an interconnected and culturally diverse world.
• evaluate how intercultural relationships and experiences influence attitudes, beliefs and behaviours in different contexts.
• analyse the components of a cohesive society, and the challenges befits and consequences of maintaining or failing to maintain that cohesion.

Cross-Curriculum Priorities

There are three cross curriculum priorities in the Australian Curriculum:

• Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures
• Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia
• Sustainability.

The cross curriculum priorities are embedded in the curriculum and will have a strong but varying presence depending on their relevance to each of the learning areas.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures
The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander priority provides opportunities for all learners to deepen their knowledge of Australia by engaging with the world’s oldest continuous living cultures. This knowledge and understanding will enrich their ability to participate positively in the ongoing development of Australia.

The English course values Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures. It articulates relevant aspects of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages, literatures and literacies.

All students will develop an awareness and appreciation of, and respect for the literature of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples including storytelling traditions (oral narrative) as well as contemporary literature. Students will be taught to develop respectful critical understandings of the social, historical and cultural contexts associated with different uses of language and textual features.

Students will be taught that there are many languages and dialects spoken in Australia including Aboriginal English and Yumplatok (Torres Strait Islander Creole) and that these languages may have different writing systems and oral traditions. These languages can be used to enhance enquiry and understanding of English literacy.

Asia and Australia's engagement with Asia
In English, the priority of Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia, provides rich and engaging contexts for developing students’ abilities in listening, speaking, reading, viewing and writing.

The English course enables students to explore and appreciate the diverse range of traditional and contemporary texts from and about the peoples and countries of Asia, including texts written by Australians of Asian heritage. It enables students to understand how Australian culture and the English language have been influenced by the many Asian languages used in Australian homes, classrooms and communities.

In this learning area, students draw on knowledge of the Asia region, including literature, to influence and enhance their own creative pursuits. They develop communication skills that reflect cultural awareness and intercultural understanding.

In English, the priority of sustainability provides rich and engaging contexts for developing students’ abilities in listening, speaking, reading, viewing and writing.

The English course assists students to develop the skills necessary to investigate, analyse and communicate ideas and information related to sustainability, and to advocate, generate and evaluate actions for sustainable futures. The content in the language, literature and literacy strands is key to developing and sharing knowledge about social, economic and ecological systems and world views that promote social justice.

In this learning area, students may interrogate a range of texts to shape their decision making in relation to sustainability. They develop the understanding and skills necessary to act responsibly and create texts that inform and persuade others to take action for sustainable futures.

Last up-dated 10 November, 2016
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