New arrival students who enrol at the school and who have little or no English are eligible to access this program. This is an intensive English language program where children receive up to eleven hours of instruction each week in small groups of up to ten students. Children remain in this program for between six to twelve months before exiting to either the Transition or EAL Programs.
The focus of the New Arrival Program is on oral language to develop a level of understanding that enables children to function and understand basic instructions in the mainstream classroom. The New Arrival teachers commence with a focus on the alphabet, sounds, basic vocabulary then move to themes easy for the children to relate to and understand such as, ‘Their family’, ‘The Body’, ‘Food’, ‘Shopping’, ‘Clothes’, ‘Transport’.
Children are taught a repertoire of language phrases so they are able to build on their limited English language with gradually introduced vocabulary.
The teaching of reading evolves from the student’s oral language. Students retell an activity or experience and this is recorded for them to read back. Shared wall stories also form the basis of reading activities.
Teaching letter formation is important for students, particularly if they have come from a background where a completely different script or characters have been taught. Repetitive modelled sentences, modelled wall stories and shared writing are taught in a supportive approach with significant support from the teacher.