A focus on well-being and achievement in Years Seven to Nine

Let’s face it. Middle School can be tricky for everyone in the family! Your child’s brain and body is growing at a rate comparable to their first year of life. And with changing schedules, new friends, and growing independence, it can take time for parents to adjust as well.

In Middle School, we recognise how tumultuous early-teenage years can be. We also see within them a huge opportunity to help your child choose the right path.

Learn and grow in a safe, supportive environment

At GSG, pastoral care (that is, the care we take of your child — socially and emotionally) goes hand-in-hand with the academic programme. That’s because we know that in order to learn, your child first has to feel safe and cared for.

In Middle School, we operate under the following understandings:

  • Your child grows and develops at their own pace
  • Specialised pastoral care and family involvement support your child as they become young adults
  • Adolescents love hands-on activities and relevant, meaningful lesson topics
  • Middle School students want to be heard — and it’s our job to provide opportunities for that to happen

Our pastoral care of Year Sevens is a particular point of pride for us at GSG. Starting well before the first day of school, your child (whether they’re a day student or a boarder) will be given opportunities see what life will be like at GSG.

Year Seven: Embracing change

Change is the overarching theme of Year Seven. For several years, your child has been focused on starting high school. And when the moment arrives, they might be excited, elated, nervous, terrified — or all of the above.

At GSG, we’ll support your child every step of the way. Our Year Seven Transition Programme is designed to make your child feel welcome and confident as they start High School.

This support system includes:

  • Homeroom: This is your child’s home base. Their homeroom becomes the anchor point for most activities and learning in Year Seven.
  • Pastoral care: Your child will spend much of the first week with their homeroom teacher, learning about how to stay organised and find their way around campus, as well as getting to know their classmates. As a result, most students develop a strong relationship with their homeroom teacher. This relationship will help your child (and the family!) navigate the first year of High School.
  • Engaging learning: In Year Seven, your child will have the chance to experience all that GSG has to offer in terms of subjects. Apart from the core subjects they’re probably expecting, they’ll try a number of new subjects over the course of the year. Everything from Agriculture, Music, Hospitality, and Technologies is on offer. Trying new things means our Year Sevens discover new interests, build self confidence and discover new skills.
  • Outreach: Year-group activities and House events give our Year Sevens a chance to forge relationships with student leaders across Middle and Senior School, laying the groundwork for the years ahead. They can’t stay in Year Seven forever! Regular exposure to whole-school activities and events will help your child develop a strong connection to the school community. On top of that, they’ll get a sense of the privileges and responsibilities that being a GSG student affords them.

Year Eight: Embracing choice

In Year Eight, it’s all about choice.

Thanks to broad subject exposure in Year Seven, your Year Eight child will be ready to make some decisions about their educational path, including choosing elective subjects.

They’ll be making choices in other parts of their life, too.

  • Social life: From peer groups to co-curricular activities, your Year Eight child will choose and learn to manage commitments and expectations in a positive, proactive manner
  • Physical wellbeing: As your child gets older, they are more responsible for their physical health — in Year Eight, we focus on choosing healthy activities, nutrition, and relationships

Mental health: When the tough stuff happens, your child will learn to respond appropriately, choosing resilience and learning positive life lessons in a safe environment

Year Nine: Embracing challenge

By Year Nine, your child will be an expert-level Middle Schooler. On top of that, they’ll be a role model for younger students.

Leadership opportunities abound for Year Nine students, and your child will be presented with the following challenges:

  • To help others, in the school community and beyond
  • To know themselves, including their values and preferences
  • To acknowledge the impacts of their behaviour
  • To work collaboratively with others for the greater good

In this final year of Middle School, your child will look ahead and make some decisions about their academic and cocurricular paths in Senior School. Challenge: accepted!

Middle School opportunities

Our Middle School focus — Change, Choice, Challenge — is the bedrock of everything your child will do in Years Seven to Nine at GSG. It is woven into the fabric of each lesson, experience, and interaction.

Your child will work through a rich, rigorous programme, driven by the Australian Curriculum. This includes:

  • Hands-on learning
  • Mindful integration of technology
  • The investigation of new subjects
  • Exposure to Indigenous culture, history, and story
  • Understanding the richness of our region
  • A focus on sustainability and conservation
  • Immersive, challenging camps and excursions

Middle School at GSG is made vibrant and inclusive by supportive, committed staff members and fun, enthusiastic students. And your child will fit right in.

We’d be delighted to show you around!