Centre for Learning and Innovation News Update | Ormiston College

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Centre for Learning and Innovation News Update

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Our new Centre for Learning and Innovation (CLI) opened to the school community at the beginning of the year. It has been wonderful seeing our students, parents and staff begin to embrace the facility for learning activities, events and social gatherings. It has certainly become the hub of the school community!

With so much happening, we will be providing regular updates to showcase the spaces, learning activities and the numerous events occurring in the building.

In each update we will include a spotlight learning area to highlight how this space supports teaching and learning in the 21st Century.

Learning Area Spotlight - Secondary School Library

Photo Copyright of Christopher Frederick Jones

This space is set in the south-west of the CLI building. The area can cater for approximately 20 students engaging in a workshop type learning activity or a class of 30 for wide reading.

The space houses:

  • One large bench with charging stations for approximately 10 students
  • Four built-in couches for approximately 8 students
  • Two large couches with a coffee table for approximately 6 students
  • Two reading nooks

The Secondary Library has been strategically designed to empower students’ choice and control over their environment. With the flexible arrangement, students can choose where they work and with whom. It also allows them to change their location and positions as needed. Unlike a traditional classroom with rows of forward-facing seating, this space is modular and arranged to support collaboration, self-directed and active learning. For larger classes, students have also been using the booths in the centre of the CLI.

Why provide activities that promote self-regulation?

Today’s complex world demands self-regulated thinkers who can take responsibility for their lives, their work, and their ongoing learning. In past times, teaching was often viewed as ‘telling’; teachers would organise and direct student learning, tell students what to do and expect compliance. Today, we recognise that this way of working produces dependency and compliance rather than self-regulation. In a rapidly changing world, it is essential that we are providing students with opportunities to engage in higher order thinking, make decisions for themselves, and take ownership of their learning. It is for this reason that self-regulation is a key element in our OC Teaching and Learning Framework.

Highlights of classroom activities and events in our Secondary Library

  • Year 12 Modern History and Year 11 Business students are embracing the zone to further their research skills and gain necessary competences for the life after school. The strategic design of the space allows students to operate in a quiet environment or come together in groups.
  • Year 12 Art students came together for a masterclass in research and referencing. Our Teacher Librarian, Karen Eyre, showed the students how using library services can lead to more scholarly research and to consolidate the necessary requirements of referencing in their assignments.
  • In our newly created subject, Year 8 Academic Development, students had a ‘blind-date with a book’ and worked on developing their in-text inference skills.
  • Junior School parents kindly volunteered their time to undertake the Parent Volunteer Reading Workshop to learn how to assist students with their reading. We are looking forward to welcoming them into the Junior School classroom to assist with the classroom reading groups.
  • We kicked off the Staff Book Club which is held on Friday afternoons once a month. The aim of this initiative is to provide staff with an opportunity to share their love of reading with other literary enthusiasts. The group decided on Richard Powers' “The Overstory” (short-listed for the Man Booker prize) for their first book.


Developing a Reading Culture

The warm and relaxing environment of the Secondary School Library is attracting many of our students to use the space for independent study and quite reading before, after school and during the lunchtime breaks. The CLI is open to our Year 5 to Year 12 students from 7.30am to 5pm Monday to Thursday and 7.30am to 4pm Friday.

Both the Junior and Secondary School Libraries are having a positive impact on our students' interest in personal reading and subsequent borrowing of books. We have seen a dramatic increase in the number of books borrowed compared to previous years!

Photo Copyright of Christopher Frederick Jones

For tips on creating a culture of reading in your home, please read the blog post by Amanda Bowker, Dean of Teaching and Learning.

Junior School Library Spotlight Lessons

Last week, our Preppies heard "Mr Seahorse" to support their in-class activities on the fabulous children's author, Eric Carle. Students learned that male seahorses have pouches and some fish carry their eggs on their head, belly and some even in their mouth!

For Year 1, it was all about animals: the story "Mozzie and Midgie" by Doug MacLeod provided food for thought about what made each of us special and beautiful in different ways.

To provide Year 5 with opportunities to meet their Term 1 reading goals for their classroom reading POWER time, we showcased a variety of genres before settling on a brand-new addition to the collection, the mysterious "Skellig" by David Almond.

If you would like some assistance with finding appropriate novels and books for your child’s personal reading, please contact our Teacher Librarian, Karen Eyre. She will be able to offer you guidance regarding reading material appropriate to your child’s age group and interests.

CLI Community Hub

Prep to Year 2 Library Makerspace Activities

To cater for our younger members of the OC community, we have been offering lunchtime Makerspace activities. Every fortnight, students have the opportunity to visit the CLI to listen to a book reading and undertake a making activity. The purpose of using stories as a hook to the making activities is to broaden the children's reading experiences and allow them to discover how reading opens up whole other worlds and opportunities.

For Library Lovers Day in Week 3, our younger students listen to a story by Peter Carnavas called “The Children who loved Books”. 40 students then participated in making a lover’s card to illustrate their love of reading and Valentine’s Day.


This week, we have been inspired by Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton's THE 13-STOREY TREEHOUSE. Our Prep to Year 2 students will be busy designing rooms for their own treehouse, sewing pillows for the 'Room full of pillows', building paddle-pop tree structures and creating snakes and ladders board games with a micro:bit dice. We look forward to sharing their creations with you.

Junior School STEM Club

Junior School STEM Club kicked off in Week 3 with the theme Lights, Camera, Action! Each week, students will work in group rotations using the Flexible Learning Areas, Recording Studio and Makerspace areas for their inquiry-based project. Last week, our students used the Makerspace to learn how to create prototypes to print on our 3D printers, the Recording Studio's green screen to produce multimodal presentations, and the Flexible Learning Areas to explore mixed reality and how to program a Sphero ball to create a ‘light painting’. We are looking forward to seeing their final creations whereby they use the skills they have learnt during the group rotation to produce a final product.

Parent Volunteers

We are seeking the help of our parent community to assist in our CLI. If you are interested, please contact Tamara Sullivan t.sullivan@ormistoncollege.com.au.

Tamara Sullivan
Head of Academics and Innovation