Excellence in education
Multi-age Grouping at Pioneer Village School
Pioneer Village School has a strong commitment to Multi-age Groupings (MAG) groupings.
At Pioneer Village School we recognise that all children develop at different ages, and through the use of multi-age groupings we are able to better cater for each child’s particular learning requirements. Having multi-age classes allows all students to work from their own level, and many opportunities exist for extension as well as support.
In many schools of today The Factory Model of Education, where children are grouped by their age and then into year levels, is still in place. However, at Pioneer Village School, we recognise the need to provide better learning opportunities for our students.
Contemporary studies in neuroscience support the value of multi-age groupings in educational settings. John Geake author of The Brain at School: Educational Neuroscience in the Classroom (2009: p64) states:
A school of the future will be structured around multi-age classes within a vertical curriculum structure that has children moving between academic levels for different subjects as needs be. Since brain development is driven by life experiences, rather than chronological age per se, individual children’s learning needs are best addressed by having them engage in appropriate curriculum that their stage of learning readiness…….
In a multi-age classroom, students learn together in an environment that encourages mentoring between students, social and leadership skill development, as well as increased achievement and collaboration opportunities. We advocate multi-age education as it puts learners at the center; socially and academically.
Pioneer Village School educators committed to multi-age groupings in 2017. Since then, all Teachers and Education Assistants have been extensively trained by various experts in evaluating, planning, and teaching students as a whole class regardless of age. The advantages of multi-age groupings at Pioneer Village School include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Exposure to a diverse range of talents, aptitudes, and interests, and a wide curriculum that is not limited to a single year.
- Development of self-esteem through a greater understanding of one’s own abilities, without the burden of comparison to those in a single year level.
- Children and teachers may have the opportunity to work together for more than one year, which enhances continuity of learning and the forming of positive relationships with teachers, and with other children.
- Work in an environment prepared for a broad age range, so students can see the whole progression of the curriculum for their group, progress independently in areas of strength, and also revisit areas of knowledge comfortably as required.
- Opportunities to participate in peer teaching opportunities, and to develop and experience definite roles, one as the older in a group and one as the younger.
- Experience a sense of caring and responsibility for others regardless of age.