Academic Curriculum


At Dilworth Junior Campus, the teaching of Literacy in English follows the New Zealand English Curriculum. For the boys, this involves two interconnected strands, each encompassing the oral, written, and visual forms of the language.

Making meaning of ideas or information they receive

  • (Listening, Reading, and Viewing)

Creating meaning for themselves or others

  • (Speaking, Writing, and Presenting)

Accordingly, the key skills to be developed include enabling boys to be able to write with clarity and legibility, to read with core understanding, to be able to understand visual images and respond appropriately, to be able to listen with discernment, speak with confidence to a group and present work in a variety of appropriate media. All boys have written and visual work published in the annual “Castle” magazine. Every boy participates in a Formal Speech Competition each year.


Helping with Literacy at Home

"Learning to read between the lines"

Readers who successfully "read between the lines" are able to pick up clues that the author leaves in the text. They also connect their own life experiences to what they are reading. This type of reading requires that the reader act like a detective. He needs to make logical conclusions about the meaning of the text, by using evidence. This evidence can take two forms; clues left by the author and experiences from the reader's own life.


Help develop reading comprehension by reading and discussing what your child reads.
One way to help your child improve his reading comprehension is to read what he is reading yourself. Once you have some knowledge of the texts your child is reading, try opening up a conversation with questions or statement starters like:

  • I wonder why...
  • Why do you think...?
  • What do you think will happen...?
  • This reminds me of...
  • What do you think the author means by...?
  • This is similar to...
  • I'm confused about..


Learning Languages

Students in Years 7 & 8 all learn French and Te Reo Maori (one period each language) per week.

Le Français
Learning Languages (other than the NZ official ones) is one of the eight Essential Learning Areas of the New Zealand Curriculum.

The boys enjoy learning to use familiar expressions and everyday vocabulary - greetings, classroom instructions, colours and so on. They also learn a little about France and some aspects of French life and customs, such as food & drink. The classroom learning is supported by use of fun, online programmes, such as Linguascope.

“In learning languages, students learn to communicate in an additional language, develop their capacity to learn further languages, and explore different world views in relation to their own.”
- The New Zealand Curriculum, page 8.

Te Reo Maori

Ko te reo Máori te kákahu o te whakaaro, te huarahi i te ao túroa.
Maori language is the clothing of thought, the way of the established world.

Te Reo Maori is one of the official languages of Aotearoa-New Zealand. Maori see language as a taonga (treasure), to be valued and respected by all. In learning Te Reo, Maori students strengthen their cultural identities and non-Maori work towards sharing cultural understanding.

The boys focus on oral skills and on learning basic language functions, to develop their knowledge and awareness of Maori protocols. They enjoy learning haka and waiata, great tools for cooperative learning.

Ko te reo te mauri o te mana Máori.
Language is the talisman of Maori strength.



At Dilworth Junior Campus, the teaching of Mathematics follows the New Zealand Mathematics Curriculum. For the boys, this involves the specific areas of Number & Algebra, Geometry & Measurement and Statistics.

Weekly basic facts practice is also an important component in every year group. Aspects of the Numeracy Project are a component in the teaching of Mathematics and the development of mathematical understanding.

Mathematics is one subject where boys are taught in ability groups, to best foster their learning.

Selected students are registered each year for the Otago University Problem Challenge. This is a mathematics problem solving competition, aimed primarily at students in Years 7 and 8, although it is considered suitable for Year 6 students who demonstrate exceptional ability. The problems included in this challenge aim to develop and extend the skill needed for problem solving.

All students have access to ‘Mathletics,’ which is a website-based mathematics programme. This programme supports the class programme, providing additional opportunities for students to improve their basic computation skills and practise mathematical concepts. It is proving to be a motivating and stimulating means of improving basic computation skills.

Helping with Numeracy at Home

  • Be supportive and show a positive attitude to maths learning
  • Listen to them explain their thinking
  • Give them opportunities to do maths, eg counting money, measuring things, reading numbers around them, playing games or reading times and timetables


Performing Arts

Dilworth Junior Campus offers a specialist teacher programme for Performing Arts. In class lessons, students experience Dance, Drama and Music

During Dance lessons, students will:

  • create, choreograph and perform dance art works
  • interpret dance works from different times and cultures
  • prepare to participate in the House Dance and Haka competition

During Drama lessons, students will:

  • work in different roles
  • respond to dramatic works
  • prepare to participate in the biennial School Production

During Music lessons, students will:

  • participate in class and school-wide singing
  • learn basic ukulele chords, in preparation for the Ukulele Festival
  • play class marimba/xylophone pieces, in preparation for the Marimba Festival
  • learn rhythmic notation using untuned percussion
  • prepare for participation in the House Music Competition
  • analyse and appreciate music from different times and cultures
  • compose using ‘Garageband’ software



Mā te whakaaro nui e hanga te whare;
Mā te mātauranga e whakaū.
Big ideas create the house;
Knowledge maintains it.

Dilworth Junior Campus offers a specialist teaching programme for Science, in a purpose-built Science Room, with high quality resources. Science is an integral part of our everyday lives, and so learning in Science is essential, in order to understand the world in which we live and work. In recognition of this, Science is one of the areas of learning deemed to be “essential” for all New Zealand students. For this reason all boys at the Dilworth Junior Campus participate in learning Science.

Science topics at the Junior Campus are based around the study of the inter-relationships between the physical, biological and material worlds, together with earth and beyond.

By studying science, students:

  • develop an understanding of the world, built on current scientific theories
  • learn that science involves particular processes and ways of developing and organising knowledge and that these continue to evolve
  • use their current scientific knowledge and skills for problem solving and developing further knowledge
  • use scientific knowledge and skills to make informed decisions about the communication, application, and implications of science, as these relate to their own lives and cultures and to the sustainability of the environment


Social Science

At Dilworth Junior Campus, the teaching of Social Science follows the New Zealand English Curriculum. Through a social inquiry based approach, students at Dilworth explore the nature of belonging to, and participating in society, and being a part of a global community. Using a social inquiry approach, students:

  • ask questions, gather information and background ideas, and examine relevant and current issues
  • explore and analyse people’s values and perspectives
  • consider the ways in which people make decisions and participate in social action
  • reflect on and evaluate the understandings they have developed and the responses that may be required

Belonging is closely linked to concepts of identity, groups, and communities and is analysed through multiple experiences and contexts. Participating in society is closely linked to the concept of belonging, which is why these two concepts are often studied together. Students are part of many communities, including local iwi, national and global communities. Students are encouraged to think about their involvement in global activities and actions. These concepts are integral to fulfilling the aim of Social Science education.

Map, Atlas and General World Knowledge provide a foundation for work in Social Science.



At Dilworth Junior Campus the teaching of Technology follows the New Zealand Technology Curriculum, namely;

“Technology is intervention by design: the use of practical and intellectual resources to develop products and systems…that expand human possibilities by addressing needs and realising opportunities”
- Taken from The New Zealand Curriculum 2007. P.32

All boys at the Junior Campus have a double period of Technology every week. This takes place in a specialised multi-media workshop. Boys undertake a variety of projects each year to help develop their skills and knowledge of the three Technology curriculum strands: Nature of Technology, Technological Practice and Technological Knowledge. For more information on the Technology Curriculum, see the Techlink website.

Boys experience many different contexts and projects. Currently, technological coverage includes materials (wood, metal, plastics, card, ceramics, fabrics), graphics, electronics, mechanisms, and structures, ergonomics, biotechnology and environmental design.


Visual Art

Dilworth Junior Campus offers an engaging and dynamic specialist teacher programme for Visual Art. Students are given broad learning experiences and opportunities to explore and experience success with a wide range of media including photography, sculpture, painting and printmaking. This takes place in a purpose built visual art room, with high quality resources. There are regular exhibitions of students' work and the ‘visual arts’ are celebrated and valued by the school community.