Australian government preschools and schools work with a national curriculum called the Australian Curriculum.

Australian Curriculum – General Capabilities

Twenty-first century learning does not fit neatly into a curriculum solely organised by learning areas or subjects. That is why the Australian Curriculum has identified a comprehensive set of knowledge, skills and dispositions or general capabilities that will assist students to live and work successfully in the twenty-first century.

The Shape of the Australian Curriculum v3.0. identifies seven general capabilities to be addressed in the Australian Curriculum. These are:
– Literacy
– Numeracy
– Information and communication technology competence
– Critical and creative thinking
– Personal and social competence
– Ethical behaviour
– Intercultural understanding


In the Arts students learn:
– to create art works through practice and experience in dance, drama, media, music and the visual arts
– to look at, talk about and enjoy all kinds of arts experiences and arts works
– to develop particular arts skills and techniques
– how the arts look and feel different from one culture to another
– about the different histories and traditions of dance, drama, music, media and the visual arts
– how the arts are being changed by new technologies
– about the arts industry and the potential career pathways it offers.

Design and Technology

Design and Technology is about ‘making and doing’ and recognising the role people play in designing and creating new technologies to meet a need or solve a problem. Design and Technology covers engineering, information and communication technology, multimedia studies, electronics, robotics, food and textile studies. Students develop the skills to look critically at technologies and issues arising from their manufacture and use. As students ‘make’, they test their ideas and thinking against reality by applying skills and techniques in safe and responsible ways. They learn to be creative, designing solutions to problems. Through this they learn that they can effect change.


In English, students develop their skills as listeners, speakers, readers, viewers and writers. They learn about the power of language, how it is used in different ways for different purposes and how to communicate effectively and imaginatively in a wide range of situations. In particular they learn to apply their skills in different ways to understand and produce multimedia texts emerging through the growth of information communication technologies. Students learn to understand and use the English language appropriately in its many forms – spoken, written and multimedia – and as a result will be able to participate in a range of activities in the home, in the community and in the workplace.

Health and Physical Education

Through Health and Physical Education children and students learn about people’s physical, intellectual, emotional, spiritual and social aspects.
This learning area focuses on:
– ‘participation in physical activity’ as compared to ‘fitness’
– the teaching and application of skills in a variety of physical activities
– the importance of safe and respectful behaviours within safe environments
– the importance of understanding oneself in different situations
– food and nutrition
– personal development and group skills.
Through these, students will:
– develop a positive outlook on lifelong participation in regular physical activity
– grow personally and socially in order to benefit themselves and others
– develop understandings and take action about health and its importance for both the individual and the community.


Mathematics is a way of understanding the world through the use of number, measurement and space. Learners investigate and analyse mathematical problems through investigating, comparing, reflecting, and testing information to work out possible answers. They develop the mathematical skills and understandings that they need in all areas of their lives. They explore and analyse data and numerical and spatial patterns, learn about measurement and number, and develop spatial understanding and geometric reasoning.


The emphasis in science is on learners developing understandings of the physical and biological world in which they live, and an appreciation of the relationships they have with these worlds. To do this, learners need an understanding of the use of scientific processes such as investigating, collecting and interpreting information, and communicating. This, along with the ability to think critically and to measure the impact of science on society, is essential to learners success in this area. Students learn about the sciences involved with the earth in space, energy systems, life systems and matter.

Society and Environment

In Society and Environment, children and students increase their understanding, knowledge and skills and develop attitudes and values to help them participate as active and informed citizens in their local and global society. Learning takes place through a range of disciplines and studies including history, geography, Aboriginal studies, civics and citizenship, studies in religion and environmental education.
Through these studies, learners will develop their knowledge and understanding of: – the society they live in
– other societies in the world
– the relationships between people and their society, and
– the relationship between society and the environment.