Year 7 and 8 Syndicate
The Year 7 and 8 syndicate is designed to provide a sense of belonging both socially and in learning and a sense of unity as a group in the wider school. 2015 brings 5 classes, two each of Year 7 and 8 classes and one Year 7 / 8 class. Each class bears the name of a local maunga - Pukenui, Pukekaroro, Pukehuia, Tokatoka and Pukearenga. To provide some continuity from Primary school and to give our Intermediate students that continuing sense of belonging, we endeavour, within the constraints of timetabling, to have Homeroom teachers who teach more than one core curriculum subject (English Maths and Social Studies), for these classes. The Year 7 and 8s belong to a wider school whanau class with their whanau teacher providing pastoral care, along with their homeroom teacher and the Dean designated for the 7 and 8s. To further develop a sense of unity, we meet as a syndicate for an assembly every two weeks. At these assemblies we share information and celebrate student successes. Friday period 5 is activities afternoon where students choose an activity, ranging from crafts to sport. Trips for Social Studies are planned either for the whole syndicate or the Year group - 7 or 8. The end of the Year brings activities week where the year groups head off for variety of fun activities out of school.
The Years 7 and 8 areas of learning are: English ( 5 periods /week), Mathematics (5 periods / week), Social Studies (3 periods / week), Science (2 periods / week - 1 lab), Physical Education (2 periods / week), Maori (1 period / week), Computeracy (1 period / week), and rotation subjects - Drama, Music, Wood Tech, German, Soft Materials and Food Tech. For English, Social Studies and Science, teachers plan together to create an integrated Inquiry learning programme.
Otamatea High School offers many sporting opportunities for our students with a range of both winter and summer sports. Our school pool is used continuously throughout the summer. The PE department uses an outside provider to give a 5 week programme for our Year 7 and 8s in water skills and safety at the beginning of the year. The season ends with our summer swimming sports. Outside of school we have sporting exchanges with other schools for our Intermediates. Sports gear specifically for the Year 7 and 8 students is issued by our sports monitors at interval and lunchtime. Students also now have their own new playground and play area.
Each Home room class elects two leaders per term. Their responsibility is to help with the organisation of syndicate assemblies, hold class meetings, provide information to teachers from students ideas and work with teachers on upcoming activities. Sports monitors have the responsibility for issuing gear at interval and lunchtime and providing gear for teachers at other times where needed and coordinating home room sports events.