Australian Professional Standards for Teachers

A creative space

About this Illustration of Practice

A teacher at a remote school in the Kimberley describes her aims in teaching kindergarten students. In one of her classes she begins the lesson with a group activity, then subsequently supports individual and group learning activities. She is able to maintain a differentiated learning environment where learners are constructing a castle from a large box, while another group composes and presents a puppet play. She moves around the room, encouraging persistence, modelling roles and celebrating achievements. The teacher reflects on her personal philosophy for teaching young children and on what individuals and groups of students have learned.

Standard 1
Know students and how they learn
Focus area 1.1
Physical, social and intellectual development and characteristics of students
Career stage
Use teaching strategies based on knowledge of students’ physical, social and intellectual development and characteristics to improve student learning.
Other descriptors
Standard 4
Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments
Focus area 4.2
Manage classroom activities
Career stage
Establish and maintain orderly and workable routines to create an environment where student time is spent on learning tasks.
  1. How might you enrich opportunities for creativity and problem solving in your classroom?
  2. How do you foster independence, self-direction and motivation for students to stay on task?
  3. How can you tell what students have learned through independent creative play?
Learning area
Year level
Australian Curriculum content descriptions
St Mary's College (Primary)
Western Australia
Year level
Early Childhood
Stage of schooling
School type
Non Government
School location
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St Mary's is a co-educational kindergarten to year 12 Catholic College situated in Broome in the Kimberley region. The school has 650 students across two campuses. In the Primary School, the teacher has two kindergarten groups with 30 students in each group. Her priorities for students’ learning in the kindergarten year are: the development of emotional and social skills, building creativity, and the confidence and dispositions to take risks and problem solve. Within her program, the teacher provides rich opportunities for self-directed learning as children work in different areas of the room. The emphasis is on the process, rather than the product. Students are self-motivated and demonstrate independence and productive engagement with tasks.

Content provider
Early Childhood Australia (ECA)

© Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL), 2012 (except where indicated under acknowledgements). You may use, reproduce and adapt this material for educational purposes until 30 June 2019, provided you retain this notice and all acknowledgements associated with the material.