Course Guide

The Curriculum Guide provides students and families with information regarding the learning programs offered at Valley View Secondary School and specific Course Descriptions of subjects within these programs.

Students and families are encouraged to explore the Curriculum Guide to plan possible options and pathways of study. It should be used in conjunction with subject selection processes and Course Confirmation interviews.

Australian Curriculum


Mathematics aims to ensure that students are confident, creative users and communicators of mathematics, able to investigate, represent and interpret situations in their personal and work lives and as active citizens develop an increasingly sophisticated understanding of mathematical concepts and fluency with processes. Students are able to pose and solve problems and reason in number and algebra, measurement and geometry, statistics and probability and recognise connections between the areas of mathematics and other disciplines and appreciate mathematics as an accessible and enjoyable discipline to study.


English aims to ensure that students learn to listen, read, view, speak, write, create and reflect on increasingly complex and sophisticated spoken, written and multi-modal texts across a growing range of contexts with accuracy, fluency and purpose to appreciate, enjoy and use the English language in all its variations. Students will develop a sense of its richness and power to convey information, form ideas, facilitate interaction with others, entertain, persuade and argue.  Students understand how Standard Australian English works in its spoken and written forms and in combination with non-linguistic forms of communication to create meaning, develop interest and skills in inquiring into the aesthetic aspects of texts, and develop an informed appreciation of literature.


The Australian Curriculum in Science provides opportunities for students to develop an understanding of important science concepts and processes, the practices used to develop scientific knowledge, of science’s contribution to our culture and society, and its applications in our lives.  It provides an understanding of scientific inquiry methods, a foundation of knowledge across the disciplines of science, and develops an ability to communicate scientific understanding and use evidence to solve problems and make evidence-based decisions.  The curriculum supports students to develop the scientific knowledge, understandings and skills to make informed decisions about local, national and global issues and to participate, if they so wish, in science-related careers. The AC in Science leads to senior secondary subjects of Biology, Chemistry, Earth and Environmental Science and Physics.


The Australian Curriculum in Technologies draws together the distinct but related subjects of Design and Technologies, and Digital Technologies.  It ensures that all students benefit from learning about, and working with, traditional, contemporary and emerging technologies that shape the world in which we live.  In creating solutions, as well as responding to the designed world, students will contribute to sustainable patterns of living for themselves and others.  Technologies describes two distinct but related subjects:

Design and Technologies, in which students use design thinking and technologies to generate and produce designed solutions for authentic needs and opportunities.

Digital Technologies, in which students use computational thinking and information systems to define, design and implement digital solutions.

The Arts

In the Australian Curriculum, “The Arts” is a learning area that draws together related but distinct art forms.  While these art forms have close relationships and are often used in interrelated ways, each involves different approaches to arts practices and critical and creative thinking that reflect distinct bodies of knowledge, understanding and skills.  The curriculum examines past, current and emerging arts practices in each art form across a range of cultures and places.  The Arts comprises five subjects:

  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Media Arts
  • Music
  • Visual Arts

The arts have the capacity to engage, inspire and enrich all students, exciting the imagination and encouraging them to reach their creative and expressive potential.  The five arts subjects in the Australian Curriculum provide opportunities for students to learn how to create, design, represent, communicate and share their imagined and conceptual ideas, emotions, observations and experiences.


Languages is designed to enable all students to engage in learning a language in addition to English.  The design of the Languages recognises the features that languages share as well as the distinctiveness of specific languages.  The key concepts of language, culture and learning, as described in the Shape of the Australian Curriculum: Languages, underpin the learning area. They also provide the basis for a common rationale and set of aims for all languages.  Each language has its own distinctive structure, systems, conventions for use, related culture(s), place in the Australian and international communities, as well as its own history in Australian education.

Learners of languages in Australia comprise three major groups:

  • second language learners
  • background language learners
  • first language learners.

Health and Physical Education

Health and Physical Education offers experiential learning, with a curriculum that is relevant, engaging, contemporary, physically active, enjoyable and developmentally appropriate. Integral to Health and Physical Education is the acquisition of movement skills, concepts and strategies that enable students to participate in a range of physical activities confidently and competently. In Health and Physical Education, students develop the knowledge, understanding and skills to support them to be resilient, to develop a strong sense of self, to build and maintain satisfying relationships, to make health-enhancing decisions in relation to their health and physical activity participation, and to develop health literacy competencies in order to enhance their own and others’ health and wellbeing.

Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS)

The Australian Curriculum in Humanities and Social Sciences includes: HASS, Civics and Citizenship, Economics and Business, Geography and History. The Civics and Citizenship curriculum is all about ensuring students have the skills and values to become active and informed citizens.  Students will investigate political and legal systems, and explore the nature of citizenship, diversity and identity in contemporary society.

The Economics and Business curriculum explores aspects of economics and business that affect daily life. Students will learn about the role that individuals, businesses and governments play in the economy, the way they make decisions about how to allocate resources and the effects of these decisions.

The Geography curriculum provides opportunities for students to investigate, analyse and explain the characteristics of the places that make up our world.

The Australian Curriculum in History provides opportunities for students to investigate Australian and world history.  Australian history is to be taught within a world history context.  Students develop knowledge, understanding and skills through their study of societies, events, movements and developments.  There are opportunities to study the role of individuals and groups and their significance.


What is the SACE?

The South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) is a modern, internationally-recognised secondary school qualification designed to equip students with the skills, knowledge, and personal capabilities to successfully participate in our fast-paced global society. Typically, students complete their SACE at the end of Year 12 with a view to embark on a job, trade or tertiary pathway.

Valley View Secondary School offers a range of subjects in Stage 1 (Year 11) and Stage 2 (Year 12) to ensure students have access to the pre-requisites required to access their desired pathway. These include:

  • Advanced Mathematics (including Specialist and Methods)
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • English
  • Women’s Studies
  • Society and Culture
  • Business and Enterprise
  • History
  • Visual Arts
  • Creative Arts
  • Performing Arts
  • Material Technology
  • Health and Physical Education
  • Food and Hospitality

For a full list of subject offerings please refer to our Curriculum Guide.

If you are a student about to embark on your SACE studies, or want to know more about the SACE, the Welcome to the SACE Student Guide can help you


Vocational Education & Training.


At Valley View Secondary School we are re-imagining the Mathematics curriculum to support our students to engage with a learning program that deepens their understanding of mathematical relationships that can be observed.

Students will engage with rich, open-ended problems in a collaborative manner to develop their understanding of mathematical formulae and how they can be applied to solve real-world problems.  They will work within these teams to communicate the steps that have led them to their conclusions, strengthening their mathematical reasoning skills, in addition to their literacy capabilities.

As a teaching team, we are striving to challenge our students to develop a repertoire of problem-solving strategies that can be applied to a variety of contexts.  We are developing learning programs that support our students’ numeracy capabilities through targeted intervention and consistent processes that support students to recognise numeracy in a variety of contexts in their learning.


At Valley View Secondary School we focus on delivering a diverse and engaging English curriculum, covering a wide range of topics and skills, to expand students’ worlds. They interact with a range of topics, texts and authors to maximise exposure to diverse voices and experiences, developing skills to read, analyse, interpret, compose, speak and listen in a wide range of situations.

We explicitly assess and teach reading as a core skill, especially in the beginning years. English staff lead this focus, which is supported by a whole school focus on reading development. Students become highly competent readers and experience growth in their comprehension.

Our teaching spaces are colourful, engaging, energetic spaces where passionate teachers share their love of language and expertise on communication in a range of contexts with students. We ensure teaching and learning is evolving and is never stagnant, reflecting the dynamic way in which we communicate in this modern world.  Students engage with online texts, digital media and use media technology while still being exposed to classic texts which still resonate today.  A love of language and communication is fostered in every student.


At Valley View Secondary School our Science curriculum aims to develop in students the skills, knowledge and attitudes which enable success in the workforce of today and tomorrow, and to contribute positively within our changing society.

Engaging Science programs and innovative activities offer students opportunities to work collaboratively and to link practical experiences with real-world scientific issues, portraying the true, broad nature of Science as drawing upon the knowledge and skills from many areas of life. With a focus on inquiry processes, students will become independent learners and develop the critical and creative thinking skills required for sound problem-solving ability. Students participate in investigations that challenge them to imagine and pose questions, develop processes that can be used to solve problems, and explain their observations. They have the opportunity to work alongside visiting experts from research and industry. A range of extra-curricular activities are offered, including excursions, careers expos and competitions.

We recently had several students who attended the annual South Australian Space School Camp, which was a very exciting opportunity for participants. Students have the opportunity to apply for participation in the off-campus STEM Sista/Mista program, a week-long experience that develops study and life skills, and introduces students to STEM careers and professionals. Students show-off their knowledge in the annual Big Science Competition, with many achieving well, receiving credits and distinctions for their efforts.


At Valley View Secondary School we focus on delivering a diverse and engaging Technologies curriculum.  Students have the opportunity to develop their skills in a range of subjects including Design Technologies & Engineering, Digital Technologies and Food Technologies. This includes working in the schools technologies workshop, the electronics lab as well as in our newly refurbished hospitality centre.  Students also have the opportunity to develop their barista skills, which is an embedded part of our program.

Within the Design Technologies subject area students build on a range of skills including computer based, inventor, wood and metalwork as well as jewellery making.  Exciting programs include running a specific Pedal Prix class and a Year 10 Engineering subject focused on building go-karts.  Digital Technologies which focuses on electronics and computer based skills allows students to develop their knowledge of computer coding whilst software such as Arduino.


  • What we do and what makes our teaching and learning program stand out?
    • At Valley View Secondary School we deliver a diverse Arts program, including Visual and Creative Arts, Dance, Drama, Music as well as Media.
  • Highlight and celebrate our point/s of difference.
    • Our goal is to challenge students to become creative and critical thinkers by providing them with a range of diverse learning opportunities within the arts to allow them to reach their highest potential.
  • What are we striving to achieve and develop?
    • Students have the opportunity to be involved in VVSS’s annual Musical Production, taking on roles of performers, lighting and sound technicians, makeup artists, costume designers and stage crew. They also have the option to participate in “School’s Challenge”, a new performing arts event that sees students perform at the Adelaide Convention Centre.
  • What are examples of innovative learning?
    • Students respond to art through a range of mediums, providing them with pathways to create their own.
    • Year 10 Visual Art students are working on a mural development that new classes add to every year. As of the end of 2019, the mural has already reached 100 square meters, and still growing.
    • Visual Art students in 2020 participated in the Fringe 2020 Exhibition” at the new Salisbury Community Hub.  VVSS put on a standalone art show, featuring work based on the diamond, coinciding with the Fringe’s 60th anniversary.  As part of their involvement with the Fringe, students also did an installation at “Salisbury Secret Garden”.


At Valley View Secondary School we focus on the delivery of the Italian language and see this as a critical component of developing students’ inter-cultural understandings in a rapidly evolving societal landscape.

As of 2022, depending on COVID travel restrictions, we will be taking 12 students and 2 teachers to engage in a cultural immersion program in Italy for 10 days.  This experience will take place bi-annually with an Italian sister school in Prada.  This connection supports our students to develop a deeper appreciation and understanding of the Italian culture and language.

In studying languages, students develop their communication and their inter-cultural skills as they engage with the language and culture, create connections and the attributes necessary for successful participation and engagement within and across local, regional and global communities.

Learning an additional language is key to developing critical thinking skills and developing an openness and inclusive understandings of their world, not from a single perspective of their own first language and culture, but from the multiple perspectives gained through the study of an additional language and culture.  Learning a different language can provide a strengthened sense of identity.

Language is central to literacy.  It equips students with the necessary multi-literacy skills for interpreting and shaping meaning in different contexts.

By engaging students in inter-cultural perspectives and language, we also holistically develop the young person’s lifelong learning skills.  These skills are necessary for further education and employment as they enable students to be ready to successfully meet the challenges of the changing world.

Health & Physical Education

At Valley View Secondary School, we use a strength based approach, value effort and deliver a diverse and engaging HPE curriculum that promotes physical, social and emotional health and fitness with a focus on:

  • being healthy, safe and active
  • communicating and interacting for health and wellbeing
  • contributing to healthy and active communities

Students participate in a wide variety of activities for example: Archery, Athletics, Australian Football, Badminton, Basketball, European Handball, Fitness, Football, Futsal, Golf, Hockey, Pilates, Softball, Table Tennis, Tennis, Touch, Volleyball and Yoga.

Senior students have opportunities to gain coaching and refereeing accreditations leading to jobs in the health and sporting industries.

Students develop and use strategies to promote a sense of personal identity and well-being and to build and maintain respectful relationships.

Students evaluate information to take positive action to protect, enhance and advocate for their own and others’ health, well-being, safety and physical activity participation across their lifespan.

Assessment focuses on the analysis and self-review of their understanding of physical movement and development, theory and healthy lifestyles.  Communication, cooperation and feedback are integrated throughout to develop students as self-directed learners.

HPE prides itself on providing students opportunities to engage with local primary schools through coaching, umpiring and supporting various events.

Humanities & Social Sciences

At Valley View Secondary School we focus on delivering a diverse and engaging in HASS curriculum where students work with staff who are passionate about their curriculum, and are inspired to participate in local, national, and world issues.

An Indigenous voice perspective is embedded across our curriculum, with explicit teaching and learning of the connections between history and current events.

We inspire students to be compassionate, critical thinkers and active participants for change in their community; Foster a life-long interest in world events and their impact on current and future events

Tasks are developed to move students from passive learning to higher order thinking through immersion in curriculum; Group and independent research gives students a voice to challenge and articulate their learning.