Katoomba High School

Quality and Creativity

Telephone02 4782 2622

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In NSW high schools, languages is a key learning area.

Language study allows students to develop communication skills, learn about languages as systems and explore the relationship between language and culture. Students engage with the linguistic and cultural diversity of societies and reflect on their understanding of social interactions.

The study of a language is compulsory for 100 hours in one continuous school year from Year 7 to Year 10, and at Katoomba High School students complete this in Year 7 with Years 8, 9 and 10 offered as electives in the junior years.

In Years 11 and 12, NSW schools offer a wide variety of languages, catering for beginning students to background speakers.

Japanese culture and language is interesting, exciting and fascinating to study! With the Japanese language is among the top 10 languages spoken in the world and Japanese culture having a large influence on popular culture throughout the world!

Learning a language opens up a whole world of cultural experiences and is a valuable part of our students' education.

Learning a new language allows us to celebrate difference and diversity and it is a wonderful opportunity to help us to understand how people from other cultures interact with the world.

In Japanese, we not only have fun learning a new language, we also enjoy learning about the culture, religion, history, dress, music, food and cooking of Japan and observe the influences this culture has on popular culture in modern society.

Learning another language helps us to understand how language works, and many students develop a more sophisticated understanding of the English language which helps to improve literacy skills.

The study of Japanese provides students with knowledge, understanding and skills that form a valuable foundation for a range of courses at university and other tertiary institutions.  There are opportunities for future employment and experience in areas such as education, public relations, commerce, hospitality, marketing, international relations, media and tourism.

We learn how language works through many fun activities such as:

  • making films
  • writing and acting in plays
  • conducting interviews
  • creating role-plays
  • creating blogs
  • listening and responding to advertisements, announcements, messages, conversations, news items and emails
  • reading extracts from magazines
  • watching films and TV shows in Japanese
  • producing different kinds of writing such as articles, diary entries, letters and postcards.

All students studying Japanese at Katoomba High School have the option of studying Japanese as an elective in Stage 4, Stage 5 and Stage 6.

We currently have a Year 8, 9 and 10 electives running in the junior years. Senior students are also able to study Japanese with both the Beginner and Continuers courses on offer!

The following information is from the NSW Syllabus for the Australian Curriculum, Japanese K - 10 Syllabus:


Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

Communicating Strand

Students use language for communicative purposes by:

  • interacting - exchanging information, ideas and opinions, and socialising, planning and negotiating
  • accessing and responding - obtaining, processing and responding to information through a range of spoken, written, digital and/or multimodal texts
  • composing - creating spoken, written, bilingual and/or multimodal texts.

Understanding Strand

Students analyse and understand language and culture by:

  • systems of language - understanding the language system including sound, writing, grammar and text structure; and how language changes over time and place
  • the role of language and culture - understanding and reflecting on the role of language and culture in the exchange of meaning, and considering how interaction shapes communication and identity.

The Communicating and Understanding strands are interdependent and one or more of the objectives may be emphasised at any given time, depending on the language and the Stage of learning.

Values and Attitudes


  • develop an interest in and enjoyment of language learning
  • appreciate and value their own heritage, culture and identity
  • appreciate and respect the culture, beliefs and values of others through language learning.

Organisation of Content

The above diagram provides an illustrative representation of elements of the course and their relationship.


The content of the syllabus is organised through the two interrelated strands of Communicating and Understanding, and related objectives and outcomes.

The strands reflect important aspects of language learning related to communication, analysis and understanding of language and culture, and reflection.  Students reflect on the experience of communicating and on their own language and culture in comparison to those of others.

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