Year 9 Courses


Our curriculum in the junior school is driven by rich questions. Students have the opportunity to explore writers’ and filmmakers’ complex ideas around concepts including but not limited to identity, change, sustainability and social justice, and to develop the skills to express their ideas in their speech and their writing. Our students are exposed to a wide range of New Zealand texts to give them a critical understanding of Māori, Pasifika and Pākehā cultures and allow them to discover their place in our society.


Our junior curriculum includes classes in both Physical Education and Health Scienes. In this time you will learn why physical activity is important for your well-being, and learn to make informed decisions about issues that relate to your health and wellness. You will also discuss issues related to your friendships and relationships with others and explore a number of topics ranging from personal care, to self-esteem, to keeping ourselves safe. You will be given strategies for how to play games successfully and how to work positively and build relationships with others in your team. You will take part in an interactive learning programme that will challenge you to participate in a wide range of health-related group and individual activities. You will acquire the techniques used in a number of physical activities. Our health programme aims to teach initiative, problem-solving skills and leadership skills.

High Performance Sports

Our High Performance Sport Kāhui Kaupapa allows you to take your sporting ability to the next level, filtering all your learning through your passion for sport and activity.

Through a combination of theory and practical sessions you will learn about fitness and conditioning the importance of training and how to train for your sport, injury prevention and treatment information, the right nutrition for an adolescent sportsperson, and goal setting for all aspects of your life.

Criteria for Entry

  • A proven level of success in sport to date (ideally Hawke’s Bay representation, placing in a Hawke’s Bay Competition).
  • A positive attitude, commitment and appropriate behaviour, both in sport and in class.
  • A sustained high level of academic focus and effort school-wide.
  • A 90% attendance rate.

An application form must be completed with the enrolment. If accepted, a contract will be signed by the student and one parent.


Our curriculum focusses on developing skills needed to be successful thinkers and problem solvers heading into NCEA and beyond. Differentiated learning allows students to develop at their speed. Authentic situations for learning Maths, e.g. ‘Going Flatting’ or Mathematics in Nature provide meaningful contexts for lasting, engaged learning.

Performing Arts

The Junior Performing Arts curriculum in Year 9 and 10 has a practical focus. Learning is all about engaging the mind, body and emotions to better understand individual and cultural voice, developing a lifelong passion for the Performing Arts. All Year 9 students will have the opportunity to trial drama and music before choosing to focus on one area for extension.

In Year 9 Music you have the opportunity to:

  • develop basic to intermediate guitar skills so that you can play in a small group and accompany either yourself or another singer.
  • develop basic to intermediate keyboard skills, learning chords, basic two-handed pieces and how to accompany a singer.
  • play solo and basic ensemble music using a range of instruments, including drums, individual and classroom instruments.
  • develop vocal skills through dramatic technique and singing.

Drama in Years 9 and 10 has a practical focus. It is all about discovering what kind of ‘voice’ you have as a performer and theatre participant off-stage and on-stage. You do not need to be a performer to be involved in Drama and there are many creative and interesting off-stage parts of the performance world in which you could participate. You will learn the key skills of collaboration and effective group work, creative and critical thinking, problem-solving, innovation, confidence and creative expression.

Practically, you will be given the opportunity to use drama techniques to perform a character or role; perform in an excerpt from a script; devise and perform a drama piece; write scripts; and learn about production skills through practical workshops in makeup and design, costumes, lighting, sets, props and sound.

You will also come to understand the features of different theatre genres and types and use these features in performance, gain an understanding of the importance of dramatic elements and conventions; learn about the different roles and jobs in the performance world, theatre and film; and interview and meet music industry professionals to learn how drama and production skills are applied to creative industries.


Our junior curriculum is about developing young scientists who have a passion for discovery, problem-solving and scientific enquiry through hands-on laboratory activities. Students generate and test ideas, gather evidence by making observations and carry out investigations. Students will engage with the Nature of Science through a range of concepts from Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Earth and Space Science. Our Science Department aims to encourage students to enjoy and excel at Science as well as instilling a sense of appreciation and responsibility for our environment.

Social Science

Our junior curriculum covers a number of subjects taught throughout the junior school. Through multimedia lessons you will explore significant issues in society gaining a critical under-standing of the world around you. Starting with local and national issues you will explore differing perspectives that will enable you to participate in society and be an active citizen. Students get a taster of the different areas of learning that make up the Social Sciences, and learn the skills to enable them to study Classical Studies, History, Geography, Business Studies, Pasifika Studies and Psychology in the senior school. New Zealand History is at the forefront in the junior programme and all students conduct an in-depth study of Te Tiriti O Waitangi.


Junior students can opt for a place in the Design and Innovation Kāhui Kaupapa, or be part of the wider Junior Technology programme. Studying technology subjects gives you tools to become an innovator in our changing world. You will begin to develop skills and understanding as a technologist so that you can be a creator of technology.

You will choose two areas of technology that you wish to pursue out of the following options:

Product Design
This is a combination of Design and Visual Communication and Hard Materials. Students will develop skills in three-dimensional design and learn techniques to communicate these visually. Students will also have opportunities to develop skills using a laser cutter, 3D printers and a range of tools and equipment in the workshop.

Food Products
Students will work collaboratively to create food products. They will develop practical skills through the production of a range of products.

Digital Products
Students will try out a range of digital technologies such as animation, 3D modelling and augmented reality. You will begin to develop skills and understanding of how different software and hardware systems work.

Textile Products
Develop textile and fashion related skills and knowledge. Try out a range of different textile techniques such as felting and weaving, learn to use the sewing machine, read patterns and manipulate materials to create new items.

Te Reo Māori Me Ona Tikanga / Spanish

All Year 9 students have the opportunity to study Te Reo Māori Me Ona Tikanga either as a full year course or as a 6 month course alongside Spanish. Students wishing to pursue Te Reo Māori Me Ona Tikanga through their years at school should take the full year course.

Te Reo Māori Me Ona Tikanga

Our junior curriculum teaches ākonga a range of phrases you can use every day. You will learn about, and participate in, customs at the heart of knowing what it means to be Māori including haka, waiata and karakia you can use for any occasion. You also have the opportunity to experience Māori Performing Arts as part of your Performing Arts block and spend time on a marae as part of cross-curricular learning.

Students choosing the 6 month course will be introduced to both Te Reo Māori Me Ona Tikanga and Spanish during this time.


Studying Spanish at Hastings Girls’ is an opportunity to learn a new language and explore a new culture. You will learn to listen, speak, read and write about a variety of relevant, useful topics. You will discover a wealth of new cultures from the broad Spanish-speaking world, and research projects on different cultural topics. You will be supported in your learning by a specialist Spanish speaker and online resources. This junior course builds towards success at NCEA Spanish. Students can take Spanish at NCEA Level 1, 2 and 3 through Te Kura with support from a specialist language speaker on staff.

Visual Arts

Our Visual Arts curriculum is designed for everyone to develop their visual awareness and explore their passion and identity whilst learning new skills, developing existing skills and refining technique to achieve goals. You will gain a range of skills that will equip you for life and inform your future pathways and life choices, whether they be artistic or not. The tools and techniques learned in Year 9 & 10 Visual Arts allow you to continue into senior level Visual Arts: Design, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture and Art History.