Amana Christian School: Secondary

Two Bible-based curricula

Amana Christian School provides an excellent education standard, using two Biblically-based curricula infused with Godly character that go beyond simply helping students to achieve a high standard of education.

The base of the curriculum is the attributes of God which is taught in a nondenominational way integrating Biblical studies within a child’s life while still learning the base education courses such as Math, English and the Sciences.

Interact curriculum

Amana uses a curriculum called ‘Interact’ which was founded here in New Zealand but has also migrated to be used in other countries like Australia and South Africa.

The Interact Curriculum has been written and developed in New Zealand for Christian Schools. It has a four-year cycle and is based on sixteen attributes of God, with one a term as the overall theme.
It covers Biblical Studies, Science, Social Studies, English (Oral, Written, Visual), Technology, Health and Art.

The strength of this programme is that the theme provides an integrated approach across the whole school so that activities are easily and logically related to each other with varied learning experiences. There are many opportunities for diverse learning approaches with input from the whole School community and the wider community.

Most of these subjects are presented in the afternoon sessions of the timetable.

It complements the learning of those students using A.C.E.

A.C.E. curriculum

Secondary students use Accelerated Christian Education (A.C.E.) which is an internationally accredited curriculum for university entrance in over 140 countries including New Zealand! It ensures consistent learning.

A.C.E. is a Biblically-based educational programme geared to meet the learning needs of individual children. Students are taught to see life from God’s point of view, to take responsibility for their own learning and to walk in godly wisdom and character. Students are prepared for tomorrow’s world through an ‘extaordinary educational approach, Biblical in its core… while giving them traditional moral values that will last a lifetime.’

The strength of the A.C.E. programme is that it provides students with the opportunity to progress at the level of individual ability. Realistic goals are set, achievement is tested and addressed straight away and progress is tangible. Students become self-motivated as they take on ownership of their own learning.

At present students are being introduced to A.C.E. subjects as they approach Year 7 and Year 8. This provides flexibility to progress beyond a specific year level or to gain a further grounding in weaker areas of learning.

Curriculum approach (from Wikipedia) According to the curriculum section on its website, the A.C.E. “program is individualized and nongraded.” A.C.E. states that its “core curriculum is an individualized, Biblically-based, character-building curriculum package”. The material for the classes has an emphasis reflecting the Christian ideas and principles of the company, including memorising Bible passages and learning creationism.

The program allows students to advance through high school. The A.C.E. curriculum is based on a series of workbooks called PACEs (Packets of Accelerated Christian Education). At the beginning of each PACE is an overview of what the child will be learning, a scripture to memorize, a character trait to strive toward, and a “heads up” on what supplies the student will need. Each subject has 12 PACEs per grade level. The basic subjects of A.C.E. are mathematics, English, science, social studies, bible, Literature & Creative Writing, and word building (spelling and word usage). Test keys are published for corresponding PACEs. Additional PACEs apply.

High School studies

At the High School level the student is able to choose from over 30 elective courses, for example – Art, Bible, Business, Computer Science, Foreign Languages, English Literature, Government and History. This curriculum is currently being used in more than seven thousand Christian schools in over one hundred and thirty countries around the world. It has also been used successfully by thousands of families who have chosen to educate their own children at home. An ever-increasing number of students have graduated and have either entered the workforce successfully or gone on to complete tertiary studies.

A.C.E. offers four certificate levels

The A.C.E. Record of Attainment

Students who are unable to qualify for a High School Certificate may apply for a Record of Attainment. A Record of Attainment is an official record of an individual’s successful completion of specific courses.

The A.C.E. Certificate of Achievement

Students who wish to have the flexibility to choose their subjects, and not be constrained by the requirements of an exit certificate (High School Certificate, and High School Advanced Certificate) may utilise the Certificate of Achievement.

The A.C.E. High School Certificate

This Certificate provides the student with a well-rounded platform either to launch themselves into their chosen vocation or further studies. The High School Certificate is designed to ensure that students have a solid grasp of foundational literacy and numeracy principles as well as a depth and breadth of general knowledge that will enable them to further specialise in future studies.

The A.C.E. High School Advanced Certificate

This Certificate has a large degree of flexibility to ensure that students can structure their learning according to their future career aspirations. This Certificate begins with the standard requirements, however, students can pursue an Endorsement, which ensures that the student has met additional requirements to help prepare themselves for future tertiary studies.

For more information, please visit

A.C.E. and New Zealand universities

The A.C.E. curriculum has been successfully studied by thousands of students in New Zealand since its introduction in 1977, and today it is used by many thousands of Christian Schools and Home Educators throughout the world. A.C.E. is the only Christian based curriculum that has been recognized by the New Zealand Vice-chancellor’s Committee for it’s academic excellence. The A.C.E. Academic Certificate Level 3 is recognised by ALL New Zealand Universities. The New Zealand Vice-Chancellor’s Committee has recognised the A.C.E. Level 3 Certificate with the following statement:

“This is to certify that the Year 13 [ re-named High School Advanced Certificate] of the A.C.E. is accepted by New Zealand Universities for admission ad eundem statum at entrance level. This means that for the purpose of entrance to a university, the qualification is deemed to be equivalent to the officially established common entrance standard in this country.” (click here to see full letter)

Obviously, for entrance to popular courses, the individual’s personal grades will be used to select successful candidates. This is the same for all candidates, regardless of the qualification. The New Zealand A.C.E. Certificates provide entrance qualifications to all institutions throughout NZ. The A.C.E. Academic Certificate High School Advanced Certificate is one of 4 qualifications recognised for entry to NZ Universities. The other three are: N.C.E.A. Level 3, Cambridge Y13, International Baccalaureate Y13.

The New Zealand A.C.E. certificates

A.C.E. offers seven secondary school qualifications based on students gaining credits for work completed at various achievement levels using the A.C.E. curriculum. A.C.E. certificates are available to students throughout the world, with the following currently available to students in New Zealand.

You can find more information about the A.C.E. certificates on the FACENZ website.

Academic certificates

  • High School Advanced Certificate NZ Level 3 (Yr 13 – 24 credits – also includes Honours)
  • High School Certificate NZ Level 2 (Yr 12 – 30 credits – higher subjects)
  • High School Certificate NZ Level 1 (Yr 11 – 30 credits)

Achievement certificates

  • Certificate of Achievement NZ Level 3 (16 credits)
  • Certificate of Achievement NZ Level 2 (12 credits – higher subjects)
  • Certificate of Achievement NZ Level 1 (12 credits)

Record of Attainment

  • Record of Attainment in NZ (10 credits)

It should be noted that these certificates do not comment on the Christian character of the candidate.

Curriculum principles

The curriculum at Amana is based on the following principles:

  • Pointing children to God and glorifying Him
  • Agrees with and upholds Scripture
  • Promotes a true view of God, creation, sin, life, work and marriage
  • Develops good thinking skills
  • Teaching goal setting
  • Finishing tasks
  • Self reliance
  • Social concern.

Key attributes

We believe that the following key attributes are important and are taught to the children:

  • Speak, listen, read, numerate, sing, and paint with all the ability God has given them
  • To love and enjoy God
  • To read the Bible
  • To pray
  • To worship and serve God
  • To love their neighbours
  • To obey and respect lawful authority.

Education Review Office report

The Government’s Education Review Office (E.R.O.) having reviewed Amana and the results of its education method wrote in their report “Consistent with the school’s vision, its special Christian character is central to the school’s curriculum and evident in the way students and staff relate. Students who spoke with ERO were very positive about their school. They described it as safe and friendly and stated that they enjoyed their learning.”