This year, instead of a state conference in March as would normally be the case, ICTENSW hosted a planning and programming retreat at Winbourne the Edmund Rice Conference Centre in Mulgoa. It was even more popular than we anticipated and the feedback from attendees was overwhelmingly positive with 100% of respondents suggesting they would recommend to others.
The retreat began on Friday evening with arrivals and checking and then a sharing session after dinner where all attendees could voice their concerns with the implementation of the new NSW syllabus and set goals for the weekend.
Saturday kicked off with a session run by the wonderful Chris Woldhuis and Kelly Bauer outlining a Persona driven, Project-Based Learning focused Unit planning paradigm to guide the attendees in their objective for the day. Then we broke into groups along stage lines - with groups for both IPT and SDD and started to put together units of work around the outcomes. Stage 3 and 4 focused on the new curriculum and unpacking what was actually required.
Saturday night we relaxed with board and card games and got to know each other a bit better outside the context of the work we were doing.
Sunday was a short day where each of the groups shared their outcomes of the weekend and the committee is tidying up and categorising resources to share back to the membership.
I was very impressed with the dedication of the teachers who gave up their weekend to help others get their heads around difficult content and plan interesting units. We hope to run more retreats like it in the future.
© ICTENSW 2016
ICTENSW is a non-profit professional association supporting teachers in New South Wales.ICTENSW Suite 1A Level 2 802 Pacific Highway