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SciTech

We lcom e to t h e S c i e n c e a n d Te c h n o l o g y K — 6 e-newsletter This e-newsletter is designed to inform and support K—6 teachers in the area of Science and Technology.

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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Inside this issue Contents and Welcome

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Australian Curriculum: Technologies Where to from here?

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The Australian Curriculum: Technologies—a NSW perspective

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Improving Food and Agriculture Education

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Electricity Safety Week

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enviroweek

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National Computer Science School (NCSS) Challenge

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Teacher workshop CUSP

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Resources

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Contact us

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Welcome back to Term 3! In the first week of the holidays Sandra McKee (TAS Advisor 7-12) and I attended the CS4HS Workshop run by the School of IT at Sydney Uni. This Google sponsored educational incentive was fantastic, both as an introduction to programming and for the excellent networking opportunities . Best of all, it was free! Although particularly pitched at high school it was good to gain insight into what will be expected of our year 6 students as they transition into year 7. We only found out about it at the last minute but promise to keep you informed about next year’s event. On a quieter note, the Australian Curriculum: Technologies is now in it’s final stages of development. We should get a look at the next draft in July, there is one last National Panel consultation meeting and a few more tweaks to get it right before it is up for viewing on the ACARA website mid-September. Hopefully we will see a finalised curriculum in December 2013. Where we in NSW go from there will be up to the Minister and the NSW Board of Studies, but I’ll keep you posted!

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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Draft Australian Curriculum: Technologies Where to from here? The draft Australian Curriculum: Technologies consultation concluded in May. ACARA analysed the results of it’s national consultation process, identified areas that needed review and the final stages of writing are now underway. We hope to see the curriculum released in December.

The draft Australian Curriculum: Technologies was released for national consultation on 20 February 2013. It is available for viewing or downloading from the Australian Curriculum consultation website. The NSW Department of Education and Communities conducted extensive consultation with teachers, school leaders, regions, and professional associations. This included a series of videoconferences and focus groups and an on-line survey. In addition, a PowerPoint presentation outlining the main features of the draft curriculum was produced and is still available for use on the Curriculum Support website. The Department’s survey is now closed and the responses have been collated and analysed. Feedback from all sources were incorporated in the Department’s response. The Board of Studies will incorporate our response as part of the final combined NSW response and present this to ACARA in May. Technologies including a timeline of the writing and implementation schedule, can be found on the ACARA website.

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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Draft Australian Curriculum: Technologies Where to from here? Just in case you missed this important information in last term’s edition...

There has been much confusion amongst teachers and school leaders about the draft Australian Curriculum: Technologies—when and how will it be implemented in NSW?. In the memorandum to principals issued by the Board of Studies on 31 July 2012 we were reminded that for all subjects other than the four Phase 1 subjects (English, Mathematics, Science, History) it was “business as usual” until otherwise advised by the BOS. In NSW we will not use the Australian Curriculum directly. We must wait until syllabuses incorporating the Australian Curriculum content are developed by the Board of Studies and approved by the Minister for implementation in NSW schools. That is because The Board of Studies is responsible under the Education Act 1990 for developing the curriculum for Kindergarten to Year 12 in NSW. Courses of study in a key learning area are to be based on, and taught in accordance with, a syllabus developed or endorsed by the Board and approved by the Minister. Education Act 1990 – Part 3 Division 1

Any syllabus developed or endorsed by the Board for a particular course of study is to indicate the aims, objectives and desired outcomes in terms of knowledge and skills that should be acquired by children at various levels of achievement by the end of specified stages in the course, and any practical experience that children should acquire by the end of any such stage. Education Act 1990 Sect 14

In the meantime, we must become familiar with the four new syllabuses through the opportunities offered on the NSW syllabuses for the Australian Curriculum website where you will find courses and resources to support your teaching.

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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Improving Food and Agriculture Education The Australian Council of Educational Research (ACER) survey results found 75% of students thought cotton socks were an animal product and 45% of students could not identify that everyday lunchbox items such as a banana, bread and cheese originated from farms. To help rectify this situation the Federal Government recently committed $1.5 million to agricultural education as part of the National Food Plan to ensure Australian students learn about where their food comes from. The Government program, Food in the Australian Curriculum, will involve the development of education resources which will be linked to the Australian curriculum aimed at informing students of food production, increasing the profile of agriculture among teachers, careers advisors and students, and helping to attract a new generation of young people into agriculture. “Our young students do not have enough of a basic understanding of where their food, clothing and building materials come from.” Primary Industries Education Foundation (PIEF) Chair, Cameron Archer said. On 24 June 2013 The Hon Sid Sidebottom MP, Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry , spoke at the AgriFood Skills Environmental Scan Launch in Canberra and stated: “This Food in the Australian Curriculum initiative will help Australian students understand better where their food and fibre comes from, how it is produced and the important role of food and fibre producers. The initiative will help make help make available new food, fibre and agriculture- related education resources. It will cover primary and secondary subjects, including science, geography, technologies and health and physical education. The goals of the initiative are to: Enhance the teaching of agriculture Attract a new generation of young people into agriculture and related careers Increase the profile of agriculture among teachers, career advisers and students

The initiative will fund: Online and printed curriculum resources Professional development seminars for existing

and trainee teachers

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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Electricity Safety Week

en op w ty no afe s S n tio city a i r Registrations are now open to NSW primary schools to receive a free interactr st gi lec e tive prize pack to help engage their students in Electricity Safety Week (ESW) from R rE fo 9-13 September 2013.

ESW is a state-wide program designed to teach students how to be safe around electricity by raising awareness of the hazards associated with it. Developed with the Department of Education and Communities, the resources offered by Ausgrid, Endeavour Energy and Essential Energy are designed to help teachers meet the Science & Technology and PDHPE curriculums for years K-6. Register your school before Friday, 23 August and you will receive the following items in the interactive prize pack: Activity booklet – electricity safety activities for years K-6 Student prizes – rechargeable torches and electricity safety stickers Electricity safety posters – display these around your school and classrooms Certificate of achievement – photocopy and distribute this to your students Additional items – other exciting teaching and learning resources To complete your registration, please email your name, school, address and preferred email address to esw@primary-pr.com or call 02 9212 3888.

enviroweek 25-31 August This is a great opportunity to promote positive choices for building a sustainable future. See the enviroweek website for information about the challenge.

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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National Computer Science School (NCSS) Challenge The NCSS Challenge is an online programming competition for high school students, run by the School of Information Technologies at the University of Sydney. (There are a number of primary school students from stage 3 who have previously joined the challenge and have been very successful.) The NCSS Challenge will run from Monday the 5th of August to Sunday the 8th of September. Enrolments are now open. The Challenge is unlike any other programming competition because it teaches you how to program as you compete rather than expecting you to be a coder already. Visit the website—there are some excellent teaching resources and ideas and access to the software you’ll need to get you started.

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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Resources Workshop for teachers

When: Saturday 27 July. Where: Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre, 1 Powerhouse Rd, Casula Time: 10am – 4pm. Cost: $70. Information and bookings.

© State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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Resources

Some great activities, resources and teaching ideas from Australian Forest Education Alliance (AFEA) focussing on Australian forests and forestbased

This is definitely worth a look! Some excellent resources from CoolAustralia.org with a focus on energy production and sustainability. Developed to support the Australian Curriculum—be careful to ensure you pick and choose in line with NSW syllabus content.

Š State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013


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We would love you to join us on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/technologies.curriculum

Science and Technology curriculum contacts: Tanya Coli

tanya.coli@det.nsw.edu.au

Yvonne Hughes

yvonne.hughes@det.nsw.edu.au

The non-DEC products and events listed in this eNewsletter are to be used at the reader’s discretion. The inclusion of product and event information is not an endorsement by the DEC.

Š State of New South Wales, Department of Education and Communities, 2013

Scitechtalk t3 2013  

DEC e-newsletter to support K-6 teachers in Science and Technology.

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