Resources and support for implementing the Australian Curriculum
The time for familiarisation and engagement with the Australian Curriculum has arrived.
Late last year, Australian education ministers endorsed the content for P–10 English, mathematics, science and history. The approved curriculum should be used for future curriculum planning by all Australian schools.
As a minimum during 2011, Queensland schools should take the time to become familiar with the approved curriculum. This is an important preliminary step to teaching, assessing and reporting using the Australian Curriculum in English, mathematics and science in 2012, and history in 2013.
Schools intending to start using the Australian Curriculum this year should develop their school curriculum using the recently-approved Australian Curriculum and the QSA-developed resources outlined below. In combination, these materials will enable schools to teach, assess and report with the new curriculum.
Transitioning to a new curriculum is always challenging but Queensland teachers can be reassured that working with the Australian Curriculum is similar to working with the Essential Learnings and Standards. This is because in both there is clarity about what must be taught.
Using the QSA website for all curriculum, assessment and reporting materials
In 2011, teachers will need to use materials from different sources to develop their curriculum for each year level, including:
- the new Australian Curriculum located on the national website
- the companion materials developed by QSA in collaboration with school sectors:
- advice and guidelines for assessment and reporting
- support resources including exemplars and templates.
- Early Years Curriculum Guidelines, Essential Learnings and Standards and Year 10 Guidelines for learning areas not yet covered by the Australian Curriculum.
All essential materials for implementing the new curriculum are available from a single source – QSA's website. This site is a must for all Queensland teachers implementing the Australian Curriculum in 2011 or planning for 2012.
At the QSA website, teachers can access all the necessary information either by learning area or by year level. There is also information about how QSA is working with the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) to transition to the Australian Curriculum, including updates on the development of the senior secondary courses and other P–10 learning areas, and opportunities for involvement in consultation activities.
Additional support is available from individual schooling sectors. Education Queensland, for example, provides all state school teachers with access to essential and supporting resources via the Roadmap for P–10 curriculum, teaching, assessment and reporting resource lists. Non-state schools may also access resource materials via Scootle.
QSA resources to assist schools
From late last year, QSA has been working closely with teacher focus groups and schooling sector personnel to develop resources schools require for implementing the new curriculum.
- general advice for whole school, year level and unit overview planning
- templates for whole school, year level and unit overview planning
- exemplars to support whole school and year level planning in English and mathematics P–10
- exemplars of unit overviews for English and mathematics P–10
- curriculum audit tools.
- mapping Australian Curriculum and Queensland Curriculum
- multi-age planning templates and exemplars for English and mathematics
- science exemplars for whole school, year level and unit overview planning
- history exemplars for whole school, year level and unit overview planning.
Users of these resources will soon be able to provide feedback via QSA's website.
These resources will remain in draft for most of 2011. They will be revised based on feedback from schools and the outcome of ACARA's national achievement standards validation process. Later in 2011, final drafts will be released to support effective school planning for teaching, assessing and reporting using the Australian Curriculum in 2012.
Other complementary resources being developed by QSA include advice on assessment, the use of standards, and how to work with the Australian and Queensland curriculums.
Face-to-face opportunities to learn more from QSA
Teachers can learn more about the recently-developed QSA resources and receive valuable advice on implementing the Australian Curriculum by attending professional development workshops offered throughout 2011.
In Terms 1 and 2, QSA is delivering mini-conferences for:
- school leaders focusing on strategies for planning and implementation, and also for managing curriculum change in schools
- teachers focusing on using the new curriculum and QSA-developed resources to support implementation.
For teachers unable to participate in these events, a suite of self-paced professional development modules will be developed and made available on QSA's website in Term 3. This online professional development program will be supported by a range of resources, including PowerPoint presentations, facilitator's notes, handouts, activities, podcasts/vodcasts and webinars.