Excursions and incursions
Students are given the opportunity to attend various excursions and incursions during the school year. Aligned to the Australian curriculum, these have been planned to enrich their knowledge of the community and environment.
We provide varied opportunities for our students to make outdoor learning curriculum connections. Students in Years 4, 5 and 6 are involved in our school camping program. The objectives of school camps are to develop leadership skills, social and emotional development and to experience guided, integrated learning across the curriculum in natural environments. Japan Study Tour/Cultural Exchange
- Year Four - Tangalooma & Moreton Island School Camp
This 3 day/2 night camp is geared towards an island environment and is specifically designed to meet curriculum needs. Activities include a dolphin feeding experience, safari tour with sand tobogganing. Students also view educational presentations, with an eco-ranger from the Marine Education and Conservation Centre.
- Year Five - Tyalgum Ridge Retreat
Based around small group interaction, students are encouraged to show personal initiative and leadership in well-planned, challenging outdoor activities over a 4 day/3 night period. Situated in an area of outstanding beauty, the Tweed Caldera invites investigation and encourages students to develop an understanding of the natural processes which are occurring around them.
- Year Six - Canberra Tour
Taking place over 5 days/4 nights, our tour of the national capital gives students an opportunity to experience a variety of educational programs with a focus on Australia's history, culture, heritage and democracy. The tour may include visits to Parliament House, The National Art Gallery, The War Memorial, The Electoral Education Centre, The Australian Institute of Sport, Old Parliament House, The Royal Australian Mint, National Capital Exhibition and Questacon.
Japan Study Tour/Cultural Exchange
Every second year, approximately forty Year 5 and 6 students as well as a group of teachers and parents, are given an opportunity to visit Japan to take part in a long-established cultural exchange program.
Over a two-week period, the study tour includes visits to three cities and a local primary school within each city area.
Where we go and who we connect with:
- Shisho City in Hyōgo Prefecture
Haga Elementary School
The Haga Japan-Australia Friendship Association- The Haga Japan-Australia Friendship Exchange Association (HJA) focuses on the long-standing relationship between Haga Elementary School Parent and Teachers association, the community of Haga and Ironside State School. The aim of the association is to continue fostering our cultural exchange with the hope of not only providing children with broader perspectives and insight, but also cultivating friendships amongst participants.
- Sakai City located in Osaka Prefecture
Tomiokahigashi Elementary School
Sakai-Tomioko Japan-Australia Friendship Exchange Association - Established in 1981, the association aims to encourage the education and cultural exchanges of Japan and Australia, and to promote the friendship of both countries. Parents and teachers of Tomiokahigashi are also encouraged to be involved through a range of activities that help to develop of a global mindset.
- Akashi City located in Hyōgo Prefecture
Kobe University Elementary School
Visits to these cities range from 3-5 days and participants are billeted out with families from each of the three schools. In recent years, the tour group has also visited an area of cultural significance such as Kyoto for 2 nights at the beginning of the tour.
On alternate years, Ironside is visited by each of the three Japanese schools over a three week period with Ironside families and community members billeting participants.
The History Behind Ironside's Japan Study Tour
The Japanese Language and Cultural program began at Ironside with Year 5 pilot class in 1981. The study of Japanese Culture has always been an important part of this program
because it is felt that language cannot be taught in isolation. It was also felt by the teachers of that original group that it would be a wonderful "rounding off" of the pilot program if the pilot class could travel to Japan at the end of Year 7.
With the encouragement of Mrs Mineko Furusawa O.A.M., from the Kobe Japan-Australia Society and her generous offer to plan the tour for Ironside, the first study tour group travelled to Kobe as guests of the Society in 1981. The legacy of Mrs Furasawa's work continues.
The program, now for students in Years 5 and 6, has grown over the years but the purpose of the Study Tours has remained the same:
- to enable students to witness first-hand what they have learned at school
- to immerse them totally in a different culture by living with a Japanese family
- to experience some time in a Japanese school
- to experience and enjoy the ancient and modern aspects of Japanese life
- to identify the similarities and differences of the two cultures
With each passing year, the importance of the growing family ties between billeting families from all three schools has become a strength of the program. Individuals from both countries continue to benefit from the experience.
The exchange of cultural ideas and ways of life has taken the teaching of Japanese at Ironside further to establishing and nurturing international goodwill and understanding between our two nations.