First students visit The Retreat Kangaroo Valley

Student day trips to our new property The Retreat Kangaroo Valley have begun. 

On Monday and Tuesday this week Year 12 English students enjoyed the opportunity to visit The Retreat Kangaroo Valley and explore and immerse in an English learning experience as part of the IGS in Nature strategic vision.

Students travelled to The Retreat, just two hours from our Ultimo campus, in minibuses and then divided into class groups for a tour of the property, followed by a creative writing lesson as part of their Module C: Craft of Writing, HSC unit.

The minibuses then conveyed the group a short distance into Kangaroo Valley Village where our students explored the local area. 

Students and staff alike enjoyed the day and are eager to return to The Retreat. 

“It was so lovely to see the first group of students respond to The Retreat. It was a beautiful crisp and sunny day. The valley looked stunning in all its shimmering verdancy and students drew inspiration from their surrounds to write, contemplate, breathe and imagine. Not to mention some students, who took to the vintage piano on the streets of Kangaroo Valley Village to offer an impromptu concert and entertain the locals. It was such a special day and one that we will all remember,” said Head of English Susie Bolt.

“What was most exciting about the trip to Kangaroo Valley was having the ability to see a place which has so much potential. The Retreat is clearly an amazing opportunity for IGS students in the future. So many memories are going to be made in that spot, and I’m really grateful we got to see the beginnings of that process,” said Year 12 student Lucy Gardiner. Fellow Year 12 student Iris Hancock commented, “As Year 12 students, so much of our time is spent inside studying in the classroom, at home, at the library… so to get out of the city into such a beautiful natural environment was a breath of fresh air for us. As we near the end of our time at IGS, it feels particularly special that we got to do that as a year group. These are the kinds of unique experiences we will remember for years to come.”

Year 12 are already talking about future multi-day trips to The Retreat. They are so keen on The Retreat that wild suggestions even include having ‘Schoolies’ there! In fact, there is so much enthusiasm for the site that we are already fielding questions about making The Retreat available for Alum weddings.

Discussions are underway for The Retreat to host language immersion camps, geography, science and sustainability field studies, outdoor education, Shakespeare in the Glade, music camps, writers’ retreats, art en plein air, leadership programs, HSC study camps and so much more.

We are looking forward to more students visiting The Retreat in the coming months. Year 11 will be visiting next week and it is our vision that every IGS student every year will spend time at the School’s bush campus and enjoy the greenery, tall trees, fresh air, mob of kangaroos and other wildlife, wide open spaces and natural bushland.

“It will be a place where memories are made for this and the next generations of IGS students during their formative years,” said IGS Principal Shauna Colnan.

Please enjoy the galleries below.