Class based STEM activities integrated into teaching programs at BPS include:
- Tournament of Minds
- Mousetrap Car Challenge
- Robotics kits
- Coding as part of IT
Cudgen Primary have rotations each term where students will do STEM based activities for an hour per week for 2-3 weeks. In addition, smaller groups of 6-8 students are chosen specifically to take part in STEM based learning for two hours each week, per term.
The goal is to incorporate more STEM learning into all classrooms for all students through Project Based Learning and Science & Tech units.
- WeDo Lego and Dash Robots as part of the StemShare Kits used for Term 4
- Makey Makey and Newspaper Tower used as activities during STEM rotations across 3-6
- Cardboard Arcade Machine used for Stage 3 Project Based Learning activity
- Mousetrap Car used by Year 5 for the Challenge at Kingscliff High
Kingscliff Public School uses STEM as an approach to learning and development that integrates the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. By integrating STEM across learning areas and year groups, students are given opportunities to develop the keys skills of:
- Problem solving
- Critical analysis
- Independent learning
- Digital literacy
Teachers actively engage students in authentic and challenging learning experiences, creating learning environments that foster innovation and creativity.
The school fosters teacher professional learning of STEM and future focused learning. Teachers enable students to become critical and creative users of digital technologies using an inquiry model of learning.
Early Stage 1 STEAM activities provide students with the opportunity to explore, experiment, collaborate, solve problems and find solutions. Fun, open ended activities are engaging, challenging and develop critical thinking skills.
Stage 1 Stage 1 classes have access to ipads and have been experimenting with using coding apps. Year 1 have been working with Daisy Dinosaur and A.L.E.X. These programs have been challenging and have tested students critical thinking skills through coding. Year 2 have been working with ScratchJr and developing further on their coding skills. The school has adopted some very clever BeeBots and have loved the challenge of these. Students coded the Beebots through pathways using directional language.
Stage 2 students have been involved in a new Critical and Creative Thinking project ‘Plants in Action’. Students were set the task of growing a wide variety of plants inside a terrarium beginning from the seeds. They had to systematically research, design, create and modify their projects using the Six Thinking Caps and Seven Dispositions. The project aimed to teach and develop the skills of collaboration, problem solving, communication, creativity and reflection.
In Stage 3 Year 5 students were practising their critical and creative thinking skills through the marshmallow catapult challenge, they enjoyed testing their catapults against other catapults in the large Year 5 catapult challenge!
6 Isa Brown chickens have been introduced to our school after much investigating and planning by both students and teachers. We investigated breeds suitable for our environment as well as chickens biological and behavioral needs. As part of our sustainability unit students have created and applied a three pillars of sustainability algorithm to determine if keeping chickens is a sustainable practice. Students also continue to develop critical and creative thinking skills connected to the ongoing care of chickens and maintenance of their environment.
Year 6 implemented their critical and creative thinking, knowledge and skills developed through their Forces and Motion unit. Year 6 worked on the construction and testing phase of their mouse trap cars, ensuring they were functional. Year 6 attended a challenge in the hall where they competed for a place in the final at Kingscliff High School.
5/6S at PBPS have participated in a project-based learning documentary called ‘The Potty Way’. The students in 5/6S decided to create a documentary about our school culture. They used creative and critical thinking and followed our 6 design thinking caps to brainstorm ideas, select the best ones, plan and produce this documentary. The class studied different documentaries and interviewing styles and selected the ones they like best and those which best suited the purpose of their documentary. They each researched and performed different parts of the process, one student was the director, there was a group of editors, some were videographers and some interviewers. The students invited their parent, community members and staff to a premiere of their documentary on 5/12/2018.
Students were challenged to come up with a problem in the school that they could investigate and attempt to resolve.
The students worked in groups. The issues they found and then worked on were:
- Mosquito problem – Mozzie Busters – this group looked at making their own mosquito repellent using products from the Dreamtime Pathway.
- Captains of Compost – this group obtained composting bins from Council, started a worm farm and use the by-product of the worm farm for fertilizer.
- Green House – this group spoke to a number of local community groups regarding which plants would be best to plant in the green house. They wrote a song and performed it on the S8 STEM day. Many of the vegetables they planted are picked by the students and eaten.
- Bush Turkey problem – this group looked into the problem of the bush turkeys digging in the playground. They tried many different ideas but they kept returning.
- IBIS control – this group looked into strategies to discourage the number of Bin Chickens from coming to the school.
Kingscliff staff have participated in a future focused learning workshop examining innovative teaching practice employed in schools across NSW. Staff will be participating in 4C training to practice new pedagogies. In addition, staff in Science, Maths and Technology have participated in training in new technologies in coding and robotics to look at implementing in 2019/2020. A future CLC STEM meeting is planned to examine transition skills in project-based learning, innovative teaching and STEM.