Bayside P – 12 College has introduced a school wide STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) program for upper primary to Year 9 this year, 2020. A team was established last year to develop the vision and curriculum for this important 21st century learning. The program focusses on developing a STEM mindset fostering skills such as team work, critical thinking and problem solving and above all developing curiosity in our students.
The team consisting of Natalie Hammond, Joe Horan, Sam Levy, Jeff Frampton, Darrren Sutcliffe collaborated closely gathering evidence from research and current thinking around STEM skills. They made connections with tertiary institutes and industry, established a relationship with the Wyndham Technical school and Scienceworks and developed an exciting curriculum with real world problems to solve. Year 9s mentor younger students and work alongside teachers to enthuse and help develop skills.
Some of the activities that the team have developed include a primary NASA challenge, robotics and coding, researching and problem solving sustainability and environment challenges. Their first project was making edible water bottles as a potential solution to the world’s disposable plastic problem.
The collaboration between the team has been inspiring. Their drive and passion for STEM has resulted in a viable and exciting program at Bayside this year (albeit cut short through remote learning). Their work has formed the foundation of a program that we expect will grow in strength allowing Bayside to become a leader in this field. Further outcomes include an increase in students taking up STEM areas in their senior years and even moving into these important fields as careers. We hope, too, to extend the mentoring aspect of the program to our neighbouring primary schools in Hobsons Bay.
Click link below for a short STEM video: