As we wrap up Cows Create Careers for 2019 we have invited a panel of speakers into the Year 7/8 CCC elective classroom to describe their respective career paths including their education, experience, daily roles, features of their job that appeals to them, any quirks or benefits they receive and any pieces of advice for our students. Panelists included Jeremy Pike, a project officer with Heytesbury & District Landcare Network, Keely Price, a livestock / milk procurement officer from The Midfield Group, Dermot Kearns, a farm manager with The Midfield Group, Bronte Gorringe, an agribusiness consultant from Mulchay & Co who was accompanied by Charlie, and Michael Lyne, who owns and operates Michael Lyne Contracting. After the formal panel session Michael introduced students to his contractors Ben Newey who operated the disc seed drill, Chook Fowler with a self propelled sprayer and Matt Hanson who drove a silage/hay baler. Thank you to all our panelists for their time and interest in helping our students investigate potential career paths in agriculture.
Simon Gleeson was invited into the VCAL Maths classroom to introduce Bilyana Grazing as a business model for VCAL students to investigate inputs, processes and outputs in agribusiness. Simon described the evolution of Bilyana Grazing, it’s business structure and how the operation is paid on a weight gain basis rearing healthy, fertile dairy replacement heifers and that it has also diversified into Wagyu F1s. Students learnt that attention to detail, the calculated purchasing of inputs such as pellets and drench, a reliance on budgets/planning and using an Excel spreadsheet for decision making was an integral component of this business. Simon stressed that Maths was used to determine business running costs, animal production costs, cost benefit analysis, managing cashflow, benchmarking, goal setting and year to year comparisons which resulted in better decision making and efficiency. After this introduction to business analysis, our VCAL students will work on individual projects investigating number, measurement, financial numeracy or probability/statistics in agribusiness.
Thanks to Timboon Motors who shared this Facebook post celebrating Milky's new look!
"Our master spray-painter and his apprentices were more than happy to put the finishing touches on this masterpiece! Well done to the Timboon P12 School Year 3/4 students on creating this spectacular show piece! We look forward to continuing this collaboration in the future" Thanks Timboon Motors, she looks brilliant!
Our Year 9/10 Business elective students dodged showers today and visited The Corner Store Timboon where they learnt about the deli enterprise from owner, Emma Pope. Emma outlined her vision for the Store and how she isolated gaps in local foodie businesses based on what she had tried herself, or had researched in social media trends and magazines like the Gourmet Traveler. That point of difference was also important in purchasing produce for the store whether it be Jane Dough bread or glassware for gifts. She explained that there is no formula for retail in a rural regions but that she sourced seasonal vegetables and used this in cyclical soups, salads or curries as well as the other deli goods. Emma described the role of social media in promoting The Corner Store as it is not on a major thoroughfare and the importance of exposure in groups or marketing like Great Ocean Road (GOR) Tourism and the RACV magazine. Whilst running your own business can be hard work and stressful at times, Emma indicated that she really enjoys it and appreciates contributing to the Timboon experience for locals and tourists. Thank you for your candor and insights for our budding business people Emma!
Today in our Year 7/8 Food Tech elective, Bread Basket, the class took on the Great Garlic Bread Challenge! All students designed their own recipes selecting the type of dough, fillings, toppings and shape. The smells were unbelievable! The finished products were fantastic showing more independent designing and cooking skills, what a great creative way to learn about breadmaking. Will Jane, you'd be proud!
The Year 9/10 Geography – Food for Thought elective students have been investigating what factors lead to food insecurity. To examine how threats from non-native plants, animals and insects affect our food security we invited Nerida Evans, a District Vet with the Department of Agriculture, and Geoff Rollinson, the Landcare Coordinator of Heytesbury and District Landcare Network to address the class on this topic. Nerida described her career path and the role of a Department Vet in protecting against disease outbreaks, controlling invasive animals and their impact on the Australian environment and agriculture. Geoff defined smothering weeds and cited examples of these in our region such as Wandering Trad, Blue Periwinkle and Blackberries and the way they are controlled. He also introduced students to the Keeping Carbon on the Farm pilot project that includes a suite of activities that farmers can undertake to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and better prepare for climate change. We will look forward to learning about this in future classes.
Continuing with our Bushfire theme, students welcomed CFA volunteers into the School’s library to describe and contrast the 1983 Ash Wednesday fires and the 2018 St Patrick’s Day fires and help promote bushfire awareness. John Mahony (Allansford CFA) and Kelvin Boyle (Naringal CFA) outlined the weather conditions, point of origin, fire fighting procedures, wind change and fatal consequences that they experienced during the Ash Wednesday fires. They described the way the community rallied after the event to support those impacted and the improvements that were made to fire trucks, fire fighting uniforms, communications and warning systems. The current Year 5/6 students learnt that the 2017 Year 5/6 cohort then made up fire evacuation plans with their families, produced posters and introduced bushfire awareness to their peers at TAP’s On! 2017 with the Timboon CFA. Bryce Morden and Rhys Kensit (Timboon CFA) recounted that only 4 months later, climatic conditions lead to the 2018 St Patrick’s Day fires in our region. They described the causes, use of the Vic Emergency App, the role of the CFA and the community response to the natural disaster which included community meetings, informal BBQs, Blazeaid volunteers, donations of food, clothing and money. Students had the opportunity to try on the fire fighting gear, examine scrapbooks and newspaper articles describing the events and trial the Naringal fire training map and Mount Warrnambool fire tower map. These students will be tasked to develop a fire and evacuation plan with their parents and will discuss the objects they have included in the Pillowcase Project, just in case…
To introduce our TAP into Natural Disasters – Bushfire unit for 2019 we invited Vin Dillon and Elaine Lock from the Australian Red Cross to lead our Year 5/6 students into the Pillowcase Project. In light of the St Patrick’s Day fires in our region we decided this was an opportune time to introduce this concept at Timboon P12 School. Vin discussed with students the importance of being prepared for any activity or event and they participated in a mindfulness session to prepare their minds for the thoughts and feelings that may arise before, during and after an emergency. Cards were distributed to challenge students to help them decide on the difference between a ‘need’ and a ‘want’ with groups of students deciding what they would need in an emergency. The students were given pillowcases to illustrate with things they would want to pack in an emergency with words used to describe how to act in these circumstances. Vin explained how the first Pillowcase Project was introduced into schools and communities by the American Red Cross after Cyclone Katrina to help students prepare for an emergency and build resilience when facing adversity. Thanks Vin and Elaine, it was a brilliant lesson.
Have a look at this gorgeous collage that showcases the brilliant curriculum opportunities and work undertaken by our Year 3/4 students as they studied Healthy Bones, Healthy Eating. It depicts the visit from nutritionist, Diana D’Auria, and dairy tastings with educator Heidi Van Es, learning out nutrition, good bones, healthy food choices, scrumptious sandwiches, clever packaging and labels using nets, healthy fruit platter and our beautiful cow Picasso Cow, Milky! Please call into the Year 3/4 rooms to check it out.
To learn about other types of agribusinesses and business ventures in our region, the Year 9/10 Commerce elective class hosted Matt Bowker, who, with his wife Sophie, operate Kangaroobie Camp and Kangaroobie Meats. Matt described how their farm was established in 1860 and that he is a 6th generation farmer on a farm that has previously produced turkeys, pigs for the goldrush, dairy and beef cattle. They run 900 head of Angus beef that are crossed with Simmental bulls and their online ordering system means that they can maximize primary cuts and deliver to a central point in Melbourne and surrounds on their monthly delivery runs. The secondary cuts are made into sausages, mince and roasts which feature in many of the school meals at the Kangaroobie Camp which was established in 1978 by Matt’s parents. The camp, which features adventure and farm activities, hosts schools, including Timboon P-12 Year 3/4 students, and family or social events such as parties or weddings. The Bowkers also operate the Otway Lighthouse complex which includes tourist facilities and an interpretation centre with free access to residents of the Corangamite Shire. Employing a staff of 42 people, Matt challenged students to look at different ways of making money from what you enjoy doing and to regularly step back from your business to reassess where you are going and what you are doing. Great advice.