Once again Mr Mottram, Mrs Frazer and their team orchestrated a great Primary campus Family Science Night with the theme – Future Earth. Over 120 people attended the event and participated in a range of activities that tested both parents and students who worked through a series of challenges at various workstations. TAP activities included coding a little Ozobot around a course and comparing the soil types of Mars and Earth to determine what is needed to grow plants... Mark Watney (Matt Damon in The Martian) we have been learning from you!
Food and Fibre - the original STEM. It was wonderful to be given the opportunity to showcase the technology that is currently involved in agriculture to our VCE Food Studies students recently. Drones, vertical gardens, droids, new sources of protein, the GM debate, swarm robots, autonomous fruit pickers, robotic weed killers, completely autonomous farms, big data analysis, optimal growing wavelengths, and precision agriculture linking apps, phones, computers, GPS guidance systems into a whole system of data gathering and useage were introduced. Examples of the impact of technology locally were outlined including drone usage with students conducting a research trial to test to see if the cheese packing robots at WCB bruised the product!!
Our Year 11 Chemistry students have studied biochemistry and oil refining in Term 2 and recently learnt about hydrocarbons and fractional distillation. As part of the TAP community engagement and to contextualize their learning, Origin Community Engagement Manager, Linda French, organized a tour to the Origin gas plant for our students. The tour was preceded by a site induction which was conducted at the school on 18th July where students learnt about the required dress code, potential ignition sources and safety. During the tour, Origin engineers hosted Mr Mottram and the students on site and explained the oil extraction process in detail and answered questions. Thank you to everyone involved in making this learning even more tangible and real for our students.
After Principal Sean Fitzpatrick presented the TAP model at the ATASA Conference in May, we recently welcomed teachers from Meninigie Area School to Timboon to share elements of the TAP first hand. Teachers Melissa, Anne, Andrea and Sean showcased the TAP curriculum and demonstrated how effective it is to ‘tap’ into a local community to better connect with a community and region.
Drone footage is utilized to introduce our Year 8 students to their Maths in Farm Design unit of work which challenges students to investigate the design of large dairy farms and requires them to use their measurement skills to answer questions about the design and operational efficiency of the farms. Students undertake a variety of tasks including interpreting the scale of a farm map, working out distances cows travel, the stocking rate, the materials and costs involved in fencing the farm, the paddock sizes and total farm area, and are required to redesign the farm layout to improve the operational efficiency of the dairy business. Students also have the option to use their own family business or other farm maps to complete these investigations allowing students to build STEM capacity with problem solving in their immediate environment.
A challenge has been issued to Timboon P-12 School staff, students and guests to think of even more careers, opportunities or avenues that we can ‘TAP into’ to enrich existing curriculum or to develop new initiatives to excite our teachers and engage our students.