The Year 3 class purchased some George the Farmer books with money received as a prize from their recent success at the Warrnambool Poetry Eisteddfod. They were delighted to receive the following parcel from author, Simone Kain. Thanks Simone and George!
As part of their Walktober activities the Year Prep/1 class walked to Bullens Wholesale Nursery to extend their understanding of what plants need to grow. Trevor Bullen explained that all the plants in his nursery need healthy soil, water, light and constant temperatures to grow well. Students learnt that Bullens use coconut husks in the soil to help it drain, that the plants are watered by driplines, fans move the air to help regulate temperature and that there were over 20,000 plants on site! Thanks Trevor
Year 6 students recently welcomed these new additions to their classroom incubated from Wyandotte, Barnevelder, Sussex and Astralorp/Barnevelder eggs donated by Bronwyn Lenehan. These chicks are the latest recruits in the Year 6 chicken program that will be trained by the students to interact and engage with Timboon and District Healthcare senior clients. Another great TAP community engagement opportunity!
A 2016 WorkSafe Victoria report stated that farms are the most dangerous workplaces in Victoria and this is further compounded as farms are often workplaces and residences. The Year 4/5 TAP into Farm Safety excursion gave students the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and reinforced their learning about farm safety introduced by WorkSafe Officer, Alison Dennis.
During the excursion, students rotated through 5 workstations, learning about safety in the dairy with Bruce Vallance, safe animal handling practices with Michelle Fowler and Emma Bruce (The Vet Group), Alison Dennis outlined the correct storage and handling of chemicals, James Maxwell (Warrnambool Cheese & Butter Factory) explained the risks associated with farm machinery while Frances McDowall and Tania Nevill (Community Emergency Response Team - CERT) taught DRSABC. After demonstrating their knowledge with a quick quiz, students enjoyed the cheese and milk supplied by WCB. Thank you to our presenters for helping to keep our kids safe!
The Year 7/8 Collaborative Coding class is a Science based community partnership that investigates how to code and work in a team and students also learn how technology is used to support agriculture with drones, droids and robots. Tom Walsh from The Vet Group facilitated a visit by the Coding class to Phil and Symone Vines' robotic dairy at Simpson to see the Astronaut robots milking the cows in their herd. Phil outlined the background for their decision and how his system has allowed the cows to benefit from the voluntary milking schedule and students were able to observe the robotic milking machines operating. It was a valuable opportunity for our students to be able to see world class robotic technology operating in a regional dairy business.
Once again we were fortunate to be a part of the Get into Genes travelling workshops which are supported by Agriculture Victoria in partnership with Dairy Australia, La Trobe University, The University of Melbourne and the Centre of Excellence for Plant Cell Walls. Anna Vietz and Neha Sirwani introduced the Timboon Year 10 Science students and students from Terang College to engaging workshops which introduced the fundamentals of DNA and the way it is used in dairy cattle and plant breeding. Students then rotated through hands-on work stations investigating DNA with the Year 10 students exploring DNA extraction, restriction enzymes, molecular markers and electrophoresis, while the Year 11 students investigated electrophoresis, genotyping and PCR simulations. The sessions concluded with a discussion of genetic engineering technologies, showcasing practical and relevant examples of current research being undertaken by DairyBio, DEDJTR and the Centre of Excellence for Plant Cells Walls.
Following on from their Science unit on Disasters and Ash Wednesday, the Year 6 Maths students have been presented with a problem caused by the recent severe September rains and flooding in the South West. Cooriemungle farmer, Chris McKenzie, outlined the destruction caused by floods in the region and showed the students the damage caused to his fences, laneways and paddocks. Armed with a quote from Landmark Timboon, students have to work out what Chris needs to purchase and calculate the costs to replace and repair the flood damage to his farm.
Year 10 Maths students have recently built models of pivot irrigators to help them understand the maths concepts involved in planning for, installing and operating a centre pivot irrigator. They explored pivot area calculations, the time per revolution, the depth of water passing into the root zone of the plants under the pivot, the flow rate of individual sprinkler heads, the distance covered per set of wheels, the flow rates of various nozzles, average application rate (mm/hr) and the power required to run the pivot.
The TAP into Farm Safety unit uses industry personnel to deliver safety messages that are more real and relevant than those delivered by parents or teachers. Our OHS WorkSafe award winning unit is designed to make students and their families think about the environment on farms and in our community and to be aware of the potential dangers that they may face in day to day situations. Alison Dennis from WorkSafe visited the Year 4/5 class and encouraged students to "spot the risks" in a ‘worst practice’ model set up with a Lego farm kit based on actual WorkSafe incidents. Students identified hazards and how risks can be eliminated or controlled prior to their excursion to a farm later this month.
As part of the Year 8 Science 'Camembert in the Classroom' unit, Julian Benson from Apostle Whey Cheese described his career path and the creation of his niche cheesemaking business that combined his interest in dairying and tourism. Julian challenged students to find what loved and to take advantage of opportunities when they presented themselves. Samples of Apostle Whey's 'Southern Briez' Brie, 'Bay of Martyrs' Blue Vein and 'Loch Ard Gorgeous' Camembert were compared and appreciated by students as Julian explained how the various cheeses were developed and outlined his plans for the future.