At the start of the Changemaker Program, Sarah decided it is unacceptable that students aren’t actively engaged in learning every day. She believes in a school where students are excited about what they are learning and, as a result, are achieving to the best of their ability. However, the reality for her school at the start of the year was that innovative and engaging learning experiences weren’t being consistently provided to students, 16% of students were falling outside the A-C academic range, and 48% of students’ effort and behaviour is only satisfactory, needs attention or is unacceptable.
Sarah decided to target and select groups of students to participate in a range of events and workshops that focussed on STEAM and entrepreneurship, with the aim of scaling the program across her school, ultimately embedding STEAM across the curriculum.
She sourced external speakers and events for students to engage in, like Level Up from Meridian State College, Taj Pabari, Founderfest, Social Entrepreneurship (CQU, Bundaberg), VSC (Fraser Coast) and Scott Millar. Different groups of students from different year levels participated across the events, generating enthusiasm and interest in a range of students. Teachers also had the opportunity to engage in the events and listen to guest speakers.
From all of these events, Sarah and her team have collected ideas to contribute to her school’s first STEAM Dream day for all of the students at her secondary school and the primary schools in the area.
In addition, Sarah and her team have established connections with the Education Faculty at USC and USC students are now mentoring students at her school. She’s also continuing to shape the long-term strategic direction of her school with regards to innovative teaching practices.
To date, 311 students and staff have experienced various engaging and interactive events across the school, in conjunction with USC.
“One student, Dayna, attended and participated in Founderfest over a Friday and a weekend. Feedback from the guest speaker / mentor), Scott Millar, was that she was fantastic and definitely has a bright future ahead of her with such a great work ethic. Scott made special mention of Dayna following Founderfest and said he was “blown away” by her professionalism and eagerness to learn, her work ability and her perseverance, calmness, and ability to stay rational under pressure; qualities that are difficult to find when looking for staff of his own.”
Like the idea?
Sarah would love your support for STEAM Dream, or for you to start a similar program in your school, and she’d love to hear about any ideas you have or lend a hand where she can. Shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to get in touch with Sarah and we can connect you. Feel free to cheer her on in the comments below as well.
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