STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths)
The Millen Maker Space is open and has been a large project for the STEM program this year. Many exciting resources including Squishy Circuits, Wearable Technology, Drones, Green screen kits and Makey Makey kits now fill the shelves in the Maker Space area. Reference books and student readers have also been purchased to enhance student and teacher experiences in STEM.
The year has been both busy and fulfilling for me as the STEM coordinator. I have attended and presented at many conferences, gathering and sharing information about this exciting learning area. A highlight would be presenting at the State STEM Learning Conference at the Burswood Crown Convention Centre. It was a privilege to share that forum with the students from our award winning KLS Coding team. The girls were very well received and did a masterful job in highlighting what can be achieved in a primary school in the STEM learning area.
Another highlight this year was the Millen Science Fair and Maker Space opening. Students presented some outstanding projects in the science fair and a big thank you goes to all parents who supported their children and got involved with science on the day. The school was showcased to an excellent standard to officials from the community at the Maker Space opening and a big thank you to the Millen P&C, Millen coding club, Mr Fanayan, Mrs Hill, the Maker Space committee and administration staff who all ensured the success of this event.
It has been rewarding to observe the high standard displayed in STEM projects this year. This was very evident on our STEM presentations day in Term 1 where a representative from Scitech visited the school and gave prizes and feedback to our amazing students. She was very impressed and gave the students and me some very encouraging comments.
Next year will see a change in emphasis to more opportunities for teachers to work with me to plan for STEM learning in the school. I will work with phase groups to design and implement targeted and integrated programs of work that focus on skill development for teachers and students. We plan to provide many opportunities for students to demonstrate their knowledge through events or competitions having been rigorous in their learning in STEM subjects.
Coding Club began in Term 1, 2018 for children who were interested in participating in a video game creation competition. This was open to Year 6 children, with the inclusion of one Year 5 child. Coding club continued for the majority of the year for the 20 students. Coding Club met in the library each Thursday after school for an hour. We looked at a range of topics from video game creation (winning 1st place in the DXC Coding competition), python based coding activities, mBot soccer ‘block’ coding (Arduino), 3D design and printing as well as DIY drones!
We celebrated our successes with a visit from the Minister of Education and representatives from DXC Technology as well as an end of year pizza party.