Alexandra Schutz (class of 2015), recipient of the Andy Thomas Scholarship in 2015, has recently been featured in Issue 8 of Advanced Technology Project (ATP). ATP is a joint government initiative that aims to increase the number of students studying Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
Pedare integrates STEM from Years 6-10, mainly in our Science lessons. Some of the STEM projects students completed this year are making and testing a solar powered vehicle (Year 6), environmentally friendly houses (Year 9) and bridge building with pop sticks (Year 10).
Year 9 students have the option of studying an interdisciplinary STEM unit, which is designed for students who may have an interest in studying Engineering at University. Students work in small groups to design and test ideas using the design cycle studied in Technology, whilst learning appropriate Mathematics and Science to support the topic. Topics include areas such as Nanotechnology and Mechanical Engineering. At the end of the unit students will demonstrate evidence of their learning through group projects.
We also initiated the Engineering unit which is for Year 10 students who are interested in Engineering to complete a 10 credit Stage 1 (Year 11) subject in the second semester. These students study an accelerated course in Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics for a term and then work on their project as an engineering team considering cost, materials, forces, environmental impact and ethics. They then present their outcome at the end of Term 4. In the past, the project has been a sports shoe, but this year it will be to create a prosthetic limb.