Part 3, Curriculum and Makerspaces – inspiration from St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School


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Part 3, Curriculum and Makerspaces – inspiration from St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School

Softlink is delighted to introduce guest blogger Jackie Child, Teacher Librarian at St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School in Brisbane and author of the TinkeringChild.com blog. Jackie is a passionate primary educator with over 40 years’ experience and a sessional tutor for pre-service teachers at Griffith University. In this series of blog posts, Jackie shares her experience working with students across all grade levels to address a range of curriculum objectives through tech-centred activities in the school’s library/makerspace.

Previous posts in this series focused on creative coding activities that address elements of the STEM curriculum and ways of connecting literature and coding.

In this week's post, Jackie shares some activities students at St Aidan’s have undertaken to apply digital technologies within the social sciences, through designing, creating, and testing digital solutions for current and future social issues. 

Deep thinking and designing sustainable solutions for social issues

The tools and resources available to students in our library makerspace enable our students to design, create, build and have fun on projects of their choice outside of lesson times. However, teachers also use our space for different subjects.

The Year 6 HASS curriculum invites students to understand the connection Australia has with neighbouring countries in the South East Asian region.

Students researched and investigated the social, economic and environmental profile of Nepal and presented their information in an infographic using Piktochart. In response to their Inquiry Question formulated during research, students worked in the Makerspace to design and create an artefact that would enhance or impact the Nepalese community.

 

These girls made a box with products to improve the health and welfare of stray dogs in Nepal. The boxes would be given to people to encourage adoption and lead to fewer stray dogs, which can cause health problems.

 

These girls used our 3D printer to produce a container they designed to hold make-up, which teenage Nepalese girls could use to lift their spirits after the 2015 earthquake.

 

These students made trading cards from the Read, Write, Think website to raise awareness of how important it is for girls to receive an education. The cards were printed with stories of successful women from Nepal.

 

These girls made a website to explain the education situation in Nepal. They also made QR Codes which led to their site and other sites of interest. They made a light box which could be used by children to stimulate fun in learning!

 

These students built a forklift with NXT Mindstorm and programmed it to lift rubble from the earthquake.

 

Living on less than $3 a day is challenging! These students made Nepalese dishes which were nutritiously sustaining.

 

These students printed a map of Nepal and used the Parrot Minidrone to show how a drone could be used to identify areas without electricity after an earthquake. They used the Tickle App to program it.

 

This is a photo taken from the drone.

 

50% of the Nepalese economy relies on tourism, so this student designed a safer seat for elephant rides after hearing how unsafe a visitor to Nepal felt.

There were so many more amazing artefacts and objects of interest created using applications like Tellagami, Aurasma and Scratch.

History students used materials and ideas from the Makerspace to design, create and make interactive activities to help a migrant or refugee girl of their age to assimilate into Australia, particularly Brisbane.

The students’ audience was the school’s International Business Manager, a number of teachers and the Principal. Students engaged with many technologies in our Makerspace to produce their creations.

  An interactive Scratch presentation of Australian animals.
  Australian Snakes and Ladders game with a robot programmed to throw the die.
  Aurasma was used, with pictures as triggers to share information about iconic Australian food.
  An interactive Power Point was created to share Aboriginal culture. 
  Lego, cards and Bristle Bots were creatively used to represent horse racing, cricket and cockroach races.
  The Memory card game was adapted to help a migrant or refugee decide how to dress for an Aussie climate.
  Adapting Monopoly to share places of interest in Brisbane.

Girls used Bee Bots, Aurasma and the Episode App to become familiar with how to swim safely by knowing the rules for the beach and swimming pool.

 

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