Over the last two sessions two community members have been assisting students in the final planning and design aspects of their group urban planning maths projects. Parent Carmel Gray, from Healing Gardens, in garden & landscape design and Architect Joe Wiegerinck, from Elements Home Design, in technical drawing. Both Joe and Carmel spoke to the students initially and then rotated through each group assisting them in drawing and refining their ideas. Students were able to see how the skills they were learning had real world implications. A big thank you to Carmel and Joe for sharing their expertise with us 🙂
One of the major driving forces for the new syllabus was the need to design a curriculum with explicit inclusion of skills such as critical and creative thinking, ethical behaviour, personal and social competence or intercultural understanding, which prepare students for life and work in a complex technological driven world. Source: The Mathematical Bridge, Issue 1.
Looking at flood prevention design.
Well designed commercial building.
Twenty Stage 2 enrichment maths students are taking part in an urban design project with the support of Coffs Harbour City Council Strategic Planning Officer, Grahame Fry. A property zoned for redevelopment in the city centre has been identified and students will be working in groups to develop a proposal, plans and 3D model, using virtual technology, of their own design. Their final model and plans will be submitted to the strategic development department for approval. Students must comply with the council rules for building and today met with Mr Fry and 4th year UNE planning and design student Matt to go through the project criteria/specifics and then walk to the site. The students discovered that the area is prone to flooding, already limited in parking space and has a total land area of 1000 square metres. It also is home to native trees and wildlife. They can build up to the perimeter of the property but then have to consider height restrictions: Front: 0 metres; Sides: 0 metres; Back: 12 m if building is more than 20m high or 5m if building is 20 metres high or less. They also have to consider wheelchair access ramps that comply with the Australian Standards of a 1:14m gradient.
Tactile ground surface indicators may also be needed for the visually impaired. The students thoroughly enjoyed the excursion and their retention of information was fantastic. They are looking forward to working together and are also very fortunate to have Saxon’s parents to support them in class. Saxon’s mother is a garden designer so will be providing support with landscaping and garden design whilst his father will be helping students to develop skills in drawing up their plans correctly for submission.
Class 1B and 3/4H recently performed at the Coffs Harbour Eisteddfod and then at the Coffs Harbour collective Schools Spectacular concert. 1B performed a song from One Direction and 3/4H had a distinctly martial arts theme with Kung Fu Fighting. Mrs Booth caught the two classes before they headed out for rehearsals and 3/4H even provided her with an impromptu performance 🙂
3/4H developed skills in dot painting this afternoon with their teacher Mrs Currie. Firstly they watched parts of a video from Bronwyn Ferguson on dot painting and then they went outside to collect sticks of differing sizes for their painting. The students practised carefully loading their sticks with paint and pressing them onto paper. They then used a stencil of a mask to decorate with their own patterns. It was so quiet in class as they concentrated on their work. Well done 🙂
Last Monday the 20th of May, Geoff Tomlins came to talk to stage 2 about our Climate Clever Energy Savers Program.
He talked to us about energy and how we can save money on our electricity bills. We learnt about renewable and non renewable sources of energy and the importance of making cleaner choices for the planet.
He set up different activity stations to help us learn about the different forms of renewable energy. We got to see how an electrical curcuit works. He had an exercise bike that was hooked up with an old washing machine motor. We had to pedal really fast to make a light bulb work. We got to see how solar panels work by connecting the wires to run a fan and a light and to make a buzzer sound.
We learnt some helpful ways to save energy and are going to try these out at home and in our classrooms.
A measure of the impact humans have on the environment is called an ecological footprint. A country’s ecological footprint is the sum of all the cropland, grazing land, forest and fishing grounds required to produce the food, fibre and timber it consumes, to absorb the wastes emitted when it uses energy and to provide space for infrastructure. Source WWF Australia
Stage 2 is looking at sustainable living and the ecological footprint their life choices leave on the environment. What they eat- how it is packaged, does it need refrigeration or to be heated, and where does it come from? What housing do they live in? How they move about the community? What do they wear and who makes it? Simple decisions can have an enormous impact on the lives of others and the planet.
Click here to find out your ecological footprint: My Footprint, or to learn more about e-waste i.e. computers. Watch this brilliant video from ABC’s The Checkout at the 11.59 mark to understand what happens to all our mobile phones and other products, and how manufacturers want their products to become obsolete or out of style so YOU buy more!
This is an excellent article from local Coffs Harbour architect, Reiner Schimminger, about the amazing Eco Housing project (and an Australian first) City of Hopeat the Jetty .The development follows the standards set out by the Living Building Challenge which places the strictest performance requirements on a built structure.
3P and 3/4H finished their maths lessons with Mrs Booth recently. Both 3/4H and 3P have been using virtual technology to complete tasks connected to data, measurement, space and geometry. Though it was challenging using Sim-on-a-Stick all students have worked hard and helped each other to problem solve . The final task for 3/4H was to build a scale replica of the school library in Minecraft staying as close to the real design as possible. Some managed to finish and others still have some work to do but the fantastic thing was no body wanted to leave the lessons as they were so engaged with their tasks 🙂 We also had a discussion on perspective because some students still felt Steve, the Minecraft avatar, was 2 metres tall though the Minecraft wiki puts him at approximately 1.75 metres tall. Each Minecraft block is 1 metre cubed and students placed 2 on top of each other to check. Since we don’t have wifi yet we were unable to go into each others builds to gain a viewing perspective from within the world. The wiki states:
The player’s eye level (According to coordinates while pressing F3) is 1.62 meters. Since his eyes are 29 pixels above his feet, leaving 3 pixels above his eyes (.17m), Steve is approximately 1.79 meters tall (5’10”).
Stage 2 has been working on the Storypath unit ‘Toy Factory’ over Term 1. These units are a highly engaging program that fosters problematic thinking and higher order thinking skills as students are scaffolded through a series of learning episodes.
Originally developed in Scotland during the 1960’s, Storypath draws support from decades of experience with teachers and students.
The Episodes of a Storypath are:
Creating the Setting – Students create the setting by completing a frieze (mural) or other visual representation of the place.
Creating Characters – Students create characters for the story whose roles they will play during subsequent episodes.
Context Building – Students are involved in activities that stimulate them to think more deeply about the people and place they have created.
Critical Incidents – Characters confront problems typical of those faced by people of that time and place.
Concluding Event – Students plan and participate in an activity that brings closure to the story.
Information source: Storypath Stu.Murray.Wikispaces.com
3P have been working in groups to design and develop their toys with all students assuming their particular job roles as part of the process. It is hard to work together but when each person has an identified purpose tasks are achieved and everyone is productive. It is just like working in a real toy factory. 🙂
This is an excellent 10 minute video from the Mattel Toy Factory in 1950 and the stages they went through to create a new toy. It mirrors the process Stage 2 took with their toy designs and final presentation.
The Framing Paper Consultation Report: Mathematics (ACARA, 2009, p. 9) states that “new and emerging technologies provide not just new tools for doing mathematics but also new possibilities for pedagogical approaches.”
NSW Maths Syllabus – MS2.1 Estimates, measures, and records lengths, distances and perimeters in metres, centimetres and millimetres.
3/4H and Mrs Booth have been working on a mathematics activity connected to length and scale on Wednesday. Using the Minecraft Pocket Edition app for iPad students needed to estimate, measure and record the perimeter of the school library. Using a trundle wheel the perimeter was measured and the students commenced building the library using the scale of 2 blocks = 1 metre. After they had built the perimeter wall the students commenced adding doors, windows, tables, bookshelves, the IWB, ceiling fans and even made sure that they used the correct carpet resource blocks. They needed to estimate the size of each object as they were building, and try to remain as close to the real school library design as possible. Minecraft uses the metric system and each block is equivalent to 1 cubic metre. The students also learnt that the default player, named Steve, is approximately 1.79 metres tall or 5 feet 10 inches (Mrs Booth initially thought he was 2 metres tall). The students then wanted to know which of them would nearly be as tall as Steve if they stood on a chair. Initially estimating and then using a metre ruler the students were measured and it was decided that Ngaarruu was the closest measuring 1.75 m. It was a great lesson and the students returned for the following two lunchtimes to work on their builds which should be finished in next weeks final lesson. Excellent work 3/4H.
On Thursday 3P used the school virtual world platform Sim-on-a-Stick to continue working on their maths tasks. This was very challenging as each group only has a short time and had missed some lessons due to the school server change over and having to use Minecraft on the iPad instead. It was excellent to see students working mathematically by helping each other and Sharlah was a wonderful teacher as she sat and worked with another student to solve a problem. Even Mr Pike is getting the hang of it! 🙂
We acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work and we pay our respects to the Elders both past and present.
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