Over terms two and three in 2021, six West Australian Catholic schools joined together to participate in a world-leading professional learning program for primary school teachers focused on curriculum-aligned STEM.
Catholic Education Western Australia teamed up with Makers Empire to deliver Makers Empire’s pioneering Learning by Design course, which is backed by Macquarie University research.
Participating West Australian Catholic schools were:
- St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School, Pinjarra
- St Joseph’s School, Southern Cross
- Ursula Frayne Catholic College, East Victoria Park
- St Simon Peter Catholic Primary School, Ocean Reef
- St John’s Primary School, Scarborough
- St Clare’s School, Lathlain
The schools recently came together for an online showcase to share and celebrate their learning. To prepare for the showcase, students watched the videos made by other schools so they could prepare feedback and questions for each other during the showcase.
Matthew Ferrinda, Team Leader of Digital Learning from the Catholic Education Western Australian office said, “This has been an excellent opportunity for students to design solutions to contextual problems through a design thinking framework. It was wonderful to witness the varied creative and practical innovations during the showcase. The project enabled students to further develop problem solving and creative thinking skills, central to the Western Australia’s first State STEM skills strategy. After numerous conversations across many teams it was a pleasure to collaborate with Makers Empire and bring this project to fruition.”
Mandi Dimitriadis, director of learning at Makers Empire, said, “It has been a fantastic experience working with the diverse group of Catholic schools from Western Australia. As Makers Empire’s first project to be fully designed and delivered remotely, it has been extremely rewarding to witness teachers readily engage in online professional learning and work collegiately as an online learning community. Participation and enthusiasm levels have been high and we are excited by the range of design thinking projects that have been developed to help students solve relevant problems in their local contexts.”
Lap Leung, a co-founder at Makers Empire, said, “Makers Empire has been delighted to partner and support CEWA in implementing and delivering on their world-leading STEM in Primary Schools 3D Printing Project. We are happy to be able to assist Catholic Education WA to fulfil part of the ‘Western Australian Government’s Future Jobs, Future Skills STEM strategy’ by helping to prepare and educate young Western Australians in these important skills. Well done to all the schools, teachers and students involved – your projects were absolutely amazing!”