22 June 2021
In today’s ever changing society, 21st-Century STEAM skills are becoming more important than ever before. The workplace is changing. New jobs are emerging as a result of advances in automation and technology. The reality is, the jobs and industries that our students will work in once they graduate, don’t even exist yet.
So what are 21st-Century skills? They are a core set of competencies that provide a framework for successful learning in the classroom, and also ensure students can thrive in a world where changes are constant and learning never stops.
Rather than being taught individually, STEAM skills, such as problem solving, creativity, critical thinking, teamwork and initiative are weaved throughout curriculum and across all subjects.
Recognising the importance of developing STEAM skills in our students, we have been working closely with our feeder schools; Meadow Springs, Oakwood and Singleton Primary Schools, to develop a K-12 approach to STEAM. The idea behind the approach is to build consistency and familiarity in our methods; as students move from primary to secondary school the skills and vocabulary are transferrable.
The first order of priority has been developing a consistency in language, so students across each of the primary schools and Coastal Lakes College are all using the same phrases and definitions for skills. Working together we have come up with a list of 12 skills that will form the foundation of our K-12 approach and so far we have been seeing some great results.
Staff and students are gaining confidence with the language and it is allowing us to form stronger working relationships between each of our schools as we are all committed to achieving common goals and sharing resources.
The second phase of our K-12 approach is designed to create aspiration in our students, engage them in their studies and encourage them to take ownership of their learning journey
“We recognise that a child’s education is a K-12 journey, it was important to us that we create consistency and familiarity, to ensure a smooth transition from primary to high school. By creating consistent practices, the opportunities to achieve success compound and collectively we are able to offer our students a higher quality education.
By starting the process in primary schools, and building familiarity and aspiration from a young age, we are helping to increase buy-in and engagement from students, which will ultimately lead to higher levels of uptake in their subject and career decisions. Creating aspiration within students is a critical component of our approach” said Shane Easton, Associate Principal at Coastal Lakes College.
Over the past two days, our schools have been exhibiting the results of our collaboration at the 2021 STEM Enterprise Showcase where we have had lots of positive feedback from attendees about our commitment to ensuring success for all students.
To find out more about our focus on technologies at Coastal Lakes College visit https://coastallakescollege.wa.edu.au/teaching-learning/programs/our-technologies-focus/