School chosen for Federal STEM program

Aiden BoyhamSound Telegraph

East Waikiki Primary School has been selected as one of 100 schools in Australia to take part in a special science, technology, mathematics and engineering app program from 2018.

The school, which was selected by the Federal Government to take part in the Early Learning STEM Australia pilot, will see its preschoolers become involved with a series of play-based apps starting next year.

Students will be introduced to the concepts of sorting, ordering, patterns and representations in the program, all within a theme of “celebration”.

Principal Luke Clatworthy said the school was thrilled to be involved in the program, which was the second high-level project the school had been accepted into this year.

“The school is looking at having a STEM base across the whole school in the future,” he said.

“What we are hoping is when a child starts early they will be able to develop their technology skills from kindergarten to Year 6 — so when they leave the school and start secondary in Year 7 they are going to be more confident and competent with the use of technology.”

WA Senator Michaelia Cash said employment trends indicated 75 per cent of Australia’s fastest growing careers demanded skills in digital literacy and STEM.

“We want to help children explore new ideas and skills in science, technology, engineering and maths,” she said.

“This new $6 million program will give our littlest learners the opportunity to develop numeracy skills and scientific curiosity that will set them up for the rest of their schooling.”

Minister for Education and Training, Simon Birmingham said independent analysis released recently showed the apps were effective in introducing new languages to preschool children, raising their awareness of other cultures, and engaging their interest in learning different languages.

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