STEM Youth Development Camp

From Tuesday to Thursday in Week 10, Anthony Nykolyn, Wundarra Murray, Tahleeha Young, Damien Pintley, Tayne Peacock, and Baynen Miller attended a STEM camp run by the AECG.

All of our students fully participated in the educational sessions that ran throughout the days. I appreciated the respect and courtesy with which they related to the camp staff and me. They always approached me for permission whenever they were uncertain about what they should be doing or where they should be. It was my pleasure to take them on this camp.

One outcome that the camp achieved was to have our students working and bonding together as a team. The boys shared a room and educational group sessions together. At various times they were observed to be working together to achieve learning and social outcomes.

The sessions ranged from an hour to shorter sessions, depending on the schedule. They listened for an hour on cultural matters, they listened to information and instruction on boomerang technology and throwing, and then performed an experiment on an Indigenous musical instrument of different iterations. The experiment included measurements, analysis, and recording the results in a graph before reporting their results back to the rest of the group.

From 8.30 am to 4 pm on the Wednesday, they engaged with Aboriginal dance, knowledge of Aboriginal tools and resources, and information relating to bush tucker, before instruction on the use of drones and 3D photography, and experimentation on a coastal ecosystem that required collecting, recording, and analysing data using state-of-the-art technology. The educational activities were structured to engage all our students.

The final three sessions reinforced their previous instruction on the use of drones, mathematical measurements, and mathematical calculations. Most of the information was taught and modelled by Aboriginal teachers with whom our students could easily identify. In the evenings they took part in cultural activities and coordination games that challenged both their social and physical skills in the context of friendly competition.

The camp was a great success and intellectually engaging. This is our third year of attending AECG camps and each time I’ve been impressed with the quality of their educational content and rigour

Story contributed by Roger Bourne from Kingsgrove North High School. Published in 2019.