2019 Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools


[Music plays] (Sarah Finney) I’ve been a teacher for 17 years. I love teaching science because science is my passion and my joy and I like to share what I’m excited about. I love that science is humble. Science knows its limitations. Science is dynamic and changing and always surprising. Children are born scientists and it’s my job to help them harness that curiosity and exercise it in all areas of their lives. My school brings together old and new technologies and we have been doing things like building phases of the Moon with Oreo biscuits and I’ve asked the children to turn them into stop motion animations. I’m always thinking about new ideas and new ways to interest my students. I’ve co-founded a group of teachers who are interested in sharing ideas and science and helping each other deliver curriculum and make it fun and exciting for their students. What I’m most proud of is an initiative that I’ve brought into the school whereby the Year 3 and 4 students choose a topic of interest which they go and investigate. I invite scientists to come in and critique their work, commenting and discussing it with them. STEM learning is really important for children because it helps them to develop a growth mindset. It helps them become critical, analytical thinkers and it prepares them for the job market of the future. This prize is recognition for the work that all of the science teachers around Australia do to inspire their students and I’m incredibly honoured to be receiving this prize. The most important thing that children should remember about science is that it’s everywhere. It doesn’t exist only in the classroom. [Music plays]

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