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Podcast: Embedding language, culture and risk taking into science lessons

Written by Ben Newsome on June 2nd, 2017.      0 comments

Education Changemakers and the FizzicsEd Podcast Episode 3

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Maddie & Louka from Education Changemakers

Maddie and Louka from the Education Changemakers drop by to chat about their work in supporting teacher-led innovation that is creating stunning learning communities across the globe. We talk about the importance of threading culture and history into science lessons as well as why it’s ok to make mistake, make mess and allow students to challenge themselves when running science lessons that matter.

About Maddie Scott-Jones

Maddie Scott-Jones from Education Changemakers

Maddie is the Director of Communities at Education Changemakers and brings and exemplary teaching career to her work at the global EC tribe. An alumna of the Changemaker program, her change initiatives focussed on helping children to embrace failure and increase their entrepreneurial resilience, which has seen her become a judge at the National Science Talent Search, speak at conferences across Australia and support her students win the National Maths Talent Quest. As a teacher at a large catholic school in Victoria, Maddie taught secondary Science and Mathematics and was the coordinator  for Gifted and talented students and Student Leadership. Since working with Education Changemakers, Maddie has built a global network of over 1000 passionate and innovative teachers. She led the design and delivery of The Passion Index, a toolkit for schools to engage students in passion-led learning, co-created with teachers across Australia.

About Louka Parry

Louka Parry from Education Changemakers

Louka is the the Director of Programs at Education Changemakers and is one of Australia’s exciting emerging education thinkers and doers, with a track record of leading dramatic improvements in challenging school settings. Louka represents the new generation of education leaders as an individual who has travelled to every continent, learned five languages fluently (including the Indigenous Australian languages Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjatjara) and was promoted to Principal at only 27 years old for which he was named South Australian Inspirational Public Secondary teacher of the Year. Louka has worked with diverse audiences across Australia and around the globe including AITSL, Federal Treasury, SVA, BETT, NARIS, Leading educators Across the Planet, Education We Want and Microsoft.

Top 3 learnings
  1. Make mess! It’s ok for a classroom to be untidy whilst students explore their curiosity, simply embed some clean up time afterwards!
  2. Take a risk and learn from failure. It’s often when we challenge ourselves to try something new that the real learning and growth occurs. This applies to both teachers and students equally.
  3. Embed culture & history in your lessons wherever possible. If you can get students to understand the cultural & historical context behind why a scientific development occurred it will always have more meaning, especially if you can show how a particular concept applies directly to the students own community.
Education tip

Find out what your students think scientists look like. You’d be amazed what they think! Get them to draw a scientist… how many kids produce an old, white, crazy male with wild hair in a lab coat exploding things in a lab? Highly cliched and not representative of what the scientists actually look like nor do. Time to deconstruct the myth…

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Further contact details for Maddie & Louka

About the FizzicsEd Podcast

With interviews with leading science educators and STEM thought leaders, this science education podcast is about highlighting different ways of teaching kids within and beyond the classroom. It's not just about educational practice & pedagogy, it's about inspiring new ideas & challenging conventions of how students can learn about their world!

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Happy teaching

Ben Newsome
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