This evening I was fortunate enough to attend a cpd course held at the Verdant Works which encouraged us to explore the possibilities of this setting for STEM based learning and lessons. The course was open to a wide range of teaching professionals including postgrads and high school teachers and so this was a good opportunity to meet and mix with those who have had different experiences to my own.
As part of this course we were invited to explore the museum and exhibitions, as well as the learning areas which can be used if teachers were to bring groups. One of the most interesting features of the visit was the huge steam engine, which I am told will be functioning soon so that visitors can get an understanding of how it worked. There are also wonderful displays of the process of creating Jute – from the plant to the finished product which included demonstrations of real, working machines.
Although I was excited and interested in what I saw, I found that I was struggling to take this into a STEM mindset and think about how I could plan learning activities and experiences appropriately around this subject matter. I tend to find that I lean towards creative and literary learning ideas and this experienced caused me to realise that I need to strengthen my knowledge of the STEM outcomes. I plan to do some research and reading to this end and this will help me during the second session of this cpd where we plan to carry out some of the possible activities.