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New program revolutionises digital technology teaching in the classroom

Teachers and students across the Kwinana, Peel and Upper South West areas are about to get more tech savvy thanks to a three-year partnership between Scitech and Alcoa that is revolutionising how digital technologies are integrated into the classroom.

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The Alcoa Real World Digital Technologies was launched recently with 17 teachers from primary schools in the Kwinana and Rockingham regions.

This one term professional development program for teachers provides support and educational resources across all primary school year groups. The aim of the program is not only to increase confidence and capabilities in their digital teaching practices, but also provide students with hands-on engaging lessons that equip them with necessary digital skills for the future.

Scitech Professional Learning Consultant Lucas Black said the program worked by integrating digital technologies into daily teaching regardless of the subject matter.

“For example, coding can be used in a literacy lesson to enhance storytelling and narrative structure, or a numeracy lesson can be supplemented with the use of a micro:bit, to learn about data collection,” Mr Black said.

Safety Bay Primary School teacher Sue McCulloch believes this approach is one of the strengths of the new Scitech program.

“We feel that teaching digital skills from an inquiry-based approach helps students learn to use digital technologies effectively and safely to access, create and communicate information and ideas. But it also helps with skills such as problem solving, collaboration, reflection and resilience in a world that is continually changing.”

Alcoa Senior Partnerships Advisor Sally Fairnie said the Alcoa Digital Technologies Enrichment Program focused on addressing how teachers and students were facing unprecedented digital learning challenges.

“With 87% of jobs in Australia requiring some level of digital skills1 we know that the demand for students having a high level of digital literacy is becoming critical for future work opportunities,” Ms Fairnie said.

“This new program delivers assistance to teachers so they can confidently bring skills that will empower students in their learning to succeed in this evolving digital world.”

Alcoa Real World Digital Technologies is the first stage of a program that will also include the launch of the Alcoa Champions of Digital technologies, a year long, in-depth professional development program in 2023.

These new digital programs add further support to Scitech’s commitment of ensuring Western Australian students have the necessary STEM skills to align with current and future workforce demands.

1 RMIT Online and Deloitte Access Economics, 2021, Ready Set upskill: Effective training for the jobs of tomorrow

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