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Bolwarra Public School

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Location: Hunter Valley

We are a semi - rural school of approx. 450 children. The area is expanding quickly as new estates spring up on the outskirts of the city of Maitland. In the last 7- 8 years we have experienced a significant growth in school population encompassing a mix of all social classes.

How has your school used its Gonski funding?

Our largest project to be funded from Gonski is our “Kid's Shed”. A teacher (carefully selected) has been employed for one day a week to set up diversified projects with small groups of children from Yr 3 - 6. The groups are rotated over terms so that many different children are included in this experience. The projects are "hands on" and created with an aim to "increase children's engagement in learning". Two of the projects have been: cultivating plants, documenting the process by filming and selling the final product. The other saw children building model cars that ran on solar energy and racing these in a local area school competition.

How has Gonski made a positive difference for students?

Without Gonski funding this project would not have occurred as our school does not attract extra funds. The project has allowed many children, to enjoy and learn in a collaborative environment engaging in activities that would be challenging to perform in a normal classroom. The teacher employed to create and run the lessons, is especially tuned to nurture inquiry based learning with a science focus thus allowing the children to gain knowledge and experience that they may otherwise not have in our school setting.

What could your school do with Gonski funding in the future?

Without Gonski funding this project would not have occurred as our school does not attract extra funds. The project has allowed many children, to enjoy and learn in a collaborative environment engaging in activities that would be challenging to perform in a normal classroom. The teacher employed to create and run the lessons, is especially tuned to nurture inquiry based learning with a science focus thus allowing the children to gain knowledge and experience that they may otherwise not have in our school setting.

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