Youngsters learning new skills at M'boro preschool
BRAXTON Jensen doesn't know it, but he's learning skills for a job that may not yet exist.
He, along with the other youngsters at the Village Kids Children's Centre in Granville, have been busy learning maths and science skills courtesy of the $6 million Early Learning STEM Australia project funded by the Federal Government.
The program was developed by the University of Canberra and is aimed at helping pre-schools develop problem-solving skills to set them up for life.
Peter Friend, a teacher at the Granville centre said most recently the students were learning about patterns and relationships, how to order things and put things in sequences.
"It's all incorporated into the apps," Mr Friends said.
During the program, four apps will be released that will introduce the children to different areas of maths and science. In the meantime, Mr Friend is also developing his own activities to keep the children entertained and learning.
That includes making patterns with Lego.
"Lego is a huge focus, the kids love it," he said.
"They don't realise they're actually learning to do patterns, they're just playing with their blocks."
Mr Friend also gives the children plastic cutlery so they can sort it into groups.
He said learning maths and science was important for every child.
"The jobs the kids will have when they leave school don't even exist at the moment," he said.
Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien said children who explored science, technology, engineering and maths through age-appropriate play and experiments would have a head-start in life.
He said the program would develop children's curiosity.
"Children are naturally inquisitive and questioning and love to explore the world around them," Mr O'Brien said.
I believe ELSA's STEM program will encourage and develop this curiosity into a lifelong interest and grow their capacity to cope in our ever-expanding digital world."