Mrs Anita Trenwith, Prime Minister's Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools



I love keeping students guessing they expect one result and get something completely different and then seeing them actually work out why they got that different results that's something that I find really rewarding I've always had an innate desire to teach even as a child if I learned something I would teach it to someone else and I've always loved science but I couldn't see myself working in a laboratory environment so it was as logical progression to combine my passion for science with my desire to teach Salisbury High School is a northern suburbs school we have just under a thousand students my classrooms are usually noisy because I encourage students to talk to each other sometimes they might be a bit worried about asking me a question in front of everybody but they'll quite happily ask their peers I like my classrooms to be active and having students out of their chairs and getting involved with the science we have approximately 50 students in the special education unit and they have a mixture of disabilities such as intellectual disabilities physical disabilities we have autistic students students with Down syndrome so we've got a real mixture within that group I think they need to be given the same opportunities as mainstream students so that they can learn about the wonders of science agriculture came about as a subject that was driven by a student desire to be outdoors we work with horses we learn about cropping we also look at some Studies on sheep and cattle and some farming livestock last year agriculture was a trial class and it was so successful this year when we ran it we had 86 percent of the students choosing agriculture as their first choice my ideal future for the agriculture subject is to actually see some students getting their skills in fencing and their skills in tractor driving and their skills in managing crops and understanding that to a point where they can actually get seasonal work and employment as Jilla rougeau crews working on farms we have students have been running science shows we've also had students presenting at a number of school holiday care sessions so science has evolved from being just within our own classroom to actually being out in the community a lot more in special education I love teaching I'll always want to be in a classroom but one of the things I'm very passionate about personally is working with early career teachers to ensure that science teachers have the opportunity to develop their skills to make their science as interesting as possible in their own classroom we need to understand a little bit of science to make educated decisions about things that are happening in our lives

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