Annual highlights and season’s greetings

Faye Boys, Master Teacher at Victoria Park State School, and staff from Poonindie Community Learning Centre enjoy lunch with YDC staff at QUT in October

As the year draws to a close we would like to share some highlights from 2018 and look ahead to what’s happening in 2019. The many highlights and achievements make this quite a long post, so grab yourself a cuppa and settle in!

The year at a glance

This year YDC has engaged with 78 schools to deliver intensive one-year and two-year YuMi Deadly Maths (YDM) training to more than 300 teachers, including 66 days of teacher professional development and 76 days of school visits in Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.

This training was provided through the following projects: PRIME Futures, AIM, MITI, YDM North Queensland and XLR8.

If you have been involved in YDM training this year, we hope it has given you valuable new skills or consolidated and extended the skills you already had.

Key research findings

Dr Alex Stuetz (third from left in photo above), YDC Senior Research Assistant, has worked hard all year collating and analysing data from evaluation forms, teacher and principal surveys, and teacher reflective journals.

The results show that teachers who have participated in the two-year YDM training have reported high levels of improved pedagogical skills and confidence in teaching mathematics, improved mathematical and Indigenous knowledge, and increased expectations of their students.

This enhanced teaching capacity has been reflected in principal surveys and in perceptions of high levels of improved student engagement, considerable improvement in student learning and understanding, better test results, and increased student interest in STEM subjects, pathways and careers.

Spreading the word

This year YDC staff have again been busy sharing research findings and best-practice maths education approaches through presentations and workshops at state, national and international conferences and expos, including:

  • Down Syndrome Association of Queensland annual conference
  • Queensland Association of Mathematics Teachers annual conference
  • South Australian Department for Education Inclusive Education Expo
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mathematics Alliance (ATSIMA) biennial conference
  • Education Queensland STEM Symposium
  • STEM in Education international conference
  • Mathematics Association of Victoria annual conference

And of course our own YDC Sharing Summit in October brought together 50 educators from 31 different schools and other organisations, with 25 inspiring presentations across two days.

CSIRO Indigenous STEM Awards

Eight applicants from five schools involved in YDC’s PRIME Futures project were finalists in the 2017 CSIRO Indigenous STEM Awards. We were delighted to hear in March 2018 that three of these – one teacher and two students – won their category.

In a tremendous effort, this year there were 12 PRIME Futures nominations for the 2018 awards and among these one school and three students have been selected as finalists. Congratulations to Thuringowa State High School from Cluster 2 in Townsville, a finalist in the School Award, and to the two students from Mount St Bernard College in Cluster 8 (Far North Queensland) and one student from Poonindie Community Learning Centre in Cluster 5 (Port Lincoln) who are finalists for the Student Maths Award.

Read about the CSIRO Indigenous STEM Award finalists

Rockville rocks!

Rockville State School in Toowoomba, Queensland, has been doing us proud in its role as a YDM Centre for Excellence this year. The school recently featured on Seven News in Toowoomba:

Hands-on maths program adds up

Congratulations to Principal Vicky Broderick and the team!

We would also like to thank Annandale State School in Townsville and Victoria Park State School in Mackay for their work in supporting and promoting YDM this year.

If you would like to talk directly to a school about YDM or see it in action, please contact us and we will put you in touch with one of these YDM Centre for Excellence schools.

Have you joined our Facebook group?

This year, the first six of the ten clusters involved in PRIME Futures completed their two (or more) years of YDM training workshops. The first cluster to finish was Cluster 1 based around Emerald in central Queensland, who came up with the wonderful idea of setting up a closed Facebook group for teachers who have participated in YDC projects across Australia.

The purpose of the Facebook group, called YuMi Deadly Teacher Connect, is to share news, ideas and resources that will help teachers to continue to embed and sustain the YDM approach in their classrooms. As of today’s date, the group has 151 members.

If you have participated in a YDC project and would like to join the group, simply search for the group name on Facebook (or click on the link above) and ask to join. Our administrators will confirm you are eligible and add you to the group.

What’s in store for 2019?

Next year will see the end of the four-year PRIME Futures program delivered by YDC and managed by CSIRO in partnership with the BHP Billiton Foundation, which has supported YDM training for 70 schools since late 2015. Clusters 7, 8, 9 and 10 will complete their training by June and all clusters will continue to receive support from YDC during this time.

We are very pleased that the YDM North Queensland cluster will be continuing next year, with a new cohort to start training in February 2019. As well as this, the AIM and MITI training that commenced this year will continue for schools located in Brisbane and Toowoomba.

If you would like to partner with YDC in a project or work with us to tailor a project for your school, please contact us.

And please stay tuned for news of the 2019 YDC Sharing Summit!

Season’s greetings

To everyone who has supported and partnered with us, thank you for your involvement with YDC projects and activities during 2018.

Have a safe and happy festive season and we look forward to working with you in the New Year.

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