Cowra Public School leading the way

The inspirational Stage 3 students at this school completed a comprehensive action based learning unit on road safety education, with their teacher librarian, Sheridan Oborn leading the way.

Sheridan learned about meaningful student involvement and incorporating road safety into a whole-school approach after attending a Road safety education: Safer behaviours through PDHPE K-6 professional learning workshop on 30 March 2017. Hearing that road crashes are the highest cause of accidental death for children “profoundly affected” her, so she committed to making her lessons count.

Sheridan created a unit that integrated road safety education with PDHPE and other KLA’s, with the focus on developing effective ways to communicate road safety messages to the school community.

Students investigated road crash statistics, the Towards Zero campaign, each road user category (passenger, pedestrian, on wheels) and the key road safety messages.

Students chose a key message and developed their own communication strategy for a target audience of their choosing-kindergarten to year 4 classes. Some produced posters, whilst others made videos, 3D models and interactive presentations.

A really impressive project was by four girls who produced a detailed 3D model of their local area to use to teach about safe road user behaviours. The girls challenged younger students with various scenarios which were answered by acting out using the 3D model.

Their model is going to be entered into the local Recycled Art for Cowra Awards (RAFCA) later in the year!

Sheridan used the real traffic environment by taking her students to the school’s entry and exit points. She modelled correct use of the crossing, which students then practised. This promoted a great deal of student discussion, especially when a car didn’t stop and went straight through the crossing during the demonstration!

Students wrote a letter asking parents to “take care in our highest risk exit point of the school.” It was published in the school newsletter and submitted to the local paper. The students are eagerly waiting to see if it’s published!

The whole-school promotion continued with posters displayed around the school and models exhibited.

Their work didn’t occur in isolation, as students used the following skills to complete their task:

  • communicating, discussing, comprehending, composing, imaginative, creative and critical thinking, and reflective thinking (English)
  • collating, analysing, reasoning and measuring (Maths)
  • planning, designing and implementing (Science)
  • understanding and applying technology, communicating through technology (ICT)
  • creating art works for a variety of audiences, representing real world objects (CAPA)
  • problem solving, decision making, communicating and interacting (PDHPE)

Interestingly students who normally struggle academically were actively involved, experiencing success, e.g. shy students were developing speaking skills by interacting with the infants students.

Students also developed a greater appreciation of what teachers do!

Congratulations to Sheridan and all the stage 3 students at Cowra Public School.

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