Our Kleenheat Community Grants program is supporting local groups, charities, and not-for-profit organisations doing great things in communities across regional Western Australia and the Northern Territory.
One of the five Grants categories Inspiring Bright Minds, rewarded groups that focussed on helping our big-thinkers turn bright ideas into positive change. It doesn’t matter who we are, where we live, or what we do – a curious mind and creative thinking can open up a new world of possibilities.
STEM is receiving greater interest in schools and extra-curricular programs as awareness grows around inspiring and encouraging children and young adults to explore studying and working in STEM-related fields.
The Tuart Forest Primary School P&C play an important role in keeping students inspired and engaged in learning and STEM-related activities. They received a $1,000 Kleenheat Community Grant so that they could purchase a VEX IQ Robotics Superkit. VEX IQ is a snap-together robotics system, suitable for primary-aged children.
P&C’s supporting the STEM-related learning in our schools
The importance of P&C Committees in our community and in our schools.
As many schools have limited funding for extracurricular activities, the P&C Committees tend to help raise money to provide extra resources so they don’t have to go without. In addition, P&C’s add value to parents and the school as they actively liaise with parents and teachers to ensure children are receiving the best education.
Since 2013, the Tuart Forest Primary School Parents and Citizens Association have been organising and assisting in fundraising activities so that vital resources can be sourced for the school.
Fundraising activities vary between novelty and fun, educational and active, with previous fundraisers contributing to additional books for the library, a school playground, shade trees, school disco’s, Mother’s and Fathers’ Day stalls, and uniform subsidies.
How did the Club use the $1,000 Kleenheat Community Grant?
The Kleenheat Community Grant was used to purchase a new VEX IQ Superkit, plus competition add-on equipment. This Superkit supplements the existing seven robots purchased by Tuart Forest Primary School in previous years as part of the Collie Preston Schools’ Network Robotics program.
The VEX Robotics competition is an exciting experience as the students compete against each other and other schools in the district. Students also have the chance to go to national as well as international competitions, which is made possible via zoom.
In September 2021, the Tuart Forest Primary School students took part in the 4thannual Collie Preston Cup using the robot purchased with the Kleenheat Grant.
The importance of STEM related activities in education
With the addition of a new VEX IQ Superkit and the extra competition equipment, Tuart Forest Primary School now has a class-set of 8 Superkits. These kits provide students with a hands-on, interactive experience with concepts being learnt in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) learning areas.
Technically difficult concepts like ratios are brought to life through gearing mechanisms and pulley arrangements so that different methods of powering and steering a four, or even six-wheeled vehicle can also be explored.
The kits have pre-designed examples for students to build, but once students have gained an understanding of how the modular parts of the kits fit together, any creation is possible.
The Kleenheat grant enabled the purchase of some extra VEX IQ components such as multi-directional wheels and tank tracks. Students have not used these components in the robotics program before.
Through their use they will develop further understandings of how simple machines can connect together to form complex machines. This understanding will be put to use in designing two robots to take part in the local interschool robotics competition. The hope is that in the future, students from within the local network will be able to enter their robots into the national VEX IQ Challenge competition.
How to join your local P&C
Joining your child’s schools P&C is typically very simple and encouraged. For those interested in joining the Tuart Forest Primary School P&C, a simple form needs to be completed and fee of $1 is payable.
Being involved in a P&C allows parents to vote and voice their opinions through regular meetings and at AGM’s regarding where school funds are spent and how it will best benefit the student’s education.
P&C committees are typically formal, but realistic in their agenda, encouraging working parents and single parents to attend with flexible meetings times and venues.
Register your interest in a Kleenheat Community Grant now
Stay tuned for our next round of Kleenheat Community Grants, commencing in October 2021.
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