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Technology and Applied Studies

Technology and an understanding of the design processes enable people to manage, interpret, shape and alter their environment to improve their quality of life at home, school, in work places and in the broader community. The rapid rate of technological change in an increasingly knowledge based society highlights the need for flexible technological capacity, innovative thinking and effective communication skills. The St Clare’s TAS faculty attempts to integrate technology education with both procedural and conceptual knowledge based on a holistic view of design and practical applications. Students identify needs that have personal relevance, apply design theory and use design processes that encourage flexibility, resourcefulness and imagination in the development, communication and production of quality solutions. Technology and an understanding of design processes enable students to manage, interpret, shape and alter their environment to improve their quality of life at home, school, in work places and in the broader community. The rapid rate of technological change in an increasingly knowledge-based society highlights the need for flexible technological capability, innovative thinking and effective communication skills. The recent developments in STEM education point us all to a future where technological capabilities will be a prerequisite to work.

Students learn about technologies and use a range of materials, tools and techniques relevant to the personal, commercial and global areas of human activity. Technologies assume increased importance when they are applied to solve real problems and to create ideas and solutions in response to needs and opportunities for customers, clients or themselves. They can be used to add functional, aesthetic and environmental value to products.

Thinking skills are developed experientially through the Technology (Mandatory) course as students design and make. The use of reflective, flexible and creative thinking skills are encouraged to build understanding of underlying principles that can be transferred to different project settings and applications. Study in Technology develops skills in enterprise and initiative. Through practical experience it leads students to develop, select and apply technological skills involved in designing and producing. This includes processes of analysing, planning, producing, evaluating and maintaining the material and information needs of our society. Technology (Mandatory) builds on Science and Technology K–6 and is the foundation course in Secondary education that provides broad experience in a range of contexts that can be further explored in Technology elective courses 7–10 and Stage 6.

Students will be given opportunities to learn how to function safely in a working environment and in a society driven by rapid technological change, communication and in a global society with increasingly competitive knowledge-driven economies.

The capacity to solve problems and generate ideas through the use of new conceptual approaches, models, drawings and information and communication technologies, and the ability to develop, produce and implement quality solutions are keys to technological competence. These know-why and know-how capabilities often distinguish leading companies, innovators and regions from their competitors.

Faculty Aim

The aim of TAS is to develop in all students the values and attitudes, skills, and knowledge and understanding that: Students can further develop a fascination with, and enjoyment of, innovating and creating through making decisions and in their production of working solutions. They will experience a core of design processes and technological experiences. In the broader community, the application of this process can involve the consideration of factors relating to organisations, people, environments, sustainability, appropriateness, materials, machines and equipment, systems, communication infrastructures, social and ethical solutions.

Catholic Perspective

Pastoral Care philosophy is central to all core business of the TAS faculty and aims to lead students to work within a restorative justice framework. It is characterised by a responsive and supportive pastoral care network involving pastoral care teachers, classroom teachers, year coordinators, a pastoral field officer, school counsellor, school chaplain, the school executive, students, parents and wider community support groups and agencies.

Our Mission: The Education of young people within the context of Christ’s mission and the traditions of St Clare and the Sisters of St Joseph.

Our Vision: Catholic community that values and nurtures learning for all life.

Our Belief: Community, Relationships and Teaching and Learning for all life.

Our Motto: All for Christ.

ICT Competencies

Information and communication technologies are made available to students through a network of computers accessed through rooms 21 and room 22 the specialized graphics/technology room 31 that has recently been upgraded in computer technology 2015. Due to the laptop rollouts in yr10, yr.11 and yr12 students have wireless access in class. Students are shown examples of computer aided machining and industrial processes. Online “onguard” WHS testing is accessed for all practical classes. All students access CAD graphics opportunities in mandatory technology through the Graphics unit. Programs such as Auto Cad, Google sketch up, Adobe fireworks photo shop, Inventor pro CAD graphics suite for Graphics Technology students. Smart board technology and interactive computer technology is available in multiple rooms. The establishment of the school portal, one note and internet researching and online communication is now a fully integrated aspect of theory and design. With the integration of STEM into junior electives we will access robotics technologies, programming and coding.

Email / Internet. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) at St. Clare’s includes both internet access and email usage. All computers at school are linked to the network controlled centrally by the CSO. The use of this technology by both students and staff is considered a privilege and users are urged to ensure that their professional and personal behaviour in relation to ICT use is consistent with the contents of the school policy: “Acceptable Use for Email, Internet & Network Usage at St. Clare’s High School”

Work Health and Safety

Industrial Technology, Wood, Metal. Mandatory Technology.
St Clare’s TAS faculty responds to the role of WorkCover and the WH&S Act in the workplace. We work to be able to identify a range of potential hazards and methods of controlling them. Work place Health and Safety WH&S in the workplace is a serious consideration for employers as well as employees. It covers a range of situations, for example:

  • Use of plant equipment.
  • Hazardous substances.
  • Working conditions ( lighting, fume extraction, heat and dust)
  • Bullying and stress.

The WH&S Act 2013 and the WH&S Regulation 2013, detail mandatory laws and procedures to be implemented in every workplace to protect the health and safety of workers, students and visitors.

Work Cover NSW is the Government body that administers the WH&S Act and enforces regulations. Inspectors can visit workplaces at random to check for breaches of the Act. Work cover also investigates workplace accidents and has the power to impose fines and to prosecute employers and workers for breaches that lead to accidents. According to the Act, it is the responsibility of both an employer and the employee to ensure a safe and healthy workplace for all workers.

The TAS Material Safety Data Sheets are compiled kept in the central Work Health and Safety Cabinet in the main staff room, under chemical safety manifests, as well as a copy in each practical room. All chemical substances are kept in a fire proof steel cabinet. All fire safety equipment is placed and procedures are inducted with students. Evacuation procedures, lock downs, are all simulated on a school wide basis. Evacuation details are inducted to students and general assembly evacuation points are noted. Each student must wear eye protection, apron and leather upper shoes. Hearing protection is provided and available to students. All hair must be tied back and loose clothing secured before work commences. An initial risk assessment should take place before every class and responded to accordingly. All new rooms are equipped with dust extraction. All signage is highly visible and as the new facility is still to be handed over a signage audit will take place to identify signage needs and responsibilities. All students follow a four stage safety induction into the practical rooms and machine processes. All staff are appropriately trained.

1. Students do the Onguard online tests.
2. Each specialised class does a written safety booklet and discuss processes with teacher.
3. Teachers demonstrate and provide an induction to machinery as an ongoing process. Teachers and students risk assess, identify and respond to eliminate or reduce risk to acceptable levels.
4. Each student demonstrates competency to the teacher before use.

TAS teaching staff undergo audiometric testing at recommended intervals. Staff indicate to the school when this testing has been completed and keep there own records of results. All machinery in the new facility will undergo a decibel test and a record will be noted in the faculty handbook. Workcover guidelines will be addressed to assess if acceptable noise levels are within range. Teachers and students can access the WHS registers to register an incident or complaint. This can be done online or through the WHS officer David Hutchison.

INCLUSION OF CROSS CURRICULUM CONTENT (Stage 4 & 5)

The TAS department works very closely with all faculties but specifically with the special needs dept. The establishment of a literacy based intensive literacy intervention program is supported and enhanced through our department. The delivery of course to various life skills students is a significant variation given the OHS implications. The Lexia learning, computer use and theory based learning is re-enforced through regular class writing tasks, explicit teaching of writing skills and standards referenced research and writing assignment notifications and assessment marking feedback sheets. The aim is to deliver literacy intervention more efficiently, with consistency and rigor. All assessment notifications are now modeled in a manner reflecting curriculum differentiation models and inclusive practices. Vocab lists and completion modeling is standard practice now. Numeracy is central to many aspects of design application and technology based subjects. The calculation of formula and measurements of lengths is documented and recorded with explicit Australian standards and building, engineering codes in mind. NAPLAN testing practice uses subject specific themes that aim to support literacy and numeracy development and consolidation and format standards. Establishment of STEM is a collaboration between Mathematics, Science and TAS. The TAS faculty is leading this collaboration.

Special Needs

Students with either learning or physical difficulties are identified and special provisions are adopted to accommodate individual requirements. During assessment tasks identified students (in accordance with BOS guidelines) are given extra time, and/or the assistance of a reader and/or writer. The TLF in consultation with Studies Co-ordinators when required identify students who are to study Life Skills in Stage 5 and 6. These students follow a modified program and are assisted by a teacher’s aide in the classroom situation. Assessment for these students is in accordance with the BOS requirements.

In year 7 and 8 students identified by the TLF are given extra care and assistance to help in overcoming possible difficulties. Information and data is collected from the feeder schools prior to the students starting in year 7. Students who are not initially identified by feeder schools, who experience difficulty during their study may be recommended to undergo testing to identify learning difficulties. Where learning difficulties are identified these students can apply for special provisions.

The TLF and teacher’s aides are available to assist the teaching staff in organising the students with special needs specifically in the practical areas of study.

Indigenous

The incorporation of Aboriginal Perspective in teaching programs is essential to promote self –esteem which is vital to successful learning and to prevent possible alienation of aboriginal students. As the reconciliation process continues, we can support this through educating all students about the culture and heritage of Aboriginal Australia. The CSO’s Aboriginal Education Statement encourages us to be aware of issues affecting Aboriginal people. The TAS Faculty aims to foster an Aboriginal Perspective in as many units of work as possible. In line with the School policy, we need to foster and support Recognition, Provision, Awareness raising, Understanding and Consultation. Teachers need to inform themselves about the nature of the Aboriginal Learner and appropriate teaching practices. The TAS teachers need to be sensitive to non-verbal communication used in aboriginal communities. TAS explicitly fosters the promotion of indigenous issues through the implementation of, the Aboriginal reconciliation Garden. The Aboriginal Reconciliation Garden aims to be a visible symbol for Reconciliation incorporating efforts from both the St. Clare’s School Community and the traditional owners being the Biripi/Worimi nations. The TAS faculty built and maintains this place in the school. We work closely with Michelle Case and Sandy Robison who are our Aboriginal Liaison Teachers.

Homework

Supplementary to the school policy on homework, the following guidelines are provided for TAS classes. Homework may be defined as specific tasks set, the completion of unfinished classwork, assignment work and examination/study preparation. Given a five period day, and the school HW policy of: “1 hour for Year 7 increasing to 2 hours for Year 10” and “about 3 hours for seniors”, TAS homework should be approx.
* 10 – 15 minutes for Years 7 & 8 per lesson
* 20 - 25 minutes for Years 9 & 10 per lesson
* 35 – 40 minutes for Years 11 & 12 per lesson.

How the Faculty Operates

In 2015 the TAS faculty will also take responsibility for Textiles and Food classes as part of our areas of responsibility. The Faculty has grown within, with an extra Metal technology elective class as well as extra Wood Technology elective class. We have also gone from 10 streams of Mandatory Technology to 12. The TAS faculty now has 14 staff. Studies Coordinator Mr. P.Chalmers, Mr. O’Neill, Ms. Avery, Miss O’Mara, Mr. Chapman, Mr. McGrath, Mrs. Gale, Mrs. Healey, Mr. Gonfond, Mr. Hutchinson, Mr. Carney, Mr. Gibney, Mrs McFarlane and Mr. Van Hilst.
BOS INDICATIVE HOURS OBSERVED.

The faculty delivers 200hrs of Mandatory Technology.
200hrs Technology Wood
200hrs Technology Graphics
200hrs Technology Metal
200hrs Food Technology
200hrs Textiles
200hrs Information & Software Technology.
240hrs Industrial Technology Wood
240hrs Textiles and Design
240hrs Food Technology
240hrs Engineering Studies and
240hrs VET Construction pathways.
240hrs Software Design and Development.

Integration of Numeracy and Literacy

Literacy

Through teaching TAS, students should be able to learn to:-

  • Locate and interpret information from a variety of sources
  • Sequence information
  • Understand and construct texts to achieve different purposes
  • Recognize grammatical uses of language (including verb tense, conjunctions etc.)
  • Write set tasks using appropriate structure, text organization and language features as well as correct spelling and punctuation
  • Distinguish between relevant and irrelevant information.

All of the above are covered by teachers throughout their lessons by close passages, videos, worksheets, summaries, text types, experiments, research.

Numeracy

Numeracy plays an important part in TAS. Students gather, record, process and present data. Concepts such as reading scales, measurements interpreting data and the appropriate use of measurement (instruments and units) are included in the TAS Curriculum. During the processing of all data, basic numerical skills are often used. These skills include addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

Interpretation and construction of graphs and tables are important skills. Students are helped to develop such skills throughout the courses.