Innisfail and Mourilyan pre-schoolers get head start in STEM


Pre-schoolers in the Innisfail region will be amongst the first in Australia to be introduced to science, technology, mathematics and engineering (STEM) through a new series of fun, play-based apps.

Northern based Government Senator Ian Macdonald said the Innisfail Community Preschool and Kindergarten and the Mourilyan District Kindergarten were part of 100 selected as part of the Turnbull Government’s innovative Early Learning STEM Australia (ELSA) pilot.

 “Congratulations to these two local kindergartens for being selected in the trial, and for their commitment to introducing pre-schoolers in the region to new and exciting learning opportunities,” Senator Macdonald said.

 Senator Macdonald said the first app in the series will introduce concepts of sorting, ordering, patterns and representations through activities including creating decorations and organising food onto different plates, with the theme of ‘celebration’.

 “We want to help children explore new ideas and skills in science, technology, engineering and maths that will in turn boost their literacy and numeracy.”

 The new $6million program will give the youngest learners the opportunity to develop numeracy skills and scientific curiosity that will set them up for the rest of their education, Senator Macdonald said.

“With employment trends showing 75 per cent of Australia’s fastest growing careers demand skills in digital literacy and STEM, it is wonderful to the curiosity of children in the Innisfail region being encouraged early in their development.”

 The announcement follows the success of the Turnbull Government’s Early Learning Languages Australia (ELLA) apps in introducing pre-schoolers right across the north, including the Innisfail Community Preschol, to a language other than English.

 Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham said independent analysis recently released showed the apps were effective in introducing new languages to preschool children, raising their awareness of other cultures, and engaging their interest in learning different languages.

 The ELSA pilot commences in Term 1 next year. For more information visit www.elsa.edu.au.

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