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STEM professional development webinars

Webinar series

STEM HOUR: Connect, grow, learn

In this monthly webinar series, Little Scientists hosts panel discussions with experts and leaders from different fields. Our guests take you on a journey through their field and link their passion to yours, connecting STEM with early childhood education.

You can attend each episode live or watch a recording later.
Cost: $25 per session

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 23rd April

Citizen Science in early childhood education

Children can conduct scientific research just like adult scientists and this event proves it. Citizen Science Month celebrates the contribution every single person can make to answering big and small questions about the world.

Erin Roger from the Australian Citizen Science Association, Nadiah Roslan from the Australian Museum and environmental educator Maria Dunne will tell us how everyone can think and act like a scientist and provide us with hands-on ideas for citizen science projects suitable for our age group.

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 17th May

Bee kind. Learning about bees in early childhood

Did you know that bees are amazing mathematicians? Did you know that without bees half the produce would disappear from our supermarkets?

As part of World Bee Day, Kelly Lees from the NSW Department of Primary Industries will share astonishing facts about bees, primary school teacher Vanessa Ryan-Rendall will speak about her children’s book Bee Detectives and Claudia Brewin and Emilia Borrillo from Nido Early School in Kensington, South Australia, will speak about the school’s award-winning project ‘The wonder of bees’.

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 3rd June

Enriching early childhood with Indigenous knowledge

Researching and inquiring for more than 60,000 years, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures have collected an abundance of complex STEM knowledge and play an essential role in addressing the biggest scientific questions of today, such as food security and climate change. Dr Michael Donovan from Macquarie University and Bio-cultural Science Educator Torres Webb will spark ideas for respectful and meaningful implementation of Indigenous STEM knowledge into early childhood settings. The webinar will also provide examples of Indigenous science concepts that kindle children’s excitement.

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 16th July

Exploring Bush Tucker

What comes to mind when we think about Australian cuisine? There are few things more Aussie than meat pies and the good old barbie. In our July webinar, we will celebrate food that has been here for thousands of years, much longer than the sausage sizzle: Bush Tucker.

Join us on a journey back in time when wattle seed, river mint and kakadu plum nourished generation after generation. Our webinar panel will share ideas on how to include native plants in inquiry-based STEM learning in early childhood settings and discuss why we don’t see more native foods commercially available.

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 16th August

Food for thought – philosophical inquiry with children

How does a cow turn into a sausage?”; “Why is it ok to eat cows but not whales?; “Can I send my sandwich to a child who’s really hungry?”

As part of National Science Week, our webinar panel will discuss how children’s critical questions can be addressed in an honest and age-appropriate way that encourages further inquiry and supports a constructive world view. Focusing on philosophical inquiry and critical thinking in early childhood settings, our panel of experts will share ideas for critical reflection on the food we eat: Where does it come from? How is it made? Do all families eat the same foods?

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 7th September

Our animals are in danger! Protect our wildlife

The children’s book Hairy Nose, Itchy Butt light-heartedly addresses a serious problem, the struggles of the critically endangered Northern hairy-nosed wombat.

The isolation of Australian wildlife for thousands of years has made our animals even more vulnerable to changes to the ecosystem and as a result many Australian species are endangered or have already become extinct. As part of Threatened Species Day, our panel will share why our fauna is in danger and what we, our children and the entire Australian society can and must do to protect our wildlife.

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 8th October

Women in space – female STEM role models

Since the beginning of space travel, only 11.5% of astronauts have been female. Asked to draw a scientist, two thirds of primary school children will draw a man in a white lab coat. In Australia, only 35% of STEM university degrees are awarded to women.

As part of World Space Week, we will ask female astronomers why they pursued a career in STEM, what we can do to prevent gender bias in young children and what needs to happen to create a world where girls and boys alike can reach for the stars.

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 12th November

Education for Sustainability Part 1: Tackling climate change with children

Is climate change relevant to our children? Or is the topic too complex and too hard to grasp? Rather than wondering if a topic is suitable, we could ask ourselves: How can we make it suitable? Our children will have to deal with the effects of climate change and the least we can do is prepare them for the tough job ahead.

As the UN decides on further measures for reaching zero emissions, our panel will discuss age-appropriate ways to explore the effects of climate change on our planet and will help us provide answers to children’s questions about climate change.

STEM hour | 11am AEDT - 10th December

Education for Sustainability Part 2: Children’s rights and responsibilities

In Australia, 86 animal species are considered critically endangered and natural ecosystems worldwide are getting smaller and smaller – all largely as a result of human actions. The decisions we make today will inevitably impact our children’s future.

Considering what’s at stake for future generations, are we paying enough attention to our children? Are their voices being heard? Are we teaching them to express themselves and to participate as active citizens? As part of Human Rights Day, our panel will be discussing children’s right to actively participate in critical matters such as sustainability and how we can prepare children for the task ahead.

Webinar series

INSPIRE STEM: Explore, play, reflect

STEM education is so much more than factual answers to complex questions and Little Scientists will show you how easy and uncomplicated it can be. In a series of three live webinars, Little Scientists will introduce the concepts, methods and skills to early childhood teachers and educators. We will show you some simple techniques to cultivate children’s skills and excitement for STEM exploration, and our hands-on session will enrich your repertoire of STEM activities.

This series includes 3 webinars each, held 4pm-5pm. 
Download flyer: Inspire STEM: Explore, Play, Reflect [pdf]

Teacher accreditation…

Completing the Inspire STEM Webinar Series – ONLINE before 31 July 2021 under NESA’s interim arrangements will contribute 3 hours of NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) Accredited PD in the priority area of Delivery and assessment of Early Years Learning Framework addressing standard descriptors 2.1.2, 3.3.2, 6.2.2 from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining Proficient Teacher Accreditation in NSW.

Completing this online webinar series will contribute 3 hours for online workshops of ACT Teacher Quality Institute (TQI) registered PD.

Inspire STEM | 4, 5, 10 May (3 part series)

Explore space, play, reflect

Come explore space with us, from earth to the beyond. Hands on, inquiry-based STEM to inspire and delight. Linked to the EYLF, NESA and TQI accredited and coming to a galaxy near you.

Young children are filled with questions about the world they live in: “Can you blow bubbles in Space?” “What’s the moon made of?” “Why do astronauts float?”– Have you ever wondered how to answer their big questions?

Inspire STEM | 9, 10, 13 August (3 part series)

Morning tea

Inspired by the topic of National Science Week, Food: different by design, we are putting on a STEM morning tea. How loud is your sip and crunch? What effect does smell have on your taste buds? You were told to never play with your food but join us for a hands-on, play-based, inquiry-led investigation into food.

Children enjoy exploring food and have so many questions about it: “What’s in a sip?” “What colour tastes the best?” Have you ever wondered how to answer these questions? We will unpack STEM food for you.

Inspire STEM | 11, 12, 18 October (3 part series)

At home among the gum leaves

Come and investigate with us the creatures that call Australia home and their habitats. Full of practical, hands on advice on creation of habitats in an early childhood setting, investigations into animal adaptations to Australian conditions with musical and literacy links.

“What the difference between a reptile, mammal and bird? What’s a monotreme or marsupial? Why is wombat poo cubic? “- Young children are filled with questions about the world they live in: Have you ever wondered how to answer their big questions?