Agriculture. Smithton High School has once again excelled in Dairy Australia’s Cows Create Careers program.
The school was named the top senior school in the north west region while two individual teams also placed at a presentation day in Burnie recently.
Raising calves Dim and Sim, 45 grade nine students have taken part in the term four project with individual teams Early Risers and Nippy’s receiving first and third honours respectively at the ceremony.
Grade 9/10 Applied Science teacher Sarah Prior says the initiative has opened opportunities to students who previously wouldn’t have considered a career in the industry.
“The program basically aligns with the Australian National Curriculum in the biology strand,” she said.
“So we’ve made sure we’re covering all content in Cows Create Careers so that it really adds to the curriculum.”
Students were set the task of rearing the two calves and were responsible for monitoring and recording their general health and wellbeing, heart rate, hygiene and surrounding environment observations.
Using this data, students compiled a scientific report, produced displays of their findings and wrote a letter of thanks to Dairy Australia.
Mrs Prior says the initiative highlights Circular Head’s agricultural industry.
“It’s all really relevant information to the region,” she said.
“So many jobs are created because of this industry, it’s really quite unique and really special.”
She said the hands on approach is more likely to entice students to delve into the industry and retain the knowledge.
“As a science teacher we’re able to do so much more because of that program, we can really make this school excel.
“What we’ve got we’re making the most of. Utilising the outdoors and the very fact that we can have a school farm, it’s awesome.
“Now that we have momentum behind it, the kids really look forward to [Cows Create Careers] each year.”
As part of their research the grade will take part in an excursion to the van Adrichems’ robotic dairy at Togari and the Edith Creek Murray Goulburn factory at the end of the month.
Mrs Prior said the program would not be possible without fellow teacher Josh Smith and dairy advocate Leigh Schuuring.