Kirton Point Primary School hosted the final ‘train the trainers’ day for local primary school teachers on Wednesday to wrap up over 2.5 years of work on the YuMi mathematics program.
The pedagogy program was first developed by Queensland University of Technology’s (QUT) YuMi Deadly Centre and was originally designed to engage Indigenous students.
QUT researcher and YuMi trainer Kim Alexander said the program allows students to get out and about, and to see that numbers are everywhere.
“People ask ‘is it just for Indigenous students?’, and the answer is no it’s not, it’s for everyone,” she said.
“Some people are also worried that it isn’t going to cover the mathematics curriculum, but once they see it they realise it does.”
Mrs Alexander said these training days teach the teachers the program, but also allow them to adapt it to their students reality.
Brett Osborne’s Kirton Point class has been exploring indigenous fishing traps, fishing, crabbing, cooking and even burritos in their YuMi classes.
“In learning about YuMi, I’ve just realised maths is everywhere,” he said.
“Just by going and kicking a footy, you’ll have 100 possible maths questions for the kids.”
QUT researchers have visited the area nine times over the programs training to see how it is being implemented and taught.
Kirton Point teacher Anne Penna said her foundation class had been using the reality of their surroundings, such as magpies, Pitjantjatjara words and fruit skewers to incorporate the mathematics program.
“It reminds them that this is maths, you live with maths, and it’s a part of everything,” she said.
YuMi maths program is sponsorsed by CSIRO and BHP, meaning the training is provided free of charge to the local schools.