5 Oct 2023

Bridgette Bird

Innovation in Teaching

Bridgette Bird

Students at Kimberley Park State School (KPSS) have had the chance to get involved in engaging STEM programs thanks to TEACHX Innovation in Teaching award recipient Bridgette Bird.

Bridgette leads the STEM program at KPSS, enabling students of all year levels to thrive in a hands-on approach to STEM. For higher-achieving students in Years 4,5, and 6, she leads a specialised Pathway of Excellence in STEM program to promote student capacity to solve real-word problems.

“Having the capacity to create change is possibly the best thing about being a teacher, being able to positively affect student outcomes and make a difference in the way that they see themselves as learners,” she says.

Inspired by her time in a Itinerant Support Teacher for Behaviour role as a first year teacher, connections are at the core of Bridgette’s practice. She works tirelessly to promote student engagement through partnerships with The University of Queensland, Griffith University, Queensland’s Trust for Nature, and The Queensland Museum to name but a few.

These partnerships saw her support students in entering the 2022 Curiocity Media Launch at the Queensland Museum. Bridgette’s support saw three students from KPSS chosen as one of four winning teams, with their concept built and now on display at The Queensland Museum. Students have also benefitted from Bridgette’s organisation of the World of Science Conference and her mentorship of the teams through their research and presentation journeys.

“This year a team of Year 4 students and a team of Year 6 students won the Regional Conference for the University of Queensland Wonder of Science program. In November, for the sixth year they will be attending the State Conference to share their investigations.”

Not content with connections with students and industry partners, Bridgette is an active member of the STEM network, a reflection of her ongoing commitment upskilling her colleagues and providing access to the most up-to-date teaching practices. Currently, Bridgette is in talks with contacts from Questacon in supporting a visit to provide teachers throughout the STEM network professional development opportunities.

“A good day in the classroom is framed with student-led creativity and opportunities for perseverance, experimentation and sharing of ideas.”