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Lynmore Primary School - Andrew Doyle

2019 | Science through a cultural lens

School: Lynmore Primary School

Host: Te Arawa Lakes Trust

Region: Bay of Plenty

The importance of science teaching is central at Lynmore Primary School. This is reflected by the fact that the improved quality and consistency of teaching science is a strategic goal at the school. Also within its Kāhui Ako the raising of levels of achievement and engagement in science is one of the four achievement challenges that are set out. Andrew Doyle is the first Lynmore Primary School teacher to partake in the Science Teaching Leadership Programme (STLP). The school sees this as a fantastic opportunity to further build their science leadership team and to ensure the Nature of Science and the Science Capabilities are the drivers of science teaching across the school.

 Andrew has had eight years of primary teaching experience, with the last five years at Lynmore Primary School. He has worked primarily at the senior school level dealing with a wide variety of abilities and cultural backgrounds. He has a background in history and politics, with a Bachelor of Arts. He is the science leader across his school, tasked with managing the science team to develop science teaching across the school. He is eager to see the Nature of Science to be central in science teaching and learning at Lynmore Primary School and for science to be a cornerstone of curriculum integration.

 Andrew is passionate about teaching science and enjoys using hands on activities, and the local natural environment, to engage and motivate his students. He uses the native bush to run programmes such as pest trapping, herb and vegetable growing, stream care and invasive plant containment. These activities have been seen to be highly popular and engaging.

 Andrew has been hosted by Nicki Douglas at Te Arawa Lakes Trust. His placement has involved working alongside the scientists and other stakeholders that Te Arawa Lakes Trust collaborate with on a range of projects around the Rotorua Lakes. This has given him the opportunity to get an holistic view of the lakes. He has had the chance to be on the lakes for multiple field trips including; kōura monitoring with a leading fresh water scientist using mātauranga Māori to gather data and water sampling with regional council to test the quality of the water. Working with these people and organisations has given Andrew a much greater understanding of the Rotorua Lakes and has allowed him to see the Nature of Science in action in real life scenarios.

 A highlight for Andrew has been working alongside William Anaru from Te Arawa Lakes Trust on the catfish problem. Catfish were first discovered in Lake Rotorua in December 2018 and Te Arawa Lakes Trust was tasked with trying to stop the spread of catfish into other lakes and to limit them to Lake Rotorua and Rotoiti. He had the opportunity to net catfish regularly and learn about the other life in the lakes and the multiple stressors that are on our native fish, in particular the kōura. He also saw how a local issue is able to engage the community and schools in science as Te Arawa Lakes Trust built up a volunteer network to help with the netting. The volunteers input their data into an app to gather a greater overview of the lake. True science engagement and participation.

The Science Leadership Programme has provided Andrew with an incredible professional learning journey. He is looking forward to applying what he has learnt to lead science at Lynmore School. He would like to thank the Royal Society Te Apārangi, Nicki Douglas, William Anaru and all the staff at Te Arawa Lakes Trust and Lynmore School for investing in him.