Applied Learning Programme (ALP)
Focus Area: Science. Technology. Engineering. Mathematics (Sustainability)
TEACHING AND LEARNING APPROACH
Sustainability is the heart of the Applied Learning Programme in NSPS. In NSPS, North Springers have the Maker’s Sustainability (M.A.S.S.) Education Programme where they adopt the design thinking maker’s approach to innovate and create solutions to contribute to a sustainable future for Mother Earth. The modified design thinking approach shown below fosters a culture of empathy, resilience, and innovation, and is a process which seeks to develop values and skills not only towards the care of the environment, but towards all areas in life.
Empathise Identify Problem Ideate Create
Modified design thinking approach for M.A.S.S. Education
Learning Experiences and Activities
M.A.S.S. Education leverages on three platforms:
- Whole-school events and programmes
- Curriculum subject activities
- Tier 2 Science Explorers CCA Club advocates and Science Champions
Whole- school events and programmes
Term 1: World Water Day featuring plastic pollution / climate change
World Water Day is an annual United Nations observance day that highlights the importance of fresh water. The day is used to advocate for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. In NSPS, we celebrate with learning about climate change and plastic pollution from guest speakers from TERRA SG and local book author Hwee Goh giving assembly talks about climate change and plastic pollution. There were also fun classroom and recess activities / competitions to allow North Springers to learn by playing !
Term 2: Earth Day commemorated during Math-Science week
Earth Day is an annual global event to demonstrate support for environmental protection. In NSPS, we celebrate Earth Day during Math-Science week. North Springers are exposed to assembly, class and recess activities which helps them to apply both math and science knowledge and skills to solve problems.
Term 3: Youth for environment week
The focus of this event is centered around mobilizing North Springers for climate action. During this event, canteen stall owners contribute food waste and students use this food waste to make eco-enzymes. These eco-enzymes are eventually used as eco-cleansers for wipe-down. Food waste was also made into compost using food digesters.
Save our Waste (S.O.W.) Programme
Save Our Waste (S.O.W.) Programme is a school-wide programme where both staff and students adopt a hands-on approach to contribute to a sustainable future.
Part 1: Recycling paper and plastic waste
Starting from Term 1, in conjunction with the National Environment Agency’s campaign to Recycle Right, recycling bins for paper and plastic waste were made available for every class. Student leaders, class monitors and science champions, monitor the amount of paper and plastic waste collected by their classes and bring them to the canteen to weigh in the amount collected. These weigh-ins from the classes contribute to the total amount recycled by the school per month. Monthly updates of the amount of paper and plastics waste collected is done before flag-raising ceremony, where recycling facts are also shared with the school.
Due to our recycling efforts, NSPS has been featured on the NEA Recycle Right Facebook page
Part 2: Recycling food waste
NSPS embarked on food waste recycling during Math-Science week. Composters were placed in the canteen next to the plate collection area. Science Champions and Science Explorer CCA Club members were stationed at the food composters during recess to advocate for food waste recycling. North Springers and canteen vendors disposed of their food waste into the composters. The composters then processed the food waste to produce plant compost in a few hours. These compost is used as fertilizers to grow edible plants in pots arranged in the N-S-P-S form; proof that NSPS is pledging to do our part for the environment. As one of the Math-Science week recess booth activities, North Springers were challenged to guess the amount of compost required to fill all the pots needed to form the letters N-S-P-S.
With sufficient compost, the Science Explorer CCA Club members will proceed to grow the edible vegetables
The EPIC design thinking approach in M.A.S.S. Education is infused into the different subjects using different engaging activities.
Caterpillar observatory for the P2 English Stellar unit : A butterfly is born
As the P2 students learn the grammar and vocabulary terms in this English Stellar unit, they are given the opportunity to observe live butterflies in the larva (caterpillar) stage. They record their observations in the stellar worksheets and also learnt about the importance of butterflies in upkeeping the diversity of floral species in the world. It is not easy to rear caterpillars to adulthood. The P2 classes applied the EPIC thinking model and went through a few failures before they finally succeeded in helping the butterflies get to adulthood and release them back into the wild. The P2 students also use this opportunity to study the life cycle of the butterfly, which kickstarts their learning of Science.
Building a Sustainable City using 3D pens for P4 Math: Angles and Shapes
P4 Math classes brainstorm about what a sustainable city looks like and make it come to life using 3D pens. The EPIC thinking model helps them to apply their knowledge about the world now and what they have in mind for a sustainable city before they work in groups to create the 3D models of their sustainable city in their minds.
Using recyclables to apply Science concepts / ideas to promote sustainability
In Science, North Springers learn the deeper details of why the environment needs to be preserved. The EPIC thinking model also helps them in the application of their Science knowledge to create innovative objects which suits their purpose.
3R posters and toys to promote the cause. In the spirit of upcycling, North Springers use recyclables to build models to show their understanding of Science taught in the classrooms.
P4 students also have a hydroponics system in their class. A pilot project to allow students to use their hands to actively promote sustainability by growing their own vegetables right in their classrooms. The vegetables are harvested and brought home to cook delicious dishes. A similar project is conducted in the P3 class where P3 students each have a mushroom growing kit.
Purposeful Authentic Learning
Tier 2: Science Explorers CCA Club advocates and Science Champions
The science explorers cca club members and the science champs are a small group of North Springers who are privileged and selected to dive deeper into M.A.S.S. Education.
Science Explorer CCA Club members, being passionate advocates of Science, focuses on acquiring skills to become spokespersons for MASS Education. Using the EPIC design thinking approach, Science explorers embark on hands-on projects such as building a dream school using recyclables. They also engage in Science Center: Young Sustainability card activities and make posters to advocate the sustainability movement.
Science Explorer Club members and Science Champions also learn about the importance of recycling food waste using food digesters through a 2 hour workshop. This equips them with knowledge to advocate the importance of food waste recycling and champion this cause during the S.O.W. food waste recycling programme.
Teacher’s education play an important role in the process of culture setting. Hence to promote the culture of M.A.S.S Education, teachers go through engaging professional training workshops to experience Maker’s Education first-hand.
Maker’s Education Professional Development