Samantha Reynolds (HOD Arts and Applied Technology and Business at Saint Stephen’s College) and I discussed how innovation is facilitated through ‘Enterprise Skills’ within 21st century education. This insightful and new-age approach to education follows best practice techniques from around the world. The conversation uncovers answers to questions such as - What are enterprise skills? (hint: design thinking, collaboration, resilience, presentation… to name a few!). Why are they imperative within 21st century education? How can it be effectively be facilitated in the classroom? As well as advice for educators and schools on embedding these vital skills into their delivery. This insightful episode full of useful knowledge is perfect for 21st century educators in finding a roadmap on how to lead, best practice in their classroom.
Samantha has been Head of Arts and Applied Technology and Business at Saint Stephen’s College for the past eleven years and Design Syllabus Writer for Queensland Curriculum Assessment Authority (QCAA) for three years and Graphics Panel member for QCAA for eight years. She currently manages twenty-one subjects across Prep to Year 12. She is also one of the Finalist for the Australian Education Teacher of the Year Awards for 2019, 2019 Women in Business Futurist of the year runner up for WIB Innovation Technology Award.
She has been credited to the implementation of many innovative programs and awards at the College including the development of Enterprise Education, STEAM and interdisciplinary projects, many of which have been running for over a decade.
Samantha initiated a multidisciplinary approach to teaching; one initiative blending 7 subjects into one final project. This interdisciplinary approach enabled her to scope future courses that allows students to achieve an ATAR under the umbrella of Enterprise Education and is currently working on providing a dedicated campus for this. She focuses her teaching on what she calls ‘pracademia’ and engages extensively with the broader community, in order to provide the students with the opportunity to make connections now and in their futures.
She has consulted texts for Cengage Publishers, delivered Syllabus workshops for all teachers in Queensland and currently working with QUT, Bond University and Griffith University particularly on the links and transitions between Senior School and University and Teacher Professional Development. She is currently collaborating with Griffith University, developing new programs on STEAM education and Design Thinking Education for Bachelor of Education and Master of Teaching Students. This has involved running a number of workshops in an incubator hub and a series of podcasts and shares techniques of teaching through her LinkedIn Page.
Most recently she was invited as a Keynote Speaker at the Next Generation Learning Space Design and at The School Planning, Design & Construction Summit in Melbourne presenting as exemplary examples of teaching pedagogy in a hybrid and open plan classroom. Samantha was the only school teacher represented at this conference; presenting her teaching pedagogy to the top universities from Australia, Singapore and Malaysia. She is also regularly invited as an industry leader to Griffith University Creative Summits, Bond University BUFTA and Bond Business School.
As Head of Arts and Applied Technologies and Business, Samantha’s management of subjects extending across P-12, including 9 staff and over 795 students. The suite of subjects includes Visual Art, Design, Media, Film and Television, Graphics, Business, Enterprise and Vocational Education and Training, all of which she actively teaches and develops courses for. She endeavours to embed real-world application into each and every one of the courses she has developed; most of which also include an interdisciplinary approach. Assessment is developed and written each year for the individual cohort and individually for students with special needs.
Her students are encouraged to be innovators through critical thinking, creative thinking, communication, collaboration and teamwork personal and social skills with a balance of ICT skills. She facilitates her students through a discovery process; encouraging them to extend and push the boundaries of their own skill sets by striving for excellence. She prides herself on showing her students by doing herself and wants to share her knowledge as she believes she didn’t receive this support during her own schooling; she is a true “Pracademic”. In 2019, two of her Enterprise students won the Telstra Mayors Technology Award for an idea developed in her Future Millionaires Challenge.
(This episode was recorded online during the COVID-19 restrictions.)
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