Early Beginnings at the Redhill FFC


By: Philip Joubert

The Future has Arrived at the FFC

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The Future Focus Centre (FFC) was designed, and is being built as a model for the future direction of education. It was built along with cutting edge auxiliary facilities such as a new Science laboratory and a state-of-the-art auditorium. Excitement is building as we’ve now reached the final phase of the project – equipping the main interior space for 21st century learning.

South Africa is a relatively small country when it comes to the international technology arena. We simply cannot compete with the juggernauts of Asia and North America in terms of the volume of graduates and production capability, but the one area where South Africa shines is innovation. A unique culture and history of problem solving has meant that South Africa has lead the way in a number of scientific and technological innovations.

Our vision for the Future Focus Program is to create a hub of interactive learning spaces where design thinking, innovation and problem solving become the dominant culture of learning. The Future Focus Program plans to allow a child to engage with other learners in a collaborative space, that sparks their imagination by providing facilitates and experiences that encourage the type of problem solving that industry so desperately needs.

The STEAM focused education that will take place in the centre will facilitate Project Based Learning. We are borrowing from, and adapting the best practices from the United States, Australia and Finland to create a curriculum that fully supports innovative and deep learning during the formative years of a child’s life.

So what has happened so far?

  • 3D Printer (the Redhill Robobeast) has been ordered and delivered (see picture)
  • MaKey-MaKey kits (see picture) for Grade 7,8 and 9 STEM activities have arrived – staff recently participated in a training day on the MaKey-MaKeys
  • Acquisition of the first set of LEGO Mindstorm Robotics kits for the FFC
  • Design meetings with Greg Gamble of Tonic Design to design a cutting-edge interior for the FFC

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What’s coming soon?

  • Grade 7 STEM Week on the 18th, 29th and 30th March (first Project-Based Learning experience)
  • Open Day celebrations and demonstration of MaKey-MaKey, 3D Printer and LEGO Mindstorm.

The future of the country’s development lies in the hands of those key players who can solve unique problems. The FFC program hopes to be the spark that lights the innovative fire in the learners at Redhill and eventually the rest of the country.

 

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