Speak to any successful adult and they will name a teacher who inspired them to become a better version of themselves.
Ms Robin Balcomb, of Mannering Park Public School, is one such teacher. Also the school librarian, Ms Balcomb is a proud participant in the This is the life marketing campaign to promote all things good about the Central Coast. Ms Balcomb’s inclusive environmental learning programs have so engaged her students that the school received Best Small School Environmental Awards overall in the recent 2016 Primary School Environment Awards.
Ms Balcomb believes in an integrated approach so that kids can totally immerse in a topic and relate to all the key learning areas to raise their motivation and eagerness to learn. Ms Balcomb’s passion about the environment is infectious and she has spent her time developing a number of teaching initiatives to inspire children about how to look after it. “Success is in enjoyment for the kids and starting the conversation with their families”, she said Her most loved achievement is developing an award winning ‘indigenous bush tucker garden’ and associated program, which showcases the wonders of native Australian plants. The full list of Ms Balcomb’s initiatives is expansive, with each one aimed at engaging the community through the family unit.
Ms Balcomb said she knows many fantastic teachers on the Central Coast and believes education on the Central Coast rivals the best in Sydney. “Most classrooms are embracing new technologies, and twenty-first century learning spaces are being set up across the Central Coast. “We’re leaving the traditional rows of desks behind, and using modern furnishings to create comfy learning centres and a more futuristic learning environment. “Data is showing that reading rates are improving using this method and this can only benefit students on the Central Coast. “The other thing we have here on the Central Coast is plenty of space for sports and other activities. “I know a lot of very enthusiastic teachers who are very proud of their schools and are putting energy into gardens and artwork around the schools, and they have the space to make this happen. “These are real benefits to education here on the Central Coast,” Ms Balcomb said.
Media release, Jan 11, 2017 Central Coast Council Media