The Foundry Term 1 Reflections & Findings

  • 2022
Dean Lea, Foundry Specialist Teacher

Reflecting at the end of term one we celebrate successful hands-on projects with our THS students. We also thank our PTA for the provision of a double sink. The closeness of water has inspired water focused projects, and a cleaner environment. 

Through the term we have welcomed all grades from junior grade one [JG1] to grade twelve into the Foundry to work through a week ‘intensive’. With the exception of JG1, classes spent 9 - 12 hours a week in the Foundry actively working through a wealth of projects. All projects are collaboratively developed between subject and Foundry teachers. Tables below provide a brief overview of some of the projects we celebrate.

Grade 1 crafting compass roses and extending their navigational awareness. The students demonstrated a development of fine motor skill as they very carefully cut and placed decorational geometric shapes to enhance eight section  direction details.

High school students spent November’s STEAM week constructing an acrylic operational Gel Electrophoresis Chamber that visually presented DNA data. Students also constructed laser engraved posters and videos  presenting scientific detail.

We have found that the students at the start of the school year were reluctant to spend their time in the Foundry planning their projects. They simply wanted to launch into building ‘stuff”. It has been revealing to witness students respond to “how big will your project idea be?” with wide eyes, and a look of being unsure.

Grade 6 resiliently grappled with creating a sealed water system  and providing structural stability in order to build a multi-chamber watermill structure aimed towards generating power. The project required major application of detailed problem solving and a resilient mindset.

Grade 5 upcycled gathered plastic bottles to design and build a three level Eco-Column system. They also designed and built a supporting structure for their columns.

Wanting to enhance the intentionality of learner behaviour in the Foundry, we are increasingly  focused on the designing and planning stages of projects, frequently having students begin their project work on paper, or similar. We speak consistently to the students regarding Engineering and Design cycles and how they are actively and repeatedly applying stages of both engineering and design cycles in their project development. 

Pleasingly we have noticed that the students are becoming more aware of the benefit of planning their build. Our aim remains to have students develop organisation skill, intentionality and creative quality through detailed hands-on experiences.

Grade 2 spent 12 hours in the Foundry measuring, sawing, sanding, nailing, glueing and decorating to successfully build a personal food chain to take home. Alongside an individual food chain, the group collaboratively constructed a class food web that will get displayed on their floor.

Grade 3 experienced a ZERO-TECHNOLOGY moment through crafting early man tools with the use of nothing. Shaping stones with stones and cutting vine with stones became a reality as each student crafted an Axe and Spear. Returning to Tech’ they then crafted a SPORK utensil.

In addition to the creation of successfully crafted projects and experiences, we have been busy developing the Foundry’s web site aiming to share images and experiences encountered within our creative space. We are thrilled to include growing project write ups and image galleries created this year.

G4 designed, built and decorated roman torches to support the celebration of PE activities and solidify understandings of ancient civilisations. To bring the torches to life students installed and wired powerful fan units and LED lighting systems to add life to their constructions.

THS students are supported by The Children’s Institute [TCI]  The Foundry offered training to all of the TCI adults. Tool and machine orientation videos plus a two hour Wednesday on-site practical experience saw an assortment of TCI projects develop. We have seen the additional knowledge directly benefit the supported students.


In addition to the ‘Intensive’ projects we have been generating with the students, we have established a Foundry Renovation SEA course focusing on redesigning the entrance area of the Foundry. Students ideated, designed and proposed renovation plans to senior leadership. Sincerely excited and motivated by administrative approval, the students continue to implement their plans. We promise to present the renovation process and outcomes once completed. 

We are excited and ready to work :) 

Drop in and say hi.







Explore More

Begin your journey