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Hands on Learning innovation accolade 

 Café program selected for global innovation spotlight

04 October 2018
The Hands on Learning Café has been selected by Finnish not-for-profit HundrED for its first global spotlight on Victoria, which will discover, research and share scalable innovations in education.

The selection was announced last night at the HundrED Spotlight event in Southbank, Melbourne, where the 10 kindergarten to Year 12 innovations from Victoria were profiled.

HundrED partnered with Education Changemakers, Australia’s leading education innovation company, to select 10 Victorian education innovations to receive support to share their work across Australia and the world, including exposure on the global platform.

The Hands on Learning Café provides real-world learning opportunities for students who spend one day every week outside class working collaboratively to run a café at three schools in Melbourne’s west.

The program targets students who are disengaged from the mainstream classroom to prevent them dropping out of school by re-engaging them with learning and supporting them to develop general skills as a foundation for future success in education and employment.

Brookside P-9 College Principal Simon Sherlock said the Hands on Learning cafe bolstered self-esteem and a sense of belonging, helping students become more content at school.

“Motivation, focus and confidence increase when students return to class – building the platform for greater engagement in their learning,” Mr Sherlock said.

“The Hands on Learning Café drives innovation across the curriculum through its emphasis on the development of capabilities and competencies such collaboration, organisation, problem solving and communication.

“Entrepreneurial skills, budgeting, marketing and fundraising are also core elements, and students obtain recognised qualifications by completing barista and safe food handling courses.”

The café program uses the proven Hands on Learning methodology first piloted in Frankston in 1999. 

Hands on Learning is a practical education program, supported by child rights organisation Save the Children, and now runs in 80 primary and secondary schools.  It was included in HundrED’s first Global Top 100 Inspiring Innovations in 2017. Hands on Learning Café has been shortlisted for the 2019 global list to be announced on November 7.

Amy, a Year 9 student from Brookside College in Caroline Springs, said when she was in the Hands on Learning Cafe she was happy because everyone was working on the same thing.

“We get trained in the same way, and we are on the same level. It makes me want to come to school,” Amy said.

“Hands on Learning takes the weight off your shoulders and gives us a break from being in class all the time as that can make you feel overwhelmed and stressed.

“When I go back into class after being in Hands on Learning I’m always in a happy positive mood and wanting to actually learn for once.”

For more information contact Lisa Vagg on 0422 600 656

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