Skills Canada Alberta believes that connecting with youth in junior high serves to support at a pivotal point in their education journey. To meet this opportunity, SCA is launching a junior high program (designed for grades 7-9) that brings the unique and energetic spirit SCA is known for to students across Alberta through Skills Exploration Days.
The purpose of Skills Exploration Days is to:
1) Inspire junior high students to identify inherent skills and interests.
2) Connect students' skills and interests to trade and technology careers through interactive, hands-on experiences that promote creativity, empathy, and exploration.
3) Promote trade and technology careers as a valuable and rewarding career choice.
Building on the Maker Day model and Alberta Education's Career and Technology Foundations (CTF) Program of Studies, students will use the design thinking process to find a solution to the challenge in the classroom and will then build a prototype with tangible real life tools and materials at Skills Exploration Days.
Prior to building their prototype, students will rotate through the Learn-A-Skill stations while exploring their interests and passions as they learn about various career possibilities. With assistance from industry experts, students will learn how to use tools, technology, and materials safely. Students will then be able to apply these newly acquired skills and knowledge to the construction of their prototype. Unlike other SCA programs, at Skills Exploration Days, there are no winners or medals, just the freedom to explore, make mistakes and try again!
SCA will be hosting the first Skills Exploration Days on December 7th & 8th, 2016! Junior high schools will bring teams of 4 to the Edmonton EXPO Centre for an authentic and meaningful skilled trade and technology career exploration experience. Registration information is in the Skills Exploration Days Teacher Guide below.
How to Get the Most Out of Skills Exploration Days:
1- Be sure to check out the Skills Exploration Days Teacher Guide. This step by step guide will ensure all your questions are answered to ensure you have a successful Skills Exploration Days experience.
2- Expand your knowledge and learn about classroom implementation in the teacher resource: Taking Making into Classrooms: A Toolkit Fostering Curiosity and Imagination in Alberta Classrooms. This resource provides background information to making as a pedagogical orientation and intentional mindset while making connections and references to the Alberta Education CTF Program of Studies.
A special thank you to Susan Crichton and Deb Carter from the Innovative Learning Center at UBC for their inspirational work in the Maker Movement and for assisting in the concept and content development of Skills Exploration Days.
This year's Skills Exploration Days are presented by Merit Contractors Association. The program has also received support from CLAC.
Skills Exploration Days have been made possible thanks to a collaborative initiative between SCA and Partners of the Construction Careers Promotion Committee (CCPC). Partners of CCPC include Merit Contractors Association, CLAC, Alberta Construction Association, Alberta Roadbuilders & Heavy Construction Association, Building Trades of Alberta, and Construction Labour Relations of Alberta.