Jessie has always loved sport, but netball is her main passion and she has played in Macedon all her life. She likes to do anything active and recently took up kayaking.
She says she has had huge support from the teaching staff at Braemar College.
Jessie, an Old Collegian, graduated in 2008. She initially studied Exercise Science, but a couple of years into the course, she realised it wasn’t where she wanted her career to go. When she travelled to Cambodia in her third year of university, spending just over a month there, she said it was an incredible experience. When she saw how the children there had to fight for their education, it made her realise, “how lucky we are to have schooling so accessible in Australia.”
Jessie had always considered teaching as a possible career (always loved working with people, particularly young people and had grown up with both parents and five other family members being teachers) however whilst in Cambodia that idea was very much confirmed for Jessie, and set her on the path to studying teaching at the University of Melbourne.
“Lots of people don’t pair literacy with PE,” she says, “but it’s an essential component.”
Jessie sought to achieve 2 main goals:
- To improve literacy skills of students in general (a cross-curricular, fundamental skill for the 21st century learner)
- To improve subject specific (PE/Human Movement) literacy (for example, data interpretation, comprehension of content and ability to articulate answers to questions using the modes, methods and literacy of the discipline.)
She says, ” The Year 10 Human Movement elective was a great way to learn about the literacy of Science, specifically the area of Physical Education and Human Movement. Students learn a style of writing that’s quite different to what they have been taught in the English classroom. Writing lab reports, interpreting data and understanding and utilising subject specific terminology requires a very specific set of skills…….learning about muscles and bones and movement is a new and often challenging type of literacy for students.”
Jessie compared literacy levels students were at when they first started the project with the final outcomes, and said there were significant improvements in skills by the end of the project.
She says it was a real partnership and helped her find out what worked for students. Jessie is now incorporating her findings in her teaching.
She says, “The knowledge gained from my VIT project has enabled me to tailor my teaching to individual needs.”
When she’s not teaching, Jessie loves adventure travel. She also enjoys cooking and loves cookbooks.