The resource is being used in schools from Ahipara in the north, to Pitt Island (on the Chatham Islands) in the south. Its key focus is on maths and social science learning areas.
Activities include children using a protractor to calculate the angle required for each turn tanker driver Tina makes on the farm and at the farm gate. They also use a compass and Google Maps to estimate the tanker’s time and distance to and from the dairy factory.
Other highlights include a series of fun activities, with students working out volume, capacity and weight, then finishing up in round robin teams competing in the ‘Cow Olympics’. Here are a sample of reactions noted in teachers’ blogs on our DairyNZSchools website:
- "[Our Year 5 and 6] children loved this kit, and as teachers, we found the maths concepts involved were really challenging. They provided a great opportunity for new learning.”
- “Most of the children in my class live on dairy farms, so the ‘grass-to-glass’ process was incredibly relevant and of high interest for them. They LOVED the Cow Olympics!”
- “While we used it mainly as a maths focus, it was a fantastic integrated unit with learning across all areas of the curriculum. It also involved so much teamwork and cooperation and incorporated lots of measurement techniques.”
The last comment comes from a teacher at Waikato’s Tamahere Model Country School, an early adopter of the resource. Its pupils were delighted to see Track the Tanker showcased in Rosie’s classroom a few weeks later while visiting National Fieldays at Mystery Creek.
“They became very animated when they saw the kit and were very keen to share what they'd been doing with it in class,” says Karen Sandoy, DairyNZ’s education and community engagement manager. “Judging by the ongoing positive comments being posted each week on our DairyNZ Schools website, Track the Tanker’s popularity can only continue to grow.”
Three new DairyNZ school resource kits have been released this past year to 1250 teachers, reaching 40,000 children. They include Can it Ice Cream, released in 2018, which to date has been our most popular resource.
Another kit (released to 250 teachers in Term 3 of 2019) is Grassroots (stories from well-known New Zealanders who have grown up on farms).
Teachers’ guides and other support resources for each kit are available for download at DairyNZSchools.co.nz
This article was originally published in Inside Dairy September 2019