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Harry Sanders

Maths and technologies teacher

Maths and technologies teacher - Harry Sanders

Harry Sanders loves teaching maths to students in the technologies learning area

Before he’d finished Year 12, Harry was on a career path to the building industry, completing a Certificate II in Construction Pathways and then starting a carpentry apprenticeship. 

With his trade experience, Harry then took what he’d learnt in the construction industry and transitioned to teaching high school maths and technologies, with a keen interest in vocational pathways.

“Numeracy and mathematics is in everything we do. From measuring with different equipment, to adding or subtracting to know if a material is big enough; mathematics is everywhere, and it is unavoidable,” Harry says.

“We work out ratios when mixing gas for welding, use equations to work out RPMs of machines, angles and geometry for milling machines. Students always seem a bit surprised when they can do the maths, but it’s approachable because it’s in a real-life context.”

Harry says maths is more enjoyable when it feels relevant, as with any learning. 

For students struggling with maths and considering dropping it, Harry says: “I try to remind my students of the value of being both a good problem-solver and someone who is up for a challenge.”

“Mathematics in high school teaches you more than just how to answer mathematics problems. It teaches students how to be effective problem-solvers, and equips them with a skill set to help them tackle any tricky situations,” Harry says.

“Of course, the way skills are applied to the problem is totally different, you’re not going to use algebra if your car is breaking down. However, you will utilise your mental skill set to determine how to approach the problem and what a good solution would look like,” he adds.

“There’s more to learn in mathematics than just mathematics!”

Harry’s study and career path to becoming a maths and technologies teacher

  • Certificate II in Construction Pathways, TAFE SA
  • Certificate III in Carpentry, TAFE SA
  • Lead carpenter, Hoffmann Building Services
  • Bachelor of Secondary Education (Design and Technology for Education), University of South Australia
  • Teacher, Trinity College South Australia

This profile was created in partnership with the National Careers Institute and originally appears in Careers with STEM: Maths & Data 2024.

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