It's National Science Week and the shire's schools and pre-schools are getting hands-on to explore the many facets of science through fun and challenging experiments, technology and robotics, and building.
The NVI sat down with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) teachers Olivia Chapman, Leanne Herden and Suzanne Feodoroff to find out why science is becoming increasingly important and how it is affecting learning.
There's a common theme between the women: all three are driven by a personal interest in STEM, and believe they are preparing youths for jobs that don't even exist yet.
St Xavier's Primary School assistant principal and head of science and technology, Ms Herden said she could "see the importance" of STEM and said the school had based learning around the science and technology syllabus.
"We're trying to give kids experience with lots of different things [because] who knows what career path they'll choose down the track," she said.
"It's hands-on, and getting involved has probably sparked interest of kids who might not generally have gone for that sort of thing.
"You test your theory and see how it goes. [You say] 'OK, it didn't work - let's change it up and give it another go'. I think that's the sort of thing kids find engaging. It's not something that's black and white."
It's like you see the kids using their brains like they never used it before ... You can watch them grow.Suzanne Feodoroff, St Mary's College
She said it was evident that many students enjoyed a dynamic style of learning. The school had run lunchtime clubs with students "queuing up at the door to have a go".
"It's the sort of thing they enjoy," she said.
"They watch YouTube and that will pique their interest [in] that hands-on free play, discover-for-yourself, which I think is a whole new part of the curriculum ... and that all prepares kids for different career paths.
"The idea of being able to problem-solve and think on your feet and take skills from one area and apply them to another area, I think, will help them in the future.
"We're preparing kids, and keeping abreast of everything is probably going to be challenging for schools in the future."
Over at Carinya Christian School, Mrs Chapman heads up STEM and her passion becomes quickly obvious as her eyes light up. It is this passion that drives her to learn more, and pass on her knowledge and understanding to junior and senior students.
She started at Carinya only this year but, before the first term started, had already secured a grant from the Department of Industry and Science to set up a "maker space" so students could apply their creativity to personal interest projects during class time and breaks.
The space is filled with 3D printers, Lego robotics (EV3), robotics components and computers for CAD design, and it is popular with students.
"I think it's an exciting time to be here," Mrs Chapman said.
"My goal for [Science Week] was just to wonder at God's creation and the scope of it, and prompt creative, imaginative thinking in science and technology.
"It's an opportunity for them to think about things they already know but in different ways."
Principal Chad Kentwell said the school had "increased focus" on STEM across the classroom and offered STEM-related subjects such as robotics and computer coding as "interest electives" for years 4-7.
St Mary's College iSTEM teacher Ms Feodoroff focused on robotics and coding this week in workshops she ran for year 8 to gauge interest for year 9 electives.
The workshops were voluntary and more than 30 students had put up their hands to take part, including 17 girls, which Ms Feodoroff said was "substantial". Some of the resources were funded by the Australian Science Teachers Association.
Ms Feodoroff said there were differing levels of skills and interest among the students, but she had noticed more knowledgeable students helping their peers.
Her main observation was that it helped students to apply lateral thinking to practical challenges, and sparked collaboration, teamwork, attention to detail and problem-solving.
"You get to see how the kids think and learn in a different way ... I've been a science teacher for 14, 15 years and it's a whole different dynamic.
"The thing I really notice about it is you're watching the kids and you're watching the learning. Problem-solving - they've got to work it out for themselves a lot.
"It's like you see the kids using their brains like they never used it before ... You can watch them grow."
STEM is a key part of the school science curriculum now and is being pushed by the Australian government to equip future generations for the workforce, improve productivity and inform decision-making.
The government introduced the $1.1 billion National Innovation and Science Agenda in 2015, allocating more than $64 million to fund early learning and school STEM initiatives under the Inspiring all Australians in Digital Literacy and STEM program.
On the Department of Education's website, the government states a commitment to "improving the STEM skills of young Australians to ensure that they have the skills they need to live and work in a globalised world".