Ms Terrie Dempster


DEMPSTER TerrieLife before Girton

I was born in Melbourne but moved to Tasmania at 17 where I lived in many different areas, included several mining towns where I worked in some very interesting hotels. I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of Tasmania with majors on Sociology and History. I also undertook units in Contemporary Voice at the Conservatorium of Music, performing with ‘The Southern Gospel Choir’. I completed my Graduate Diploma of Education (Secondary) at LaTrobe University, Bendigo; having moved back to Victoria with my 4 children in 2006.

A lesser known fact is that whilst performing with the Southern Gospel Choir, we recorded a CD that was nominated for an ARIA in the world music category.

What I Love about Teaching

I love being able to make good connections with students, It turns out that I genuinely like teenagers.

What do you like best about the subjects you teach?

My passion for History lies in the culture and struggles of individuals and societies.

Sociology is a must, it opens your eyes and helps you understand that everything you think is ‘normal’ is just a social construct, that there really is no such thing as ‘weird’.

My favourite classroom activity

One of my favourite activities is taking my Year 9 Sociology class in to town to undertake ethnographic research. They formulate a research topic, usually on something along the lines of “to what extent do people in Bendigo stereotype youth or gender” and then they develop questions, in an attempt to find an answer to their research topic. Kids get so much out of this, not only are they often surprised by some of the stereotypes that people hold, they are also forced to recognise their own stereotypes.

What difference can good teaching make?

The difference between success and failure, the difference between creating passionate, inquisitive human beings and people that are afraid to question and challenge. Education gives you a voice.

Other Hats

Outside the classroom I am a busy mother of two daughters and two sons who range in age from 27 to 15. We are a very close family and spend lots of time together. I also spend a very large amount of time at running events with my youngest son, both Athletics in the summer and Cross Country in the winter…I love it!

I’m also passionate about South East Asia and travel there as often as possible and for fitness I do as much yoga as I can manage.