Today the Year 1/2 and Year 2 classes visited Urrbrae Secondary School and the Nature Education Centre as a part of our current Inquiry unit about Ecosystems and the human impact upon ecosystems.
WOW!!! We had a fantastic day and learnt so much new information from the experts there.
We didn’t know a lot about freshwater ecosystems – now we do.
We started our day at the Nature Education Centre, where Sally introduced us to a ring tailed possum, a bearded dragon lizard, a sleepy lizard, a carpet python and an owl.
Next, we walked over to the wetlands area and walked on a special trail to explore the plants and larger animals that live in this habitat. Each team had a recorder with a checklist, one person with a microscopic view finder, one person with the charts to help identify creatures that we saw and everyone had binoculars for a closer view. We used tallies to count some of the animals – especially the rainbow lorikeets. A part of our tour was to look at the drains that feed the fresh water into the wetland areas and the nets that catch all of the rubbish, leaf litter and many other items that come into the wetlands when it rains. This showed us the impact of humans on ecosystems and gave us some new ideas for how we need to continue to care for our environments.
After lunch, we explored the waters of the wetlands. Each team used nets, water trays and ice cube trays to collect water, mud, plant bits and any tiny creatures that live in the water. Then we used spoons and pipettes to scoop water into the ice cube trays and carried these inside to the digital microscopes. Using these digital microscopes we could see all of the aquatic macro invertebrates. We used more charts to find out which types of aquatic macro invertebrates lived in these waters. We found lots of red worms, water slugs and water boatman.
We can’t wait to get back to school and use our new information to help our inquiry investigations.
Our final activity was a bit of a surprise – we went up into a grassland area and build some stick cubby houses or structures. It was a great fun way to finish the day.
We’d like to say a huge thank you to Sally from the Nature Ed Centre, Ann Louise from Urrbrae SS Wetlands classroom and John, Stacey and Alice – the Craigburn Primary parent helpers. Our helpers made sure our day was a great success.
Some more photos of our excursion – thanks Alice for the extras!
What was your favourite part of the day?