The Australian Environment

Program NameDescription Year GroupDuration
Biodiversity To develop understandings of habitat health and biodiversity, students visit 2 habitats and collect real data. Then using sweep nets, students will catch insects and use a microscope to take a closer look at them. 3 - 6 2 Hours
Bushwalking Students are given the opportunity to engage, explore, connect and interact with Birrigai’s abundance of flora, fauna and geology. Learn the history of the Ngunnawal people, visit granite tors and sheltered caves. Track grades range from easy or moderate through to challenging. Extended walks in neighbouring Tidbinbilla and Namadgi NP are further program options. P - 12 15 min - 8 hours
Campfires In small groups children learn about fire safety, build their own campfire and learn how to cook delicious damper twists. Depending on desired learning outcomes, emphasis can be placed on role of fire in the lives of Traditional Inhabitants, Early Settlers or in maintaining biodiversity. 3 - 12 2 - 3 Hours
Carbon Cycle Students participate in a role play “carbon cycle game” and learn how the balance of carbon can be upset by excess emissions. Students then select a tree and calculate (a) how much carbon dioxide it stores and (b) the equivalent “School to Birrigai” car trips this amount of carbon will provide. Extending the concept of carbon stores, students mimic the action of weathering and erosion on the ingredients of soil. Maximum of 30 students per session. 3 - 6 1.5 Hours
Environment Trail Students play simulation games to learn about the importance of the sun and the needs of life. The Cat and Bilby game explains the nature of threats to our native animals and positive actions students can implement. 1 - 2 4 Hours
Grassland Detectives Using two sampling techniques discover who lives in Birrigai’s grassy woodland habitat and explore their interconnectedness. Use microscopes to have a closer look at the special features of these plants and insects. 2 - 6 3 Hours
Hey, Frog! The Northern Corroboree Frog is an endangered frog found only in our region.  Play a dynamic game to find out what threatens the frogs’ survival, how the threats can be combatted and what can be done to help. Depending on buses, visit Tidbinbilla, listen for frogs at the Sanctuary and learn about the successful breeding program that has been established there. Maximum of 30 students per session. 2 - 3 1.5 Hours
Sustainability Challenge Can we live using practices that leave less of an impact on earth and don’t compromise the ability of future generations to meet their needs? By completing a number of challenges, students explore these questions. Through hands-on activities, they establish a sustainable community. They build a home and garden, pump water from a shared dam and explain their sustainable choices to Captain Sustainability. Maximum of 60 students per session. 3 - 6 3 Hours
Web of Life The Web of Life simulation game is one of the most popular environmental activities at Birrigai. Students take on different animal roles to explore the interrelationships between animals and Australian ecosystems and examine the effect of disturbances as they resonate through the whole food chain. 3 - 8 Up to 3 Hours
Wetland Connections Find out who eats who in a food chain by exploring the plants and animals at Birrigai’s wetland.  Join in an animal identification walk and using binoculars discover some of our amazing wetland creatures. Use nets to catch macro invertebrates and our microscopes to identify and classify them according to their features. Learn ways to care for our sensitive wetland ecosystems. 3 - 4 3 Hours
Wetland Friends Investigate habitats with a particular emphasis on identifying the variety of external features found in a vast variety of wetland plants and animals. Discover the wetlands on a binocular walk and dip a net in the water to catch macro invertebrates. Use microscopes to discover what special features the water bugs have that help them live in the wetlands. Find out how they breathe, move and eat. Model a clay animal with special features to live in the wetlands. K - 2 3 Hours
Wetland Wonders Have fun exploring wetland environments and the animals that live there. Build a model wetland with an ecology kit and develop techniques for catching and identifying macro invertebrates in a safe environment. Use microscopes to see water bugs up close. Join in a picnic with the some of the wetland animals and find out what they like to eat. P 3 Hours
Wetland Detectives Investigate the structural features and adaptations that help plants and animals survive in Birrigai’s wetlands Collect evidence to assess the health of the water system. A guided walk through the wetlands, water testing and assessment of the macro-invertebrates will assist you to judge the systems health. Use the microscopes to identify species. Examine the ecological role of wetlands and the need to conserve theses ecosystems. 5 - 6 3 Hours