This week, ACT public school students will undertake an audit of trees at their school as part of a range of activities to celebrate Planet Ark’s National Schools Tree Day on Friday 31 July.
Students will step into their school backyard to find out how many trees they have and record observations such as seasonal differences between tree species, their physical characteristics and any wildlife that inhabit the trees.
This type of citizen science can play a key role in fostering appreciation for trees and in developing an interest in caring for new trees that are planted on site.
ACT public school students learn about sustainability across several curriculum areas in ways that help them to think critically, solve problems and make decisions to advocate for sustainable futures.
They explore current issues and develop action plans and possible solutions to local, national and global issues, helping them to develop the knowledge, values and world views to become more sustainable global citizens.
Charles Weston School is an example of this, where students are actively engaged with their environment and are encouraged to be sustainable citizens in their everyday lives. The school takes its name from Canberra’s earliest horticulturist who was responsible for the species selection, location and planting of trees in a young Canberra.
The school’s motto is GROW – ‘Growth Mindset, Respect, Organisation, Wellbeing’, with ‘respecting the environment’ a part of this. Charles Weston School has an established School Parliament, complete with a Minister for the Environment.
Since 2017 nearly 450 carefully selected trees have been planted across public schools as part of the ACT Government’s tree planting program.
Various species of trees are chosen for their ability to shade, tolerate dry conditions and pests, and to withstand extreme conditions. Consideration is given to the location of trees so that where practical they can shade school buildings to reduce building heat loads during summer.
The ACT Government’s Tree Planting Program is part of our commitment to providing sustainable, natural outdoor learning spaces for students, that foster connections with the natural environment.
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Section: Yvette Berry, MLA | Media Releases
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