JUNE 9 became “Green Day” at Mundaring Christian College as the school celebrated Landcare’s #Action4theLand World Environment Day 2016, and launched their CLAP program.
From growing seeds in the early learning centre and collecting rubbish and baking green cupcakes in middle primary to environmental art and planting of trees at the secondary campus in upper primary, every student – dressed in green to fundraise for Landcare – spent the day appreciating their natural world.
Primary co-ordinator Antoinette Wilson is currently undertaking a Masters in Education with a focus on the role of nature in curriculum writing.
“Worldwide nature play has resulted in some fabulous initiatives,” she said.
“Local examples include the Mundaring Sculpture Park and Woodbridge Park.
“In nature play pedagogy, we refer to ‘your space’, ‘your wild space’ and ‘beyond’, with specific learning taking place in each zone.
“Our college’s beautiful natural bush environment brings that to life perfectly.”
Mrs Wilson said it was not just about play, but education in a whole environment learning area.
“There is no reason it can’t happen in the bush, as well as on paper,” she said.
“Somehow reading or doing maths in the bush doesn’t seem like ‘work’ anymore.”
As a water-wise school, the college has long-running initiatives such as multiple vegetable beds, an extensive recycling bank, and the river ranger and bushranger cadet programs.
“We have introduced CLAP (Care, Learn, Appreciate and Protect) as a simple framework for us all to keep nature in the forefront of our minds,” Mrs Wilson said.
“Each year group will have specific initiatives woven into their curriculum.”
Hills Sustainability Group president Patrick Crichton addressed students on the topic of sustainability at a special assembly.
“We are starting to get more request from schools to talk about sustainability,” he said.
“It is wonderful to see schools playing their part in educating their students to value the environment they will inherit.”