The Robe Primary School 6/7s were involved in ‘Schools Tree Day,’ on July 27 as part of their science class.
The 6/7s had a discussion on how their participation in the day could benefit the local community. The class wrote a letter to Robe District Council CEO Roger Sweetman to ask if there were any areas of council land needing trees to be planted so that the children could become involved.
The 6/7 students researched through the Coastal Gardens Planting Guide, provided to the children by the council. The students underwent an excursion around the town with 6/7 teacher Nathalie Boulden.
The students were asked by Ms Boulden to identify local and foreign plant species, the physical features of the plants, their location and comment on their condition/growth, making connections between their observations.
Mr Sweetman quickly put the students in touch with William Hay. Mr Hay had been working on developing the area in front of the Bowling Club, receiving assistance from Cathy Bell at Natural Resources SE.
Ms Boulden explained to the Leader that once the children knew the location they would be working with, they were able to come up with a list of appropriate plants, considering the conditions and restrictions of the location.
“We met with William one morning and he discussed the area with the class, and spent time explaining the dune rehabilitation that had already taken place and some of the issues associated with Front Beach such as erosion and sand drift,” Ms Boulden said. “The children got a lot out of this and enjoyed learning about the natural processes of an area they all spend a lot of time in.”
The 6/7s met with William and Cathy at the plant site on Friday August 3, as they had all the plants organised and ready to go.
“It was a terrible day weather-wise, but we were lucky enough to get a break in the rain,” Ms Boulden said. “The children planted around 300 trees in an hour.”
Ms Boulden added that it was wonderful to see the students working together as a group and getting the job done.
“Everyone put in 100% and they were all very enthusiastic and excited, as it gave them a sense of purpose and responsibility,” she said. “They were all quite proud with how quickly they had planted the trees and I think William was impressed too, as it meant he didn't have to spend his weekend in the rain planting them out.
“The class will continue to keep an eye on the progress of the site and keep in touch with William. I would like to think they feel a sense of responsibility to ensure survival of the plants, so we will check in on the site regularly.”