Experiential learning is an integral part of consolidating learning and understanding for geographers across all year levels. It is also a means of applying geographical skills to enable analysis and evaluation of core conceptual relationships. In Term 3, students across most year levels were given the opportunity to observe, examine and assess natural and human interactions that occur at local and regional scales across many venues in South East Queensland.
Year 7 Geographers visited the Wivenhoe and Hinze Dams to learn about how water makes its way to our taps from the source and the processes that ensure consistency in quality and delivery. With the assistance of SEQ Water staff, all students were able to test the quality of water at both sites by examining physical, chemical and other properties of the water. The results were of no surprise.
Year 8 visited a sub-tropical rainforest biome at Mount Glorious as a means of consolidating their knowledge about rainforest environments. Whilst on their adventure through the three levels of the rainforest, they observed a variety of native flora and fauna and how they have adapted in their environment.
Year 10 Geographers examined the natural geomorphic processes which have shaped the coastline at the southern end of the Gold Coast. In doing this they also examined the impact of development and coastal management upon the landscape. They paid close attention to the Tweed sand by-pass and how it has changed the beach contours and wave action between Snapper Rocks and Kirra Beach. An essential practical skill the geographers gained was a beach safety talk by Dan and his crew from Walkin’ on Water. They were equipped with the knowledge of being able to read rip currents and tidal charts, as well as being shown how to manoeuvre through the undertow. From this they were provided with the chance to find that perfect wave and ride it to the shoreline. Fortunately for us, the ocean was a warm 22 degrees, the swell was small, there was only a slight onshore breeze and the sets were excellent for novice surfers.
Year 11 Geographers visited the Northey Street City Farm. Here students gathered information on techniques of permaculture that encourage sustainability when growing crops. This local-scale information is then applied on a global scale when attempting to put forward solutions to food insecurity issues faced by many nations.