Close you eyes a bit and imagine the plants these students are holding, and the area behind them in six months time – the plants have all grown, water is running along the creek bed and hopefully a frog or two are inhabiting the pond.
It’s got all the makings of a lovely, nurturing, inviting and educational setting, and for the students of Angle Vale Primary School, it will be their very own explore and learn habitat garden.
The three R’s of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle are always being considered at AVPS, where students from Reception to Year 7 recently spent a few days planting out this barren and wasted area of their grounds.
Earthworks to create a dry creek bed and the “bones” of the garden were constructed earlier in the year, with funding from the NRM’s Grow a Great School Program, and Coles’ Junior Landcare project as well as a one-off $1000 grant from the NRM board.
AVPS Reception teacher and garden project co-ordinator, Kate Marschall, said the garden had already got kids talking and out and about “in” nature, with just under 1000 native plants and grasses being planted.
Featuring a native grassland area, butterfly habitat, gecko habitat and ephemeral wetland (in case you’re wondering, that means not wet all the time!), as well as a bridge, frog pond, and rock area, Ms Marschall said she was excited by the possibilities for learning and exploring nature.
“We want to use this area as an outdoor classroom,” she explained. “It’s a place where kids can come and play and explore and it’s a place where they can be in touch with nature.”
The habitat garden will also be linked with the school’s vegetable garden, which is focused on wiping out waste.