Today Waitāwheta Class spent the day at Aongatete Forest park, one of the oldest Puriri forests in the country. Aongatete Forest Project have a very successful baiting and trapping program which means that there is an abundance of bird life and also native NZ geckos.
For our class, Monday's is Forest School Day where we work on safe risk taking, understanding more about ourselves, our abilities and those of our classmates. We learnt to work towards goals and help those around us as they do so too.
Spending time in an unfamiliar forest gives us an opportunity to test what we know and how we feel.
At times our vision can become narrow, we only see where we are going. Today we spent sometime exploring 3 distinct layers of the forest, the forest floor, the sub-canopy (eye level-ish) and the towering canopy layer. We spent some time searching for things at all levels, natural objects, such as fungi, leaves and berries, and manmade objects such as track markers and information signs. Doing this before heading off on a longer walk to the famed swimming hole gave us confidence in our surroundings.
Spending time at the swimming hole gave us the opportunity to explore and marvel in the wonder of nature, a great reward for this terms work and learning in Forest School.
Thank you to our fantastic parents who drove and spent the day with us, carrying toilet paper just in case! Without you these trips would not be possible we really appreciate it.
Tony and Sue at Bullswool Farm Park invited Waikino School to help them return and area of pasture to native bush. This work is part of a bigger plan to build habitats for our native birds. The first planting session was 3 years ago now in winter of 2015 when students who are now our Year 6's planted Kauri, Manuka and Puriri beautiful area of the wilderness walk.
Today Waitāwheta class returned to our area and with the help of 4 of our parents, planted more Kauri and Pūriri. For our class who have been learning about regeneration of native bush in our forest school sessions it was a great opportunity to see what can be achieved.