Primary Schools Look at Creek Health

Drake and Jennings primary schools visit Tenterfield and use water bugs to determine the creeks health.

Building our Future -

LLCI031-065

Primary Schools Look at Creek Health

Drake and Jennings primary schools visit Tenterfield and use water bugs to determine the creeks health.

The issue

Drake and Jennings Primary school students where undertaking studies on riparian ecosystems and wanted to do a practical activity to gain a better understanding of what makes a healthy waterway. The teachers approached Granite Borders Landcare for assistance of technical support and equipment. Landcare offered to run a Water Bug Detective activity where the students could sample the water to reveal information about the abundance and diversity of macroinvertebrates and their tolerance to pollution to indicate the health of the waterway.

The solution

On the 3rd March 2017 forty four pupils and their teachers came to the Tenterfield creek to learn how water bugs can be used to indicate the health of a water way. The activity engaged the school children in understanding what makes a healthy and resilient ecosystem as well as encouraging them to undertake monitoring of their own waterways. Granite Borders Landcare Committee was then also able to donate all the equipment the students will need to undertake studies of their own creeks health using water bugs as a simple indicator.

The impact

The event provided a fun learning experience for the students as well as increased their capacity and knowledge to engage with the environment. The teachers and students were also introduced to Waterwatch activities and information which was shown to integrate really well with their schools curriculum. All the children were enthused by the day and excited for further outdoor activities where they can learn about the environment. The activity also strengthened the partnership between GBLC and the schools.

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Key facts

  • 44 students from two primary schools learnt to use the abundance and diversity of freshwater macroinvertebrates to indicate the health of a waterway.
  • Increased awareness and understanding of what constitutes a healthy riparian ecosystem.
  • Integrated Landcare activities with school curriculum.

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