Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre logo

Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre

Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre

Experience Engage Enable

Telephone02 9816 1298

Emailfieldofmar-e.school@det.nsw.edu.au

Secret life of birds program

Teacher checklist

Location

Field of Mars Reserve, 220 Pittwater Road, East Ryde.

Wallumedegal Country

Google maps - Apple maps

Bus access

Supply bus driver with Field of Mars Reserve bus information

No bus entry into Field of Mars Reserve.

Cost

DoE $22 per student - GST free

Non-gov school cost $32 per student - GST free, minimum charge $600

Risk assessment

Risk management plan 

COVID-19 safety plan

Tracks

View the YouTube track overview videos.

Buffalo Creek Track

Doyle and Warada loop track

Welfare

Participants will be bushwalking during the day in rugged terrain.

This excursion may not be suitable for people who have recently been unwell.

Bring

Backpack, medication, low-waste food, water bottle, sunblock, raincoat, hat, sturdy shoes.

Students wear reusable name tag and sports uniform.

View

Preparing for an excursion

Supporting resources

The Needs of Living Things: Animals. Available for free from Apple Books.

Bin access

All student waste to be taken home by students.

Parent/carer helpers

Optional one or two parents per class, no siblings. Closed shoes essential.

Check COVID-19 restrictions.

Medical or special needs

Notify Field of Mars staff prior to excursion. 

Sick students or adults to stay at home.

Extreme or wet weather

Days predicted to be above 35ºC, high winds, extreme bush fire danger and dust storms may result in the excursion being modified, postponed or cancelled. 

Cancellations

Cancellations with less than three school weeks; notice will incur a $500 administration fee. This does not apply to cancellations due to weather, fire danger or COVID-19 restrictions.


Suggested timetable

 
The suggested timetable is suitable for up to four classses.

Time

Classes A, B

Classes C, D

9.45 - 10.30

Introduction

Recess and toilets

Introduction

Recess and toilets

10.30 - 12.00

Waddle Giggle Gargle story (bird behaviour)

Build a clay bird (external features of a bird) 

Build a small nest & collect wooly worms for chicks 

Bird habitat bushwalk

  • Explore bird habitats 
  • Bird watching
  • Listen to bird calls 
  • Aboriginal dreaming story 

 

Build a giant birds nest 

  • Bird behaviour role play  - nest building, feeding chicks, evading predators etc. 
12.00 - 12.30

 Lunch and toilets

Lunch and toilets 

12.30 - 2.00

Bird habitat bushwalk 

  • Explore bird habitats
  • Bird watching
  • Listen to bird calls 
  • Aboriginal dreaming story 

 

Build a giant birds nest 

  • Bird behaviour role play - nest building, feeding chicks, evading predators etc. 

Waddle Giggle Gargle story (bird behaviour) 

Build a clay bird (external features of a bird) 

Build a small nest & collect wooly worms for chicks

2.00 - 2.15 

Toilets, collect bags, depart 

Toilets, collect bags depart 


Learning activities 

This excursion focuses on birds, their characteristics, needs, behaviours and the environment in which they live. Students will explore the bird habitat at the Field of Mars Reserve and participate in role play activities to investigate bird behaviours. 

Inquiry questions

  • What are the external features of birds?
  • Where do birds live?
  • How do birds behave?
  • How can we care for our native birds? 

Fieldwork

Waddle Giggle Gargle is a well known picture book by Pamela Allen which depicts the distinctive behaviours of magpies as they swoop, nest and feed their young. This story will launch student investigations into bird behaivour and their external features. Students will demonstrate their understanding of the external features of birds by building a small bird out of clay. They will then role play bird behaviours by building a small nest for their bird and collecting wooly worms to feed their chicks. 

Students will participate in a bushwalk at the Field of Mars Reserve to explore the many different bird habitats found in the Sydney bushland. They are certain to see some of the many bird inhabitants of the reserve such as wood ducks, ibis, kookaburras, swamp hens, brush turkeys and wrens.

Students also have the opportunity to plan and build a giant bird’s nest using the abundant natural materials in our nature play space. Using role play, students will be invited to use their nests and this nature play space to demonstrate their understanding of bird behaviour such as finding food, feeding young and evading predators. 


Syllabus outcomes and content

Science K-10 Syllabus (2017) 

Outcomes

A student:

  • explores the characteristics, needs and uses of living things STe-3LW-ST 
  • observes, questions and collects data to communicate ideas STe-1WS-S 

Content

Characteristics and basic needs of living things

A student:

  • recognises that living things have basic needs including air, food and water (ACSSU002)

  • compares the basic needs of some plants and animals

  • participates in guided investigations to identify living things and the external features of plants and animals in the local environment

  • communicates findings and observations of living things in their environment

Science and Technology K-6 Syllabus © NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) for and on behalf of the Crown in right of the State of New South Wales, 2017