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Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre

Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre

Experience Engage Enable

Telephone02 9816 1298

Documentary for a day program

Teacher checklist


Field of Mars Reserve, 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.


2023 DoE $24 per student - GST free

2023 Non-gov school cost $34 per student - GST free, minimum charge $600

Risk assessment

Risk management plan

COVID-19 safety plan


View the YouTube track overview videos.

Buffalo Creek Track

Doyle and Warada loop track


Participants will be bushwalking during the day in rugged terrain.

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


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

Students wear reusable name tag and sports uniform.

View Preparing for an excursion
Supporting resources

Eucalypt forest digital book - available free from Apple Books

Fact sheets

Bin access

All student waste to be taken home by students.

Parent/carer helpers

Optional one parent per class, no siblings. Closed shoes essential.

Check COVID-19 restrictions.

Medical or special needs

Notify Field of Mars staff prior to excursion. 

Students, staff and visitors must not attend if unwell, even with mild symptoms. 

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 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 for up to three classes


Classes A, B, C

9.45 - 10.15 Introduction
10.15 - 10.45 Recess
10.45 - 11.00 Equipment distribution
11.00 - 1.00 Mobile filmmaking
12.30 - 1.00 Lunch
1.00 - 2.00 Mobile filmmaking
2.15 Depart

Learning activities

Students will be introduced to the techniques of mobile documentary film making. They will create an informative and entertaining documentary on iPads showcasing the incredible habitats within the Field of Mars Reserve.


In the classroom, students will be introduced to the process of documentary making. A Field of Mars produced documentary is shown to outline the production steps, narration, camera techniques and editing. 

Mobile filmmaking in the Reserve

During this session each class will operate in a variety of bushland locations. Students will be working in groups of 2 or 3.

At each location students will develop a script through field observations and research using a variety of multimodal digital texts. 

Students will take photos and videos to bring their script to life. They will be explicitly taught a variety of camera techniques including camera angles, camera shots and camera movements to enhance their imagery.

Students will be taught how to use iMovie to begin editing their documentary in the field. They will learn how to sequence, adjusting timing, add titles, add captions, modify sound, record voiceovers and add appropriate background music.

All completed movies will be returned to the school via Google Drive.

Syllabus outcomes and content

NSW English K-10 Syllabus

Stage 3

EN3-1A Respond to and compose texts

  • plan, rehearse and deliver presentations, selecting and sequencing appropriate content and multimodal elements for defined audiences and purposes, making appropriate choices for modality and emphasis (ACELY1700, ACELY1710) 

EN3-2A Respond to and compose texts

  • compose imaginative and informative texts that show evidence of developed ideas

  • compose texts that include sustained and effective use of persuasive devices, eg texts dealing with environmental issues 

  • compose increasingly complex print, visual, multimodal and digital texts, experimenting with language, design, layout and graphics 

EN3-3A Understand and apply knowledge of language forms and features

  • recognise the effect of multimedia elements, eg film techniques, animation, voice-overs, sound effects, framing, close-ups

English K-10 Syllabus © NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) for and on behalf of the Crown in right of the State of New South Wales, 2012