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Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre

Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre

Experience Engage Enable

Telephone02 9816 1298

Environmental change and management program

Teacher checklist


Blackman Park, Lloyd Rees Drive, Lane Cove West

Google maps - Apple maps

Bus access

Supply bus driver with Blackman Park bus information


DoE $25 per student - GST free

Non-gov school cost $35 per student - GST free, minimum charge $600

Risk assessment Risk management plan 

COVID-19 safety plan

View the YouTube track overview video.

Blackman Park and surrounds


Participants will be bushwalking during the day in rugged terrain.

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


Clipboard, worksheets, medications, low-waste food, plenty of water, sunblock, hat, raincoat and mask in a small backpack. Sports uniform recommended.

There are no shops near the study site.


Preparing for an excursion.

Bin access

All student waste to be taken home by students.

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

The suggested timetable is suitable for up to four classses. Classes rotate across four study sites.


Class 1

Class 2

Class 3

Class 4

9.45 - 10.00 Introduction and fieldwork preparation
10.00 - 10.45 Study site 1 Study site 4 Study site 3 Study site 2
10.45 - 11.00 Recess
11.00 - 11.45 Study site 2 Study site 1 Study site 4 Study site 3
11.45 - 12.30 Study site 3 Study site 2 Study site 1 Study site 4
12.30 - 1.00 Lunch
1.00 - 1.45 Study site 4 Study site 3 Study site 2 Study site 1
1.45 - 2.15 Conclusion and departure

Learning activities

Mangrove communities thrive along the middle section of the Lane Cove River estuary. However, recently a small section of mangroves found below Blackman Park died. Students will investigate the wetland and forest environments of the Lane Cove River and predict the causes of the environmental change. 

This fieldwork will support a comparative study with at least ONE other country.

Inquiry question

  • How can the environment at Blackman Park be effectively managed for healthy mangrove communities?


Students will explore the recreational space, the ridgetop woodland and the mangrove forest on the shores of the river. Students will analyse aerial photography to support their field observations of current land uses, to develop background knowledge of the study area. Field sketches and historical and current maps will enable students to deepen their understanding of environmental change by allowing them to describe the biophysical processes that have transformed the river and surrounding environments of Blackman Park.

Mangrove forests edge the shoreline of the Lane Cove River estuary. Students will use geographic tools to investigate the biological requirements of mangrove communities and compare areas of living mangrove forest and altered mangrove forest. Changes in the environment and the consequences of these changes will be explored and students will begin to make connections as to the cause of the die-back experienced in the mangrove forest.

Blackman Park’s role as a multi-purpose recreational space and its location in the lower north shore places considerable pressure on the competing needs of recreational space and natural values. Current management of the site, its effectiveness and the differing views of management will be assessed.

Syllabus outcomes and content

NSW Geography K-10 Syllabus (2015)


  • explains processes and influences that form and transform places and environments GE5‑2 
  • analyses the effect of interactions and connections between people, places and environments GE5‑3 
  • assesses management strategies for places and environments for their sustainability GE5‑5 
  • acquires and processes geographical information by selecting and using appropriate and relevant geographical tools for inquiry GE5‑7 



Environmental change


  • investigate human-induced environmental changes across a range of scales 


Environmental management


  • investigate environmental management, including different worldviews and the management approaches of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples


Investigative study

This fieldwork investigation can be used for the investigative study.

Select ONE type of environment in Australia as the context for a comparative study with at least ONE other country.


  • investigate the biophysical processes essential to the functioning of the selected environment
  • investigate the causes, extent and consequences of the environmental change  (ACHGK073)
  • investigate the management of the environmental change (ACHGK074, ACHGK075)
Geography K-10 Syllabus © NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) for and on behalf of the Crown in right of the State of New South Wales, 2015