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Module 1 Our Local Bushland Now and Then

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					NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                                            Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009



Module 1: Our Local Bushland Now and Then
Essential Learnings in SOSE by the end of Year 75

Place and space: Environments are defined by physical characteristics and processes,
and are connected to human activities and decisions about resource management.
o Australian environments are defined by patterns of natural processes, by human
   activities and by the relationships between them, including climate and natural resource
   distribution, resource use, and settlement patterns
o Sustainability requires a balance between using, conserving and protecting
   environments, and involves decisions about how resources are used and managed
o Distribution maps, climate zone maps and weather maps have specific features to
   convey information, including latitude, longitude, eight compass points, scale and
   distance, a legend and shading and/or symbols.

Approach

The main approach used in this module to foster the Essential Knowledge and
Understanding and Ways of Working are inquiry and experiential learning. Through the
module, students are first tuned into the subject “Our Local Bushland Now and Then” by
being asked where they are on the map and if they know where the nearest natural
bushland to their school is. They then find out the answers by collecting information in the
field themselves, and sorting out, comparing and analysing other information available
from printed and online resources. Students then engage themselves into further
investigations and reflection of how and why our landscapes, and in particular nearby
vegetation, has changed through time.


Unit 1.1: Discover our surrounds

Purpose and scope

The first step to learning about our local native plants is to find out where they are. To
facilitate field observations and analyses, students are asked to locate the nearest piece of
natural vegetation to their schools. Other natural and human-made features are also noted.

Activities are designed to introduce and further students’ knowledge and skills in map
reading and construction, using conventional atlas and interactive online systems.

The concept of ground-truthing is introduced and where feasible, students also learn to
use simple GPS – Global Positioning System.

Through the activities, focusing on their nearest surrounds, students select and apply
information and communication technologies (ICTs) to inquire, analyze and communicate
environmental and social patterns.



5
 QLD Studies Authority, 2008. Knowledge and Understanding for Study of Society and Environment. QLD Curriculum,
Assessment and Reporting Framework. www.qsa.qld.edu.au/downloads/assessment/qcar_el_sose_kau.pdf (accessed
Dec 08)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                                               Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009




Assessment Criteria for Core Learning Outcomes in SOSE6

PS 3.4. Students use and make maps to identify coastal and land features, countries and
continents, and climate zones. Students:
   o know lines of latitude
   o use lines of latitude to identify climatic zones
   o locate and describe places using intercardinal points (NW, NE, SW, SE)
   o use an atlas to locate places in Queensland, Australia, the world
   o accurately mark places on a map
   o identify coastal and land features
   o interpret map symbols


Lesson 1.1.1: What’s on the map?

Key Activities / Resources (at least 1 hour)

Preparation and materials:
   o A large world atlas with climatic maps (or online versions; e.g. the world map of
      Koppen-Geiger climate classification7).
   o One or a series of climatic maps focusing on Australia; e.g. from the Bureau of
      Meteorology8.
   o Four to six copies of a local UBD street directory (showing school and surrounds)
   o And/or four to six computer stations with broadband internet connections

Pull out a world atlas:
   o Review students’ knowledge of latitudes and longitudes.
   o Can they define the world climatic zones (tropical, sub-tropical, temperate, arctic)
       with latitudes?
   o Ask students to locate Australia, then Queensland, referring to latitudes and
       longitudes.
   o Ask students what climatic zone they think the Sunshine Coast falls within?
       According to Koppen-Geiger’s classification, coastal SE QLD has a “humid
       subtropical” climate (Cfa)9 while the Australian Bureau of Meteorology classifies this
       area in the “warm humid” zone10.
   o Then show them an Australian climate map, printed or online11.

Divide the students into groups of 4 to 6, each with a street directory:
   o Ask students to locate their school in the directory (the fastest group gets an
       environmentally friendly prize).


6
  QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s mine: Discovering Australia. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society
and Environment. www.qsa.qld.edu.au/downloads/syllabus/kla_sose_sbm_305.pdf (accessed Dec 08)
7
  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:World_Koppen_Map.png (accessed Jan 09)
8
   Bureau of Meteorology. Australian climatic zones. www.bom.gov.au/climate/environ/travel/map.shtml (accessed Jan
09)
9
  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:World_Koppen_Map.png (accessed Jan 09)
10
   www.bom.gov.au/climate/environ/travel/mappink.shtml (accessed Jan 09)
11
   Earth Science Australia. General Australian Climate. http://earthsci.org/processes/weather/austwea/autwea.htm
(accessed Dec 08)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                                      Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

       o Ask each group to list any natural features (e.g. creek, lake, beach, remnant
         vegetation, forest reserve…) and human-made features (e.g. roads, bridges,
         housing, shops, golf course…) they can see around the school and in the vicinity.
       o Ask students where they think the nearest natural vegetation may be.
       o Make photocopies of the relevant pages from the directory, a copy between two
         students.

The same group exercise may be replaced or repeated using Google map12 online. This is
a free program readily accessible through web browsers with broadband connections. If
there are enough computer stations, this exercise may be done individually.
    o Start with the map of Australia on Google map.
    o Zoom in gradually north of Brisbane.
    o Try zooming in further slowly and navigate around familiar locations until the school
       is located.
    o Alternatively, use the “search” function to locate the school. Check the actual
       address of the school to confirm the marked location on the map.
    o Once the school is located, list any natural (e.g. creek, lake, beach, remnant
       vegetation, forest reserve…) and human-made features (roads, bridges, housing,
       golf course…) that can be seen around the school and in the vicinity, zooming in
       and out to get different levels of detail and areas of coverage.
    o Try the “terrain” view to see any additional information.
    o Ask students where they think the nearest natural vegetation is.
    o Click “satellite” to get aerial photographic view of the area.
    o Now, students should be able to see where the vegetation is, or at least when the
       aerial image was taken. See sample maps below.
    o Print both the map and “satellite” views on A3 sheets, a copy between two students.




12
     Google Maps Australia. http://maps.google.com.au/ (accessed Dec 08)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                              Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

Figure 1.1.1: Sample maps from http://maps.google.com.au/

1. Terrain view (Pin A indicates location of Noosaville State School, note Cranks Creek
nearby draining northeast into Doonella Lake)




2. Map view (with increased magnification; note green areas indicating vegetation)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                                               Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

3. Satellite view (shows aerial image of the area; note individual school buildings and ovals,
neighbouring school, riparian vegetation along Cranks Creek and remnant vegetation
fragmented by road, school and housing development)




Caveat: There is no information on when the aerial image was taken, so what is shown
online may not be current.


Related Activities / Resources

Activity 3 – Mapping our world, in QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s mine:
Discovering Australia. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society and Environment, Level
3. p.9. Also Resource Sheets 1–2 on p. 19–20.

QLD Spatial Information Council Education Working Group may be able to provide support
in facilitating spatial data and promotes the use of such information in QLD schools13.

Education QLD has an Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Learning
Innovation Centre that supports schools in using spatial technologies to enhance
learning14.

Local Council15 and NICA have GIS systems with information on particular natural,
landuse and infrastructural features (e.g. vegetation cover, land categories, stormwater
drains).

13
   QSIC Education Working Group, 2008.
www.qsic.qld.gov.au/qsic/QSIC.nsf/CPByUNID/431DF69C4539B7284A257096001AF94E (accessed Dec 08)
14
   Education QLD, 2008. http://education.qld.gov.au/smartclassrooms/pdf/edviews_october07.pdf (accessed Dec 08)
15
   www.noosa.qld.gov.au/PlanningDevelopment/PDMaps/PDMaps.shtml (accessed Jan 09)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                                        Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

Lesson 1.1.2: Ground-truthing – Take a close look on the ground

In spatial information technology, Ground Truth “…is where a person on the ground (or
sometimes in an airplane) makes a measurement of the same thing the satellite is trying to
measure, at the same time the satellite is measuring it. The two answers are then
compared to help evaluate how well the satellite instrument is performing.” National
Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)16.

The term in its simplest meaning refers to "what is actually on the ground that needs to be
correlated with the corresponding features in the scene (usually as depicted in a photo or
image)"17.

This lesson gives students the opportunity to use available maps on the ground, and with
an open mind, check carefully for accuracy and possible out-of-date information. This
process is in line with the inquiry approach to teaching and learning. As students describe
and compare what they see in the maps and experience on the ground, their awareness
and evaluation ability become enhanced. These skills are especially important for filtering
the vast amount of information that is now so readily available through the internet.

Key Activities / Resources (allow at least 3 hours)

Preparation and materials:
   o This activity builds on the process, knowledge and findings from Lesson 1.1.1.
   o Organize prior consent from parents for out of school excursion.
   o Take all relevant field safety precautions, procedures and first aid kit.
   o Materials include the photocopied or printed maps from Lesson 1.1.1 and Resource
      sheet 1.1 (a copy between two students), hard-back folders and pencils or marker
      pens, digital cameras and a GPS – Global Positioning System (if available).
   o Plan a walking tour around the school and in the vicinity, making sure to include the
      key natural and human-made features identified in Lesson 1.1.1.
   o A Herbarium Plus folder provided by NICA (optional).

Field trip:
   o Encourage the students in pairs to follow the maps during the tour.
   o Make stops and take photos of any distinct natural (e.g. creek, lake, beach, forest
        reserve…) and human-made features (e.g. roads, bridges, housing, shops, golf
        course…).
   o Each pair of students marks the noted features on the map (if they are not already
        there) while checking for accuracy of other pre-marked features. Fill in the
        Resource sheet 1.1.2.
   o When come across a piece of substantial natural vegetation, mark on the map (as
        above) and take a series of GPS readings (if available) and photos along its
        boundary. Note any human-made structures present or disturbance that may be
        affecting the vegetation.

Back in class:
   o Download and organize the photographs taken during the field trip.
   o Get students to discuss about their school surrounds, referring to their field trip
      observations, with the following suggested questions:

16
     http://asd-www.larc.nasa.gov/SCOOL/groundtruth.html (accessed Jan 09)
17
     http://rst.gsfc.nasa.gov/Sect13/Sect13_1.html (accessed Jan 09)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                                               Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

     o How accurate and informative are the maps?
     o Did the students discover any “new” features that are not on the maps or features
       on the maps that are not on the ground? What and where are they?
     o What are the reasons for such discrepancies?
     o Emphasize the importance of ground-truthing.
     o So where is the nearest natural vegetation to the school?
     o Ask students what kind of information they’d like to find out about this piece of
       vegetation? Suggested questions:
            How big is the area? They may have to look at Google map again or search for
            more recent images and official maps.
            What is the tenure of the land (e.g. Council owned, controlled by State,
            Freehold land, Road Reserve) where the vegetation is located? Do students
            know how to find this out? Check with the local Council18.
            Is it under any kind of protection (e.g. State Forest, National Park, Forest
            Reserve, Council Open Space, Conservation Area, Land for Wildlife)? Check
            with the local Council. E.g. the Sunshine Coast Regional Council has
            numerous maps related to the Noosa Plan and other planning schemes19.
            Various regional Biodiversity Strategies20 may also provide some information.
            File any official maps and information obtained in the Herbarium Plus folder.
            These will become useful references for future lessons and research.

For secondary years Biology, Science 21, Technologies and ICT, consider the following:
   o “Regional Ecosystems in Queensland are defined as vegetation communities that
      are consistently associated with a particular combination of geology, landform and
      soil in a bioregion. A bioregion is an area delineated by broad landscape patterns
      that reflect the major geological structure, climate patterns and broad groups of
      plants and animals. There are 1351 REs in 13 bioregions in Queensland” EPA21.
      SE Queensland is recognized as one of the 13 bioregions.
            Which Regional Ecosystem (RE) does the area fall under? To find out,
            request a RE map specific to your area through the Environment Protection
            Agency website22. A central coordinate is required. This may be obtained as a
            GPS reading from the field or from existing maps or interactive online
            programs e.g. Google Earth (check system requirements23 before download
            and installation). The Department of Natural Resources and Water will also
            send you information about essential habitats and species in that area. Note
            that these maps and information are based on satellite images from 2003.
            Once the map (see Figure 1.1.2) and information are received (by email), go to
            www.epa.qld.gov.au/projects/redd/listing.cgi to find out what the individual
            codes for the identified REs refer to. E.g. the light green area from north of the
            Noosaville State School located earlier in Figure 1.1.1 to SW of Doonella lake
            is marked 12.9-10.4. This refers to Eucalytpus racemosa woodland on
            sedimentary rocks & is Not of concern. But south of the school across
            Beckman’s Road is a pink area labeled 12.5.3 which is an Endangered RE.
            Review and file all maps and information in the Herbarium Plus folder. These
            will become useful references for future lessons and research.

18
   www.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au/sitePage.cfm?code=planning (accessed Jan 09)
19
   www.noosa.qld.gov.au/PlanningDevelopment/PDMaps/PDMaps.shtml (accessed Jan 09)
20
   www.caloundra.qld.gov.au/website/cityEnvironment/environment/bio_strategy.asp (accessed Jan 09)
21
   www.nrw.qld.gov.au/vegetation/bioregions.html#remaps (accessed Jan 09)
22
   www.epa.qld.gov.au/nature_conservation/biodiversity/regional_ecosystems/introduction_and_status/Regional_Ecosys
tem_Maps/#lot (accessed Jan 09)
23
   http://earth.google.com/support/bin/topic.py?topic=17077 (accessed Jan 09)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                   Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009


Figure 1.1.2: Sample Regional Ecosystem map requested from EPA
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                      Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

Resource sheet 1.1.2: Ground-Truthing

Natural feature            Human-made   GPS Location & notes
                           feature
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                             Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

Related Activities / Resources

Activity 10 – Local area tour, in QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s my turf: Local
area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society and Environment in Middle Primary,
Level 3. p.8. Also Resource Sheet 4 on p. 15.

Activity 12 – Local waterway exploration, in QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s my
turf: Local area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society and Environment in
Middle Primary, Level 3. p.8. Also Resource Sheet 5 on p. 16–17.



Lesson 1.1.3: Mural of my school surrounds

Key Activities / Resources (about 3 hours)

This is an optional extension of Lesson 1.1.2. designed to foster team work and
presentation skills incorporating mapping techniques and art media.

Preparation and materials:
   o The maps, completed resource sheets and photographs from Lesson 1.1.2.
   o 3m x 3m calico or similar sized board as canvas
   o Paints and paintbrushes or colour chalk
   o Measuring tapes and rulers (optional)

In groups of 4 to 6:
    o Take turn to draw or transcribe their maps onto a single large map onto the Calico,
       clearly showing their school and the natural and human-made features identified in
       Lesson 1.1.1 and 1.1.2.
    o Paint and decorate the map.
    o When dry, add labels to show names (even GPS readings) of the key features,
       notably the borders of the natural vegetation, names and destinations of nearby
       creeks. Photographs may also be added.
    o Exhibit the mural in a prominent location of the school.

Related Activities / Resources

Jo-Anne Ferreira and Lisa Ryan, December 2006. Activity 10. My Catchment Mural, in
Teacher Resource File for Brisbane City Council: Water for Today and Tomorrow –
Watersense schools Program, Griffith University.
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                                                Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009


Unit 1.2: Research the past — changes through time
Purpose and Scope

This unit builds on the observations and findings of Unit 1.1 and maybe conducted as part
of the SOSE sourcebook module level 3: It’s my turf: local area study.

More specifically, this Unit encourages students to collect evidence about the past,
focusing on the changes in the extent of natural vegetation and landuse patterns in the
local area. Through the suggested activities, students reflect and discuss about the causes
(natural and anthropological) of such changes, and explore what the future of the local
area may be like.

Assessment Criteria for Core learning Outcomes in SOSE24,25

PS 3.4: Students use and make maps to identify coastal and land features, countries and
continents, and climate zones. Students:
   o relate old maps of Australia to contemporary ones

TCC 3.4: Students organize information about the causes and effects of specific historical
events.
   o Students list five changes in the local area that they have discovered though
      investigations and provide reasons for each change.

PS 3.5: Students describe the values underlying personal and other people’s actions
regarding familiar places.
    o Students select a local feature that is significant to them and represent it as a
       model, photographic display or other presentation. They accompany this
       representation with a description that reflects the value of this local feature and
       suggest a positive future for this feature.


Lesson 1.2.1: From the past to the future

Key Activities / Resources

Activity 2: Show and share: Defining and investigating primary sources, in QLD School
Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s my turf: Local area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of
Society and Environment in Middle Primary, Level 3, p.5.

Activity 17: Futures activity, in QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s my turf: Local
area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society and Environment in Middle Primary,
Level 3, p.10.




24
   QLD Studies Authority, 2000. SOSE Summary of Core Learning Outcomes. www.qsa.qld.edu.au/syllabus/1174.html
(accessed Dec 08)
25
   QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s my turf: Local area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society and
Environment in Middle Primary, Level 3. www.qsa.qld.edu.au/downloads/syllabus/kla_sose_sbm_304.pdf (accessed
Dec 08)
NICA What Local Native Plant is That?                             Curriculum draft of 14/01/2009

Activity 18: Demonstrating understandings about the local area, in QLD School Curriculum
Council, 1999. It’s my turf: Local area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society
and Environment in Middle Primary, Level 3, p.10.


Related Activities / Resources

Activity 6: Population changes in our loca area, in QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999.
It’s my turf: Local area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society and Environment
in Middle Primary, Level 3, p.6.

Activity 12: Local waterway exploration, in QLD School Curriculum Council, 1999. It’s my
turf: Local area study. Sourcebook module for Studies of Society and Environment in
Middle Primary, Level 3, p.8.

				
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