Project summaries: 2017 Eco Schools

Following an assessment of 155 proposals, the Environmental Trust on the recommendation of the independent Technical Review Committee, approved funding for 74 projects.

A total of $3500 has been allocated to each successful project across New South Wales.

OrganisationProject title
Adamstown Public School Kanduba Garden (place of bushtucker)
Ambarvale Public School Indigenous Cultural Garden
Anzac Park Public School Growing our community and our garden
Aspect Macarthur School Cobbitty Participation, engagement and understanding- sensory garden
Barmedman Public School From Garden to Plate
Bellevue Hill Public School AWARES (Anti-Waste, Always Recycling, Environmentally Sustainable)
Belmore Boys High School 4B – Bring back the birds and the bees
Bogangar Public School Caba LEARNscape
Bourke Primary School Bush Tucker Garden
Briar Road Public School 'Grow, Eat, Smile' Kitchen Garden in Amaroo Playground
Bungwahl Public School Sugar Bag Wrap
Canterbury South Public School Four Seasons Organic Food Garden
Caringbah High School The Bee all and End all – Increasing Biodiversity using Native Bees
Clarence Town Public School Clarence Town permaculture project
Coffs Harbour Public School Growing together
Collins Creek Public School What's in the box? Enhancing habitat for hollow dependent species
Corpus Christie Catholic Primary School St Ives Where does our food come from?
Daceyville Public School Reducing waste through paddock to plate
East Hills Boys High School Native retreat
Erina Heights Public School Native learnscape
Euabalong West Public School A Little Patch of 'The West'
Evans High School Improving Waste Management at Evans
Gerringong Public School Dhungang Nura – our knowledge in our bush tucker garden
Glenmore Park High School Glenmore Park health check (GP health check)
Glenquarry Public School Learning to care for ourselves and our environment
Hawkesbury High School Bush tucker garden and yarning circle
JJ Cahill Memorial High Growing fresh
John Therry Catholic High School Sustainable hydroponic food garden
Karonga Special School Renewed and sustainable: the courtyard makeover project
Kurri Kurri High School Kama Mayapa Wiyala (protect, plant and speak together)
Largs Public School Our native garden trail
Lavington Public School Young sprouts food garden and bush medicine garden
Liverpool West Primary School Sustainable school garden
Malabar Public School Let us grow
Megalong Public School The Megalong bush tucker trail and bottle brush gardens
Merewether Public School Hands in the earth: native bush tucker garden and garden club
Mimosa Public School Regenerating and cultivating gardens at Mimosa
Minerva School Learning for life
Mount Annan Christian College Amaroo Waters
Mount Keira Public School Exploring our creek ecosystem from within our living classroom
Mt St Benedict College Bennies bushcare begins
Narrabeen Lakes Public School Connections bush tucker garden with outdoor learning area
Nashdale Pubic School Nature playground as an erosion solution
Newport Public School Newport Public School Guringai food garden
Nillo Infants School Aboriginal bush tucker and medicinal garden Nillo Infants School
North Wagga Public School North Wagga nude food warriors
Our Lady of the Rosary, The Entrance Exploratory garden
Pretty Beach Public School Sensory garden
Quakers Hill Public School Quakers Hill Public School recycled bottle greenhouse
Queanbeyan East Public School Jubilee vegetable garden
Revesby South Public School Revesby South Public School know how to BEE eco friendly
Riverina Environmental Education Centre Citizen science – animal count
Rutherford Technology High School Support unit sensory garden
Ryde East Public School Developing a wildlife corridor
Sadleir Public School Vertical sensory garden
Scone Public School Bee wise for our future
South West Rocks Public School Recycling rocks at South West Rocks
St Bernard's Catholic Primary School Berowra Heights CHARM Garden – creative, healthy, active, responsible, mindful
St John the Evangelist Catholic Parish Primary School Yarning circle
St Joseph's Primary School Wauchope The next gen: establishing lifelong sustainable habits
St Martin's Catholic Primary School Learning beyond the classroom
St Mary's Catholic Primary School, Manly Going back to nature
St Marys North Public Edible school garden project
St Patrick's College Campbelltown St Pats re-think waste
St Paul's College Native edible garden
St Pius X Dubbo Food garden and cooking
Summer Hill Public School Summer Hill Environmental Leadership Learning Spaces (SHELLS)
Swansea High School Meapuliko – cultivating for the future
Taree High School Sustainable food supply
Tenterfield High School Healthy bodies, healthy minds
The Armidale Waldorf School (TAWS) Walking together – learning together
The Rock Central School Little steps – reducing our community's carbon footprint
Upper Coopers Creek Primary School The green umbrella program
Vaucluse Public School School community sustainability exhibition
Wagga Wagga High School The sixth sense sensory garden
Wambangalang Environmental Education Centre Bush camp kitchen
Wangee Park School Wangee Park's 'Dreamtime Garden'
Wiley Park Girls High Wiley sustainable ecogarden
Wiley Park Public School Our edible sensory garden
Woonona High School Where the environment and a safe place comes together
Wycliffe Christian School Wycliffe community garden
Yennora Public School Bush tucker garden

Schools A to G – project summaries

Adamstown Public School
Kanduba Garden (place of bushtucker)

Kanduba means 'place of bush tucker' in the Awabakal language. Students asked through their School Parliament to create a bush tucker garden transforming an underutilised grassed area into an outdoor classroom. Students will install raised garden beds and plant local bush tucker species, restoring some native habitat and increasing biodiversity.

A stand of trees and shrubs will be planted near the fence, including some non-local species. These new areas will connect with our native gardens, vegetable garden, and planned yarn circle. They will create a diverse, engaging and interactive outdoor learning space, with features developed specifically to support the learning needs of students with special needs.

Students will be involved in the design, planting, cultivation and ongoing care and learn about sustainable practices through blending traditional and modern methods. Members of the local Aboriginal community will assist students and teachers to learn about the bush plants and how to use them for food. Curriculum outcomes for all students will include focused learning on sustainability and knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal heritage, culture, language and landcare.

Ambarvale Public School
Indigenous Cultural Garden

An Indigenous cultural garden is an area containing grasses, bushes, shrubs and plants that are Indigenous to the local area, and hold significance to the local Aboriginal community. The Indigenous Cultural garden will enhance the school environment by providing students with opportunities to engage in and develop skills in team work, and increase their understanding of Aboriginal culture.

The garden will incorporate plants with traditional uses, covering fibre, shelter, tools, weapons and medicine. The garden will be developed in consultation with Tharawal, The Royal Botanic Gardens and community family members.

The area will be a resource for all Key Learning Areas and will be utilised through Brospeak and Sistaspeak sessions. Students will undertake workshops about the plants with traditional uses, covering fibre, shelter, tools and weapons and medicine.

Anzac Park Public School
Growing our community and our garden

Anzac Park is a newly established school that has been designed with an agricultural terrace that has yet to be developed. This grant will assist in developing an edible garden within this terrace, offering diverse benefits to students, teachers and the broader community.

The garden will promote environmental and sustainability learning linked to multiple Key Learning Areas. The garden will be used as a way to engage young people in learning for life about health, nutrition, the environment and developing broader life skills. It will also aim to establish an area to support learning for students with additional needs.

Aspect Macarthur School Cobbitty
Participation, engagement and understanding- sensory garden

Aspect will teach students on the Autism Spectrum about sustainability through creating a sensory garden and transforming food waste into compost. A larger scale garden will be created, including a sensory space, each class will have regular opportunities to take part in sustainable gardening activities including worm farming. Students will see the garden evolve with abundant fruit and vegetables, and will create garden art and sensory equipment from old recyclable materials. Students will also gain practical skills and experience in techniques of propagation, maintenance, integrated pest management, and will be equipped with the skills to successfully grow food and flowers.

Barmedman Public School
From Garden to Plate

Garden to plate is a project involving all staff and students at Barmedman Public School, as well as community volunteers. The project will provide students with an opportunity to access the food garden, learn how to grow a range of vegetables and herbs and provide opportunities to teach children about the nutritional benefits of eating these foods through cooking with their produce. The project will provide valuable life skills and foster positive connections between students and the environment.

Bellevue Hill Public School
AWARES (Anti-Waste, Always Recycling, Environmentally Sustainable)

Bellevue Hill Public School AWARES is about changing how students, staff, their families and the wider school community think about the way their waste impacts the world we live in. Bellevue Hill Public School will install co-mingled recycling bins alongside existing paper and waste bins in all its classrooms.

The project will implement waste education classes from years K-6 to foster a positive change for generations to come. The result will be less landfill, increased awareness of waste handling, potential waste collection savings and, most importantly, a renewed respect for our precious environment.

Belmore Boys High School
4B – Bring back the birds and the bees

The 4B project will engage students in the role of environmental conservationists to increase local biodiversity. The school grounds have not been designed well to achieve ideal environmental and educational outcomes, with outdoor areas being made from bitumen and/or populated with invasive weeds.

This project will establish a native garden retreat that will feature bird and bee attracting plants. In addition, the number of bee hives on school grounds will be increased as their food source increases along with the density of birdlife, bee and butterfly numbers.

Bogangar Public School
Caba LEARNscape

Bogangar Public School is located opposite Norries Headland; a high wind coastal environment. The existing school setting is dominated by the built environment. Trees and vegetation struggle to grow in the windy, high salt conditions.

This project proposes working with both the Tweed Shire Council Biodiversity Planners and Dorroughby Environmental Education Centre to educate staff and students on appropriate vegetation strategies for Australian conditions, with a focus on coastal environments. This knowledge will then be used to establish a natural outdoor learning space (LEARNscape) consisting of large canopy trees and understorey planting.

Students will explore the relationship between people, environment and place. Students will also develop and describe their LEARNscape ideas as well as establish some criteria to assess these ideas using a sustainability rating system. This process will consolidate and extend on the current whole of school focus on sustainability which has recently been applied across all learning areas and other aspects of school and community life.

Bourke Primary School
Bush Tucker Garden

As a Connected Communities school, Bourke Public School would like to create an outdoor bush tucker garden. By engaging in this project, students will gain an understanding of the relationship between traditional Aboriginal foods, the health of the environment, our impact on the Earth and our need to keep traditions and resources alive for sustainability.

Students will design, plan and establish a bush tucker garden through guidance with community members and the local Ngemba and Barkindji Aboriginal elders. Throughout this process, students will gain a deeper understanding of the local culture and historical land uses.

Briar Road Public School
'Grow, Eat, Smile' Kitchen Garden in Amaroo Playground

The Support Unit team at Briar Road strives to ensure special needs students are engaged in meaningful and authentic learning. Through establishing a Kitchen Garden, students will be engaged in purposeful experiences, that will support development of healthy attitudes towards food and the environment, as well as supporting their social, emotional and developmental needs.

Students will assist in the creation of garden beds, learn about basic crop rotation, soil health, and how to minimise pests and diseases with reduced use of chemical fertilisers and pest controls.

Fruit trees and vines will be planted nearby to increase the biodiversity in the Amaroo playground, in particular, the number of bees which are essential for a healthy eco-system.

Students will also attend an excursion to a Garden Workshop at Mt Annan Botanic Gardens to learn about gardening principles, and to foster a stronger sense of responsibility for our environment.

Bungwahl Public School
Sugar Bag Wrap

This project will teach students that every facet of our garden has a purpose, with the ultimate aim of 'Sustaining Sustainability' being a reduction in our school's carbon emissions. Students will discover and learn about biodiversity and biosecurity.

Stage 3 students will produce insectaries to attract beneficial insects, and will learn that native bees are beneficial. Students will be asked to set up native bee hives for both their bush tucker and vegetable gardens.

'Sugar Bag Wrap' is a student focused project that will highlight the importance of native bees. 'Sugar Bag Wrap' will build upon using beneficial insects to keep pests away, produce environmental friendly cling wrap from bee's wax as well as honey as a raw unprocessed ingredient for the kitchen.

Canterbury South Public School
Four Seasons Organic Food Garden

Students at Canterbury South Public School will create an organic 4 season rotational food garden to be used by students and the community for learning how to grow and cook seasonal foods. Students will practice crop rotation and learn about Integrated Pest Management, as well as investigating and learning about natural ways to prevent garden pests and disease.

The food garden is an extension of the existing school's food waste recycling project and will support the development of a closed loop sustainability system where compost produced onsite can be used to grow food. Practical, interactive learning will teach students how they can contribute to a healthy planet by growing food in a local urban environment.

Caringbah High School
The Bee all and End all – Increasing Biodiversity using Native Bees

Our school environment group, GreenEdge, have worked to create a number of native plant gardens within the school grounds. The gardens we have developed are homes for native plants, possums, lizards, birds and insects.

This project will extend this biodiversity and promote the pollination of our native plants (and the vegetable garden) by introducing hives of native bees. As well as adding another level of biodiversity to the gardens, the establishment of native beehives will add another element to the Environmental Education program, inspiring engineering students to create new and original hives.

Students will harvest the honey for unique culinary experiences, and participate in direct actions to help the native bee populations through planting suitable habitat trees, and increasing community awareness about the importance of bees.

The project will also investigate how Indigenous people have traditionally used honey for food and medicine.

Clarence Town Public School
Clarence Town permaculture project

We aim to establish a Crunch and Sip Garden to educate students on the importance of nutrition for health and wellbeing. Students will help with the design, establishment and maintenance of the gardens (including a bush tucker garden) and will also harvest and eat the produce.

The project will establish a Pizza Herb Garden using companion planting with herbs and plants that will eliminate the need for chemical pesticides and will educate on natural pest and weed control.

The project will contribute to the re-generation of habitat for the Tawny Frogmouth Owls that live in our playground.

The project will also include a worm farm and recycling system to reduce food waste, which will supplement both our Science and Technology Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE) programs.

Coffs Harbour Public School
Growing together

The 'Growing Together ' project will enable our school to have a safe and accessible area for students with special needs to take part in gardening in raised beds and the establishment and maintenance of a fruit orchard. There will be composting and worm farming included in the project to help our students understand the holistic process in gardening.

Early Stage 1 students will investigate the basic needs of living things and be involved in germinating and growing seedlings for the gardens.

Stage 2 students will investigate the role of living things in a habitat e.g. plants as producers and microbes as decomposers. They will collect data and work out how much organic waste is recycled each week and not contributing to landfill.

Stage 3 students will research the conditions of the environment and how these affect the growth and survival of living things. They will also be engaged in mulching and composting of garden beds, and undertaking soil testing.

Collins Creek Public School
What's in the box?

Enhancing habitat for hollow dependent species, the project will increase student and community knowledge of the behaviours of local native fauna. The goal is to enhance habitat for, and monitor the behaviour of, hollow dependent species such as sugar gliders, feather gliders and micro bats.

Students will work with The Border Ranges Richmond Valley Landcare Network to learn about the needs of and threats to these species and to build and install five specialised nesting boxes. Inhabitation of nesting boxes will be monitored via specialised cameras and a motion sensitive camera will record animal visitation of school grounds. Nest box occupation will be reported to the Hollows as Homes citizen science project and students will present learnings via videos uploaded to the web.

Corpus Christie Catholic Primary School St Ives
Where does our food come from?

Our project will create several edible garden spaces that will enable students to explore how living things grow and change. Students will gain an understanding of sustainable food sources and an appreciation of how fresh food gets to the supermarket. We will include composting, recycling and a worm farm to demonstrate the environmental benefits of a sustainable edible garden.

Students will share their produce with the school community by supplying our school canteen and families with freshly grown produce. The children will learn about plant life cycles and how their actions affect the environment. They will also learn about safe food handling and preparation, and the benefits of good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle.

Daceyville Public School
Reducing waste through paddock to plate

This project will increase students' understanding and awareness of where their food comes from and how they can reduce waste by eating more natural, locally sourced food. Through the integration of a chicken coop into the school vegetable gardens, students will see how food waste can be used to feed other animals, and then how those animals can contribute to the vegetable garden. This project will help the school to reduce waste and to develop more sustainable practices.

East Hills Boys High School
Native retreat

Students will develop knowledge of local native flora by designing and implementing a native garden. The establishment of a sustainable, native garden at East Hills Boys High School will provide students with a cross-curricular, outdoor learning site to engage students in sustainable practices. The development of native habitats will build awareness of the impact of humans on their environment.

Students will study a living things unit, investigating and predicting how human activities can affect interactions in food chains and food webs. They will examine the different perspectives of land management via a cross-curricular program that contrasts European and Aboriginal land use practices. They will design and construct a native garden and create a sculpture that exhibits the cultural perspectives of land management.

Erina Heights Public School
Native learnscape

Erina Heights is rejuvenating a section of a garden into a Native Bush tucker Learnscape. The aim is for all students to become informed global citizens, take ownership and be culturally aware. By rejuvenating the garden, the project will provide authentic learning pathways to students, staff and the wider community.

The future-focused project has a whole of school approach embedding Aboriginal perspectives. All 345 students will take part in designing, implementing, caretaking, learning and producing. This sustainability project will also enhance and promote healthy eating, community connections and add an additional learning space to the school grounds.

Euabalong West Public School
A Little Patch of 'The West'

A Little Patch of 'The West' is a school run community project to create a sustainable community vegetable garden, that can be accessed and contributed to by the local community, with the reward of fresh produce. Euabalong West is in an isolated community, access to fresh vegetables is very difficult. Therefore, with this community vegetable garden, there will be a steady flow of fresh produce for the families and the small local community. This will be a focal point of our community and bring a sense of belonging to our students.

Evans High School
Improving waste management at Evans

The project will increase students understanding of the amount of waste our school community produces and the impact this has on our environment. Students will be empowered to put into practice sustainable waste reduction mechanisms through the completion of a program involving a waste audit, a local council education program and waste management field study. Students will then design and implement a plan to reduce the amount of waste our school community uses, involving the use of organic waste to produce compost for school gardens and the collection of recyclable non-organic resources. Findings and results of the program will be showcased to our school community.

Gerringong Public School
Dhungang Nura – our knowledge in our bush tucker garden

In 2015 we identified an area of neglected land within the school grounds and developed it into a Bush Tucker garden with a Yarning circle. This project will further develop its usefulness as a curriculum resource through:

  • installing permanent signs and markers to identify plants and create educational trails
  • building a database of information that utilises QR (Quick Response) codes to log student research, drawings and photographs (as part of an ongoing project)
  • collaborating with a range of community groups including Illawarra Landcare and local Aboriginal elders to help us improve our bush regeneration skills, Indigenous plant use knowledge, and to ensure that sustainability and longevity of the garden.

Glenmore Park High School
Glenmore Park health check (GP health check)

The GP Health Check is a three tiered project established around the Glenmore Lock as the centre point of the community.

  1. The removal of noxious carp from the Glenmore Lock to help aquatic plants grow, increasing oxygen output and improving the biodiversity, while potentially minimising potential pollutants flowing into Nepean River.
  2. An ecological case study of the three major locations to compare their features, determining the effect urbanisation has had on these areas and making positive changes to minimise pollution and promote biodiversity.
  3. Establishment of a ClimateWatch Trail to promote community involvement, and taking environmental education beyond the school setting.

Glenquarry Public School
Learning to care for ourselves and our environment

Through strong community partnerships Glenquarry Public School will teach students about bush regeneration, wildlife protection, and sustainable living. Adults who passionately live what they believe are powerful role models for children.

Our partnership with wildlife organisations, local Aboriginal elders, local council and businesses will help our children understand that they can make a difference if we all work together.

Students will construct garden beds, learn how to recycle through composting, worm farm, and keep chickens.

Students will be taught sustainable methods of weed control, companion planting and how to use indigenous plants to prevent soil erosion.

Nest boxes to provide habitat for native wildlife will also be installed.

Schools H to N – project summaries

Hawkesbury High School
Bush tucker garden and yarning circle

Students, teachers and Aboriginal community members and educators will work collaboratively to establish a 'Bush Tucker' garden at the school, including a native bee hive. The garden will attract native birds, insects and animals. The garden will be planted with species used traditionally by Aboriginal communities, and will become a community educational and environmental resource for sustainability education.

A 'Yarning Circle' will be created as a place where local Aboriginal elders can teach students about the significance of the Hawkesbury High School site to the Daruk people, the traditional custodians.

Students will learn about Aboriginal culture, heritage and the importance of environmental sustainability and connection to the land. Because of this collaborative learning, students will develop a higher degree of appreciation for the environment and its significance to past and future generations.

JJ Cahill Memorial High
Growing fresh

Growing, raising or cultivating food sources is not a well understood process at our inner-city school. Poor food choices, a lack of exercise, green space and the availability of processed food are just some of the reasons for this.

This project aims to increase student's leadership, knowledge and participation in creating a functioning and sustainable school garden that will encourage students to make confident lifelong healthy food choices.

Students will design and implement a food waste recycling system in the school garden, and visit North Sydney's Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability to see first-hand how the site was transformed from an industrial site into a place for the community to learn about environmental sustainability.

Students will be asked to create materials on the importance of nutrient recycling and the impact of using organic fertilisers over chemical fertilisers.

John Therry Catholic High School
Sustainable hydroponic food garden

The project will focus on creating a hydroponic food garden that will be connected to an existing rain water tank. The purpose of the project will be to provide the school community with an opportunity to experience modern, sustainable farming practices and encourage participation in sustainable living practices at school, that have significant benefits for application at home.

John Therry has a significant number of students with higher level of needs and the project is needed to encourage and empower our students to engage with their learning in a practical and fulfilling way.

The project will encourage social responsibility and model sustainable practices to our students and therefore our wider community.

Karonga Special School
Renewed and sustainable: the courtyard makeover project

This project will revitalise a place within the school by creating a new system of garden beds that will be accessible to all students, including students in wheelchairs or with mobility issues. Incorporating horticulture and gardening principles already in use in the school, the project will teach students how to design and construct fruit and vegetable gardens, and create an additional 'quiet space' for students.

The project will be primarily undertaken by Year 10, 11 and 12 students as part of their Science, Horticulture and Work Education programs.

The produce from the project (vegetables/fruit) will be used within the school community as part of the Cooking and Food technology subjects by students across the school from K-12.

A media production will be developed by the students as a means of highlighting the project and celebrating the skills of our students as active developers within the school community.

Kurri Kurri High School
Kama Mayapa Wiyala (protect, plant and speak together)

Students will design and help construct an outdoor classroom, garden and significant meeting place on Wonnarua land. The space will include a range of plants that students will cultivate and involve cross generational community and cultural connection.

Our students experience limited access to community spaces, due to special needs and complex behaviours. This Garden to Plate sustainability program (Indigenous and non-Indigenous plants), incorporates vocational preparedness. Activities include a whole school recycling program (materials and food scraps), supporting and nurturing connections between special education and mainstream, parents and community. Relationships with Aboriginal Elders will be fostered through workshops and open days.

This project is the first step in a school sustainability program.

Largs Public School
Our native garden trail

Largs Public School students will create a native garden trail, designed for and by students. Students will liaise with the school community to design a large walk-through garden consisting of native and indigenous plants.

The garden will provide opportunities for students to interact with and learn about native flora and fauna and sustainability. Through incorporating Bush-Tucker plants the garden will also enhance the knowledge of local Aboriginal culture and traditions.

The garden will be big enough to be a quiet refuge during break times, but large enough to accommodate a whole class for teaching/learning activities.

Lavington Public School
Young sprouts food garden and bush medicine garden

Young Sprouts Food and Bush Tucker/Medicine Garden is a multi-layered approach to learning for sustainability. The project will ultimately create a Food and Bush Tucker/Medicine Garden which will include an outdoor classroom area. The garden will enhance student's appreciation for nature, and facilitate learning for sustainability.

The project will build a space for integrated learning experiences about sustainability, and provide an alternate learning environment for targeted students, where the classroom is outside to improve their engagement and attitude towards learning. This will occur in the 'design' and 'construction' phase of the project in which they will play major roles, and become hands on in all aspects of its development.

The 'Use' phase of the project allows all teachers and students within the school to undertake learning experiences in the outdoor classroom that will support learning for sustainability and help build a culture of sustainability within the school and the community.

Liverpool West Primary School
Sustainable school garden

Liverpool West Public School will create a sustainable vegetable garden to promote, educate and engage students on the importance of sustainability.

Working with staff from the Royal Botanical Gardens, students will learn about healthy eating and be encouraged to grow their own vegetables at home. Students will learn how to grow different Australian plants and native foods, and will be in charge of watering and maintaining a productive wicking garden.

They will learn about water efficiency, worm farming and the benefits of composting. Students will also learn about food packaging, and how to reduce food wastage.

Malabar Public School
Let us grow

Let Us Grow aims to introduce the concept of paddock to plate. Many of our students live in apartments or do not have access to a vegetable garden. We aim to teach students about the importance of organic food cultivation, the skill of cooking seasonally and how to compost.

This will be complemented by a native corridor garden, which will include native plant species, and indigenous food plants, to support the native fauna and flora of the neighbouring Malabar Headlands National Park. This tranquil area will educate students on indigenous foods and diversity in our native forests.

Megalong Public School
The Megalong bush tucker trail and bottle brush gardens

Students will establish a Bush Tucker Trail within the school grounds, and a Bottle Brush Garden comprised of a newly-discovered species (Callistemon Megalongenis) found only within our part of the Megalong Valley.

This project will provide ongoing learning opportunities to teach the children about sustainability principles, including biodiversity and ecosystems.

We will work with our local Council and community to share our knowledge, and, through propagation, distribute the Bottle Brush throughout the Megalong Valley.

Over time, we hope to increase biodiversity and contribute towards the growth of this new native species, ensuring its long term survival.

Merewether Public School
Hands in the earth: native bush tucker garden and garden club

This project takes students and teachers on an educational journey; to discover how much compostable food waste the school generates, then learn in the classroom how compostable waste can be a source of potential energy for gardening, fertilizing and improving soil quality.

Students will then implement worm farming, seed growing projects, and use their hands and creative minds to design, build and plant a native and bush tucker gardens.

Situated in the Awabakal nation lands, and with an Indigenous student population of 14%, this project will help define our school's identity, as a place that supports and integrates traditional and sustainable cultures.

Mimosa Public School
Regenerating and cultivating gardens at Mimosa

This project includes a number of measures to regenerate part of a state forest within the school grounds and reduce the amount of rubbish that ends up in landfill each year, that is generated by the staff and students of Mimosa Public School. This will be achieved through hands-on environmental learning opportunities.

The main aspects of this program are regenerating an outdoor learning space, initiating plastic recycling, introducing a waste-free day and re-establishing and expanding a composting system and worm farm which will add to the sustainability of our school vegetable garden.

Minerva School
Learning for life

Our school motto is Learning for Life and a major focus for our students is the development of functional life skills and social skills. We will develop a sustainable community garden at our school in which students will learn to care for chickens. They will plant, grow and harvest vegetables, and develop an appreciation and understanding of healthy eating.

We will involve the local community by selling produce and inviting mentors to come in and work in the garden with the students. Our students will develop animal care and gardening skills as well as money handling, budgeting, communication and social skills.

Mount Annan Christian College
Amaroo Waters

'Amaroo' is an Aboriginal term for 'Beautiful Place'. We will build an aquaponics garden, called Amaroo Garden. This garden will provide a space that will educate our students and community on sustainable living practices, water management/catchment and safe wholefood production.

We will transform an arid section of the College into a useable productive environment. It will become an educational hub that will be used to teach about garden and food production practices, and will be available for different community groups and schools to access. It will encourage biodiversity through the use to native plants which in turn will attract native birds and bees.

Amaroo Gardens will be accessed by all stages from Prep to Year 12 HSC students.

Mount Keira Public School
Exploring our creek ecosystem from within our living classroom

Over time the growth of highly invasive weeds has blocked access to 135 square metres of our school grounds and the creek ecosystem.

This project will reclaim the much needed 10% of school land and reintroduce native species found locally into our waterway.

In a hands-on approach to biodiversity conservation, our students, teachers, and the wider community will work in partnership with our local Council to re-purpose the natural ecosystem as a living classroom where students will engage with, rehabilitate, and protect, its ecological and educational significance.

Mt St Benedict College
Bennies bushcare begins

Mt St Benedict College has recently taken on a 90-year lease of the Ludovic Blackwood Memorial reserve from the National Trust. This is a significant piece of Blue Gum High Forest (BGHF), being one of the places the Bradley sisters first started bush regeneration.

This project will continue on the work that Doug Benson of the Botanic Gardens started in the mid 70's, and will work with the local bushcare group, under the guidance of the National Trust, in engaging and involving students in Bushcare.

Teaching opportunities will be created within the BGHF, ensuring students connect deeply to the local environment.

Narrabeen Lakes Public School
Connections bush tucker garden with outdoor learning area

Narrabeen Lakes Public School (NLPS) will enhance its strong connection with culture and the environment by creating a bush tucker garden and outdoor learning area within the school grounds.

A bush tucker garden will create a space for Aboriginal story-telling, culture and heritage and will facilitate reconciliation in the local Northern Beaches area. The bush tucker garden will meet the curriculum standards and ethos of a school which promotes an understanding of connections to our environment on many levels, and a place to learn about food production and healthy ecosystems.

The Pittwater Community of Schools has awarded NLPS as caretaker of the message stick for 2017-18. A bush tucker garden will celebrate this achievement and provide a place for ceremony and acknowledgement of Aboriginal history and culture.

Nashdale Pubic School
Nature playground as an erosion solution

High rainfall has resulted in the school yard being bisected by an eroded gully, caused by storm water runoff after a downpour. Working with local community experts, the project will build a nature playground in the form of a dry creek bed, and plant 300 specially selected plants to:

  • slow the water down when it drains away and stop the soil erosion
  • teach students and the community about erosion and how to prevent it, and how local native plant species can be used as a solution
  • provide students with a resource for future studies of biodiversity.

Students will explore solutions, including devising a plan to use rocks and plants to slow the water down, assist with planting, and learn about the wildlife that the new plants will support.

Newport Public School
Newport Public School Guringai food garden

The School currently travels to external facilities to view and learn about Bush Tucker plants and the local Guringai Aboriginal people. An on-site garden and outdoor learning area will enable students to learn and put this knowledge into practice in their own back yard.

Students will learn about the benefits to our health and the environment of growing Australian native food plants locally. They will also learn about the Aboriginal Guringai people of the Pittwater area.

The project will research local habitats and plant species that will regenerate and preserve those habitats.

The project will also give our staff teaching tools across the curriculum such as making healthy choices, learning about and caring for our natural environment, and looking at sustainable care for country practiced by the traditional owners of the land.

Nillo Infants School
Aboriginal bush tucker and medicinal garden Nillo Infants School

The Aboriginal Bush Tucker and Medicinal Garden at Nillo Infants School will increase student knowledge of how the local area was vegetated before it became a residential area.

Using the knowledge of older Lorn residents and the traditional owners of this land, the Awabakal people, Nillo Infants students will design a Bush Tucker and Medicinal garden for the playground. It will incorporate Aboriginal patterns and artworks in the design to create a garden area that all members of our community can access, and enjoy the calm and respectful environment.

Knowledge will be gained from local residents and also professional members of our parent community who have knowledge of the local environment.

This garden will be designed using sustainable attributes to support sharing of knowledge about local Aboriginal culture for years to come. Teachers will gain professional knowledge from local experts in this area.

The garden will provide a sanctuary for students and the adult community at Nillo Infants School, as well as the local fauna.

North Wagga Public School
North Wagga nude food warriors

Our school's existing vegetable garden is in a shady 'out of bounds' area of the school under-utilised by our students. Our plan is to relocate it to a central area, enlarge it, and transform it into a flourishing kitchen garden that is accessible to and maintained by the entire school.

Students will be involved in all aspects of the garden from selecting the right plants for the position and season, nurturing and harvesting them, and enjoying the produce, some of which will be utilised in the school canteen.

Students will maintain a compost heap from lunchbox waste, learn about sustainability, nutrition and healthy eating.

Schools O to S – project summaries

Our Lady of the Rosary, The Entrance
Exploratory garden

This project will create a garden and outdoor learning space for primary students across all stages. Students will design the garden and learn about sustainability. Students will develop an appreciation of the natural environment and be provided with a platform for ongoing environmental education.

The project will link with Aboriginal heritage to gain advice from local Aboriginal elders about bush tucker and plantings.

Advice will also be gained from the local council in relation to appropriate native plants suitable for the area. Teacher Professional Development will involve how the environment fosters learning in an outdoor learning space.

Curriculum based learning will take place though Geography, through units of learning 'Australian Flora', 'places and change' and 'weather patterns and effects' across Stages 1,2 and 3. Further learning will be delivered through Science and Technology.

Pretty Beach Pubilc School
Sensory garden

Pretty Beach Public School will establish a sensory garden to provide a natural and calming place for students to develop, learn, interact and grow. It will support students with specific learning needs and encourage environmental sustainability across all Key Learning Areas. Students will engage the senses by exploring different colours, textures, smells, taste and sounds in a calming natural environment, while also learning about flora and fauna. Students will learn about food productivity, import and export, economic and environmental sustainability. Importantly, they will learn about ways to look after plants and animals in their immediate environment.

Quakers Hill Public School
Quakers Hill Public School recycled bottle greenhouse

Students will recycle plastic bottles to construct the magnificent Quakers Hill Public School (QHPS) Recycled Bottle Greenhouse. This greenhouse will not only complement our Science programs from K-6, but will also provide students with rich, hands-on learning tasks across all subjects, such as Mathematics and Literacy. It will provide a fun outdoor learning experience for all students to learn about Environmental Science and Sustainability in creative ways.

Seedlings will be planted in our school's vegetable gardens. Furthermore, seedlings will be sold to the school community to encourage students to start their own gardens at home, and therefore learn about sustainability in the process.

The school kitchen will also be utilised to teach students how food comes from the paddock to our plate.

Queanbeyan East Public School
Jubilee vegetable garden

Queanbeyan East will explore environmental education through the design and creation of raised garden beds.

The objective of this garden is to provide an opportunity for students and staff to gain a greater understanding of how recycling can be integrated into everyday life and the relationship between good waste management, food production and overall environmental health.

Students will learn how the environment is impacted by people and how we can live in a more sustainable way by making simple changes to our lifestyles.

Our vegetable garden will be used and cared for by all year groups including the support class, and will include the establishment of composting and worm farming facilities.

Students will learn how to grow, harvest, prepare and share seasonal fresh food, with an emphasis on students gaining a better understanding of how their food choices impact their health.

Revesby South Public School
Revesby South Public School know how to BEE eco friendly

It has never been more important to educate our children on the importance of our natural environment, to cultivate their interest and prepare them to take on the environmental challenges we face. Our 'Know How To BEE Eco friendly' project will provide insight into a number of environmental issues through hands-on learning, powerful connection.

Our project seeks to stimulate curiosity in our children about the natural world by using an example of one the world's greatest pollinators. Educational beehives are a fantastic tool to teach our children about having respect for pollinators and their role in nature and food production.

Riverina Environmental Education Centre
Citizen science – animal count

The purpose of this project is to connect students with their local environment through a Citizen science project collecting data on the animals living within specific ecosystems, through environmental education and Citizen Science strategies.

Primary and secondary school students will use motion sensor cameras to perform an audit of the native and introduced fauna present in their school setting. Students will be taught the skills to collect, analyse and interpret the collected data to upload to the Atlas of Living Australia, with the identification of icon species for their local ecosystems being the desired outcome.

Rutherford Technology High School
Support unit sensory garden

Our Support Unit intends to establish an eco-friendly, sensory garden as a fun educational tool to promote environmental awareness, and explore student’s senses through nature and play. Seminal research suggests that people with special needs benefit from an array of sensory stimulation, which aids emotional and mental wellbeing. The garden will embrace sustainability while providing a safe environment for our students to explore their five senses, and enjoy nature in a safe and tactile environment. The range of educational, emotional and mental health benefits will be countless. The garden will be an extension of the school’s indoor classroom, rather than just an outdoor space.

Ryde East Public School
Developing a wildlife corridor

The project will plant native shrubs to enhance the wildlife corridor between two important remnant urban bushlands, the Field of Mars Wildlife Refuge and the Wallumetta Nature Reserve. Both of these Reserves contain endangered Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest, with the school's unique location creating an opportunity to develop and enhance this corridor.

The school grounds are predominantly on Wianamatta Shale and students will learn through curriculum based activities the importance of appropriate planting for this area and soil types of the region.

The school's Natural Environment Group has already been working towards this objective and, through involvement in working bees, parents will understand and support this project.

Sadleir Public School
Vertical sensory garden

The Vertical Sensory Garden Project is a carefully designed planting area designed to provide sensory input, that is both calming and stimulatory for students with sensory processing disorders. A sensory garden can be therapeutic for students with sensory processing needs or who have experienced trauma. This environment supports students to learn, interact, calm and stimulate the senses and explore nature. Students are encouraged to look, taste, smell and touch plants in the natural environment. A sensory approach supports our students to be 'in the zone for learning', learn to have sensory needs met, and be functional and engaged learners. The sensory garden provides a fun educational tool to explore and learn about nature and how to care for living things.

Scone Public School
Bee wise for our future

Scone Public Schools existing gardens inadequately attract pollinators, a recent workshop facilitated by Scone Landcare Inc. recognised the need for a bee friendly native garden. This project will create a bee friendly, native garden in association with community groups for all students.

Students will participate in direct actions to help native bee populations including the construction of new garden beds with bee-attracting plants, building 'bee hotels' and increasing community awareness.

Our school will develop stronger connections with Landcare and the local nursery, Scone preschools and parents will be invited to attend our school-based, community playgroup.

Local groups will promote bee friendly, native gardens to our community and visiting groups will gain an increased knowledge of how to incorporate native plants and 'bee hotels' in their gardens.

South West Rocks Public School
Recycling rocks at South West Rocks

South West Rocks Public School will establish the 4R Program (Recycle, Reuse, Reduce, Refuse) with the aim of reducing the school's waste. Currently most of the school's waste goes to landfill.

The Student Representative Council has identified a need to introduce a recycling program to sort and manage the school's waste and reduce the amount of rubbish by promoting the reuse of water bottles and reusable food containers. Education will empower students to reuse packaging and make healthier food choices.

The program will be supported by environmental curriculum units for use by classroom teachers and staff development will train teachers on ways to integrate sustainability and environmental awareness into current curriculum.

St Bernard's Catholic Primary School Berowra Heights
CHARM Garden – creative, healthy, active, responsible, mindful

This project will create a garden to provide students with real and tangible ways in which to deeply investigate environmental sustainability. Students will describe what plants need to survive, learn about the importance of native vegetation, growth patterns in plants, and study the stages of plant lifecycles.

Students having difficulty with social and emotional skill development will be provided with a calming place where they can explore nature, where they can touch, smell, taste and interact with the environment.

We aim to be able to provide our healthy canteen with simple produce that can be used in morning teas, lunches and 'crunch and sip' time. This will springboard into investigating sustainability on a wider scale.

St John the Evangelist Catholic Parish Primary School
Yarning circle

We will reinvent a barren space in our school. It will be both a meeting place and an environmental learning space. Students will learn about reducing, reusing and recycling during the construction of the space and will have input into the flora that will be used in both the bush tucker and edible gardens. They will contribute to how we will adhere with these 3 R's when creating the space.

Once the space is complete, it will be used for; community elders to gather, outdoor lessons, experiential learning about plants, and to learn about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, food and sustainability.

St Joseph's Primary School Wauchope
The next gen: establishing lifelong sustainable habits

Through education and action, this project will see our school reduce its impact on our environment and establish long term sustainable practises.

The child friendly waste infrastructure will allow students to take responsibility for managing their own waste. Ownership of this will deepen students' commitment to reducing landfill, contribute to the establishment of life long sustainability behaviours and ensure the continued success of the project. Students will experience first-hand, the value of recycling organic waste.

The project will also build on the existing vegetable gardening program, to further deepen student's skills in understanding sustainable practises of water harvesting, composting and mulching.

St Martin's Catholic Primary School
Learning beyond the classroom

In 2014, our students designed an outdoor learning/play area that has become a central part of our school. We would like to complement this area with a learning/garden area that would incorporate raised vegetable gardens, local native plantings and waste reduction measures through worm farms, and an outdoor sacred space.

This extension will be used by all classes to continue our Learning Beyond the Classroom project through investigating the local environment and the needs of plants and animals.

We will use the outdoor sacred space as a focal point for celebrations of thanksgiving and remembrance.

We will make use of all stakeholders in our school community as well as local experts.

St Mary's Catholic Primary School, Manly
Going back to nature

At St Mary's we are working to promote active awareness of the biodiversity in our area. We will engage students and parents in creating a native garden that will include bush tucker and native bee attracting plants.

Our intention is to enable the community to nurture and recognise the value of native plants.

Our school grounds have limited space for planting and, as a result, we will ensure all plants are native. In doing so we will encourage growth of the native animals and insects in our ecosystem. This in turn is the reason we are keen to include a native bee colony in our school environment.

We will work with local nurseries to ensure we select appropriate plants, and increase awareness of native plants and their impact on the country.

We will educate students on the wonders of native plants and support the awareness of the importance that bees play as essential pollinators in the food chain.

St Marys North Public
Edible school garden project

Our project will re-invigorate and expand the school's Vegetable Gardening program. We will establish a new garden bed, grow fruits such as lemons and passionfruit, re-establish two worm farms and utilise composting bins.

Produce will be used to support the 'crunch and sip' program and it will also provide opportunities to integrate curriculum across a range of subject areas including Science, Mathematics, Health and Wellbeing and Creative Arts.

Students will conduct a waste audit, learn mathematical problem-solving strategies by collecting and working with data on the number of recycle bins emptied each week and volumes of waste recycled, as well as undertaking soil testing.

St Patrick's College Campbelltown
St Pats re-think waste

St Patrick's College has beautiful grounds with many native plants and birds. However, the Student Environment Council has identified the need to reduce our waste. We need to become wiser by rethinking our waste production and eventually move towards a waste-free environment. This not only improves and reinvigorates our current recycling system but it will embed a culture of creating less waste.

This waste management and reduction project will assist the community in understanding the importance of reducing, reusing and recycling to manage waste and plastic and demonstrate sustainability through a new recycling system, underpinned by a well-resourced educational program.

St Paul's College
Native edible garden

The aim of our project is to create a sustainable native food garden that will provide habitat for native wildlife, provide educational opportunities for students to learn about native edible plants and connect with local indigenous culture and heritage.

The garden will contain at least 5 different species of native edible plants for all students to access and will tie into the Science, Hospitality, Food Technology, Art, Technics and Agriculture curriculums.

The local Aboriginal community will be invited to teach our students how to do dot paintings on rocks and totem poles that will be incorporated into the garden.

St Pius X Dubbo
Food garden and cooking

St Pius X is working towards a hands-on approach to teach students about preparing soil and growing and harvesting produce that can then be used in cooking for Science and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) units of work throughout all stages. This will develop their awareness of how food production can impact on our environment, including the ability of ecosystems to provide water, nutrient rich soils, control pests and support pollinators.

The trees and bushes we plan to plant will encourage more birds and insects which, in turn, will promote better growth and more successful harvesting.

Summer Hill Public School
Summer Hill Environmental Leadership Learning Spaces (SHELLS)

Students will establish a biodiverse habitat and bird sanctuary within an enclosed area of the school. The area and surrounds will be used as a learning resource so that the elements of the biodiverse habitat can be observed and used to demonstrate principles of sustainability.

Students will help design, plan and set up the biodiverse space, incorporating a focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) and Future Earth. Using local indigenous species for shelter and food, they will set up different zones, including areas for native pasture, some flowering plants and climbers, spiky shrubs and taller flowering shrubs under established larger trees.

Swansea High School
Meapuliko – cultivating for the future

Our project aims to create a sustainable outdoor interactive environmental learning space that will connect our students across all Key Learning Areas to the environment.

Our project includes the development, implementation and maintenance of a garden area that will produce a sustainable source of fresh vegetables and bush tucker. This will allow our students to see how environmental practices can be used in both their learning but also in their household environments.

Our produce will be sold to our Canteen and our Technology and Applied Sciences department. Profits will be reinvested into the maintenance and continued development of our garden. This garden will form an integral part of our student learning and will be an effective hands on environmental resource for the whole school community.

Schools T to Y – project summaries

Taree High School
Sustainable food supply

Establishing a composting system will create compost for our existing food gardens. This will provide nutrients and bulk to replenish the soil in a economical and environmentally sustainable way.

An existing greenhouse will provide seedlings for seasonal planting in an economically and environmentally sustainable way. Unused rainwater already harvested will be utilised in both the existing gardens and the proposed new gardens.

Tenterfield High School
Healthy bodies, healthy minds

The students of Room 8 and 11 at Tenterfield High School have intellectual and physical disabilities. A number of our students have a mental health diagnosis which greatly affects the way they perceive themselves, their relationships with others, and their ability to cope in stressful environments.

This project, 'Healthy Bodies, Healthy Minds' will give these students a sense of pride from building a tangible project and the accomplishment of being part of delivering a finished product. Students will learn valuable hands-on skills which may be transferable into the workforce as well as being part of a team.

Students will create and a garden to develop writing and comprehension skills through procedure texts, learn concepts of time management, ratios, graphing, measurement, volume, area, length, and width. They will also study plant growth and photosynthesis.

The Armidale Waldorf School (TAWS)
Walking together – learning together

The Armidale Waldorf School (TAWS) will partner with local Aboriginal organisation and other environment and Landcare groups to create an interpretive Indigenous bush food/medicine walk within the TAWS school grounds. The walk will incorporate Bilingual signage (Anaiwan/English), and will enrich the biodiversity of our school by planting locally grown native species in existing gardens and/or through the establishment of new garden beds.

This project provides opportunities for students to learn about the natural environment through the lens of local Indigenous knowledge, language and culture. They will develop a fuller appreciation of the link between caring for our local environment and long-term sustainability.

The Rock Central School
Little steps – reducing our community's carbon footprint

The 'Little Steps' refers to:

  1. each of the 'little steps' taken towards 'reducing our community's carbon footprint'
  2. the smaller physical steps that Primary school students take when working with the project.

The aim of the project is to educate students from Kindergarten to Year 10 on the benefits of recycling organic 'waste' and converting this into nutrient rich soil to grow fresh vegetables. Already we are reducing our communities footprint by recycling: grass clippings/organic waste from the local council, scraps/newspapers from the local retailer, scraps from classrooms daily and grass clippings from local mowing businesses.

Upper Coopers Creek Primary School
The green umbrella program

Through consultation with students, the P&C and community members we have developed a plan for an overarching strategy on environmental education and sustainability at our school. The Green Umbrella Program will implement a whole of school approach to sustainability and environmental education that includes the establishment of a bush tucker garden, and native vegetation regeneration activities in collaboration with the local community.

The project will provide unique opportunities for environmental learning to compliment the curriculum. It will strengthen linkages with the local community and connect students to indigenous culture, while helping to improve the biodiversity of the local environment.

Located along the waterway at a critical junction where community projects have re-established wildlife corridors, the school views this project as an opportunity to further engage with the local community and ensure we offer a best practice example.

Vaucluse Public School
School community sustainability exhibition

Vaucluse School will purchase signage for the playground that communicate environmental messages; 'put your waste in the bin'. 'compost here', 'how nude is your food?' and 'keep rubbish out of our waterways'. To celebrate and make signs meaningful students will do a local beach clean, documenting it in a short film which will be played at an assembly and exhibition. The whole school will create works to be displayed, communicating to the school and local community our ongoing commitment to sustainable practise and education and allow students to generalise knowledge and skills.

Wagga Wagga High School
The sixth sense sensory garden

Our inclusive sensory garden will make use of an unutilised area within the school grounds. It will incorporate a whole school approach toward the design, construction, maintenance and most importantly use. The sensory garden will have multiple purposes including agricultural and environmental learning, and a supportive space for students assisting them with continued wellbeing and emotional support. The garden will also cater to students who require further sensory exploration, or students who have sensory issues to be stimulated in a safe, comfortable environment. To support refugee students who have settled in Wagga Wagga, the garden will also be utilised as a cultural learning area where they can experience and teach their peers about foods, native to their cultures. Students will learn to care for the garden by maintaining the area whilst learning to use recycled materials, reduce waste and utilise composting scraps from the school kitchen.

Wambangalang Environmental Education Centre
Bush camp kitchen

The Wambangalang Bush Camp Garden has been designed to fulfil a number of needs. The garden space will include raised garden beds to provide teaching and learning opportunities for visiting students and teachers on how to grow and maintain their own produce, including propagating seeds. It will also provide opportunities to demonstrate to teachers how to link a garden program with curriculum areas including; design and technology, science, art and even STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths).

The gardens will allow us to integrate the cross-curricular priority of Sustainability and contribute to life skills and student scientific literacy in discussions about buying local, food miles and implications for climate change. The produce will also be available for groups that stay overnight to use within their camp cooking programs.

Surrounding the garden beds, will be a berm (elevated) garden comprised of bush tucker plants. This will provide us with an opportunity to enrich our current Aboriginal programs and also provide native species for inclusion with our native bird aviary for their enrichment.

This garden will also contain some green tipis and sand gardens, for mindfulness activities for students to connect with nature.

Wangee Park School
Wangee Park's 'Dreamtime Garden'

The 'Dreamtime Garden' will have multiple uses, meeting the needs of all our students. One aspect of this garden will be a daily living skills workable 'Gardening Program' based around students 'learning by doing'; through structured, hands-on activities including planting, watering, mulching, harvesting and composting.

A compost hub will be developed to place the compost food waste from classrooms and the staff room, increasing environmental awareness and responsible behaviour, actively engaging students in the learning process. These garden beds would be based on the Aboriginal symbol bush berries.

Wiley Park Girls High
Wiley sustainable ecogarden

Wiley Park Girls High will enhance an existing vegetable garden into one that is more efficient, productive and sustainable. The major aim of this project is to give students an opportunity to promote cultivation of vegetables and herbs in our garden.

Students will be exposed to gardening techniques through hands-on exploration, and communicating with other staff and students by taking pride in growing their food. This will foster collaboration between diverse cultural backgrounds of our school and community.

The garden will benefit both students from the support unit and mainstream, and will be integrated into other Key Learning Areas such as hospitality to utilise the produce, and to supplement the use of food. Students will have knowledge of the cycle of healthy growing of food, then cooking and composting. This kind of garden will encourage an outdoor learning area for students and link their learning to real life experiences in the future.

The overall aim of this project is to promote knowledge and values in students about sustainable environmental practices, who will then promote and encourage these practices to the wider community.

Wiley Park Public School
Our edible sensory garden

At Wiley Park Public School we are conscious of educating our students to care for the environment, as they are the future of both our local communities, also more broadly those around the world. Building on current programs around keeping the playground and classrooms clean, this project will extend this to now include caring for plants. Many of the students live in units and have no space for gardens, and may never have experienced green space, or have the ability to grow and care for plants. This project, may be the first opportunity to develop these necessary life skills to care for, and maintain garden space.

Woonona High School
Where the environment and a safe place comes together

This project will create a garden to provide a much-needed resource that will cater for the specific needs of autistic students. It will provide a break out space for students to self-regulate their emotional state, and will cater for their learning style.

The project is the beginning of a larger scale sustainability education centre, which will see the future development of indigenous and permaculture gardens. The building of the garden will develop an understanding and awareness of sustainable building practices for our Vocational Educational students, and will help fulfil curriculum requirements.

Students will learn about rainwater harvesting and take part in planting. The wider aim of the project is to raise awareness of sustainability practices in building technologies, land management and food production, for both the Support unit and mainstream classes across the school. Initially this will benefit students of Woonona High School, however the resources will be shareable with our Community of Schools.

Wycliffe Christian School
Wycliffe community garden

Wycliffe has a long history of strong community involvement, families and children who are part of the school enjoy working together and sharing in each others' lives.

This project aims to strengthen our school community and to raise awareness of everyday sustainable life choices. It aims to build capacity and resilience, especially for students with extra needs, as they grow up in our rapidly changing world.

This project involves students, parents and the broader school community joining together in building a sustainable garden, learning organic waste management through composting, worm farming, beekeeping and chicken care, and through garden activities that are embedded within the curriculum, with the aim of encouraging life-long sustainable habits.

Yennora Public School
Bush tucker garden

Students will create a bush tucker garden with a native bee hive for our school community. The school, which lies within a light industrial area, has a diverse native bird population which needs native plants as their food source and shelter.

The majority of students at our school come from a non-English speaking backgrounds, and many arrived in Australia as refugees. Through this project families will learn about the Aboriginal culture of our local area and develop respect and affinity for their new land. It will also become a teaching resource to learn about the sustainability of native plants and highlight the loss of biodiversity due to the clearing of native bushland in the local area.

The garden will include some contemporary Aboriginal sculptures, designed by our Aboriginal students recognising it as a special place in the school environment. This will become a learning and meeting space for students, where they are able to observe, interact with and participate in sustainable practises that they can use in their own home environments.

Page last updated: 06 April 2018