Cleanwater Carnivale - five unique games for the community
Grant number: 3050
Grant funding: $66,000
Local government area/s: Bankstown City Council
Location/s: Developed in Bankstown but available statewide
Project partners: Bankstown City Council
Bankstown City Council's education program relies heavily on school visits and participation in community festivals and events. The council wanted to support its approach with other strategies that would encourage people to gain a deeper understanding of environmental issues and to develop skills to act in an environmentally responsible way.
The project sought to:
- engage participants in hands-on activities that were fun and provided a valuable learning experience
- improve participants' knowledge and understanding of stormwater pollution and other related environmental issues
- improve participants' skills in protecting their waterways and environments.
The Cleanwater Carnivale included five interactive group activity games. These are designed to increase knowledge of stormwater issues and reinforce that everyone is responsible for reducing the amount of rubbish (and other pollutants) being carried into local waterways.
The games encourage ecologically sustainable attitudes and behaviours, and raise awareness of the interconnectedness of different environments. Most of the games are life-size, not the size of board games, so the players move themselves rather than counters.
Methodology and tools
The underlying belief of this project was that education must be engaging, relevant and fun, and it must appeal to different learning styles and stages.
At the beginning of the project a game design competition was held for local school students. This competition brought the project to the attention of schools and encouraged involvement and commitment from teachers and students.
Formal questionnaires and discussion groups were conducted with the general community and student groups to trial and modify the games.
Participants completed formal questionnaires and evaluations once the project had finished, to ascertain the value of the games in improving their knowledge and understanding of stormwater pollution and other related environmental issues.
The following games for children and young people were produced:
- Stormwater wheel - players take turns to spin a wheel. Coloured spokes relate to different questions. Correct answers win tokens. The player with the most tokens wins.
- Stormwater drain - players roll a large dice and advance along a series of markers on the ground. When they land on a coloured marker, they are asked a question and either jump forwards or backwards depending on a right or wrong answer. The first person to finish wins.
- Stormwater jigsaw - players assemble a large jigsaw featuring a colourful scene. They are given story cards to read and encouraged to discuss the various stormwater-related activities depicted in the scene – some positive, some negative.
- Circle of water - players move to music around a large circle of markers. When the music stops, those on a coloured marker are asked a stormwater question. Correct answers win a token. The player with the most tokens wins.
- Bankstown stormwater board game - an A2-sized board game inspired by snakes and ladders featuring a map of Bankstown local government area. Students roll a dice and move counters around the board, landing on various stormwater- and pollution-related experiences. The first one to finish is an 'eco-hero'.
Each game is supported by a user manual containing instructions, lesson plans, teaching notes and worksheets.
The project was supported by promotional brochures, water bottles and show bags.
- Five interactive games for children and young people.
- 356 students participated in the games, coming away with positive stormwater pollution messages.
- Participation in the games had a significant immediate impact on the knowledge and sense of empowerment of 10–12-year-old students.
- Participants judged the games, through completion of evaluation forms, to be fun and engaging in their own right.
The games formats are available from Bankstown City Council for duplication by other councils.
The most effective form of education comes from an enthusiastic and imaginative facilitator, who can enrich the learner's experiences.
Project resources and further information
Bankstown City Council
Stage 3 grant details
Page last updated: 26 February 2011