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Partnerships in Ocean Literacy

Yet again, we partnered with Blue Cradle to learn about our neighbouring ecosystem to the farm, Whakaruapō/ Lyttelton Harbour. This was a seven-week programme focused on OceanLiteracy. Ocean literacy can be defined as our understanding of our influence on the ocean and of the ocean's influence on us. In partnering with Blue Cradle, they could share knowledge and promote a strong connection with the moana.

Each week we started with a monitoring study of the sea/ beach area. The tamariki were taught how to use scientific monitoring and data collection equipment that is used by scientists all over the world! Each week, the data we collected contributed to a larger data set collected by the University of Otago and Marine Metre Squared. It was incredible how, the monitoring went from teacher-led exploration and study to the tamariki independently, completing their own analysis by week 7, building their skills, knowledge and capabilities for a sustainable future. It was awesome to watch these skills develop.

To add to that, each week, the tamariki explored a different theme. In week two, the tamariki learnt about water density, and what makes saltwater different from freshwater. To prove this, we made boats from what we found and did some experiments. It was fun to see the difference, as we explored some cool experiments. In week three, the tamariki were transformed into zooplankton as they learnt about the food chain in whakaraupō and who the top predators are, as well as how our human influences can drastically influence those. In week three, we were lucky to have Sustainable coastlines with us, as we further explored our human influence on our ecosystem! In week four, we explored the #TeKawaOTangaroa curriculum as we learned about the importance of fishing monitoring and management.

In week five, we were glad to host Sustainable Coastlines as a guest. They presented their #LitterIntelligence citizen science programme to provide insights and inspire action for a litter-free world. In week six, we explored how the birds and animals have made adaptations over time. There was nothing like us pretending we were birds, and getting stuck in the mud! Nothing like a little bit of hilarity in our learnings, as we explored how our foot formation can make such a difference! In week seven, we learnt about our local little blue penguins - kororā, and how to keep safe from human impacts.

Without this partnership, we could not have gotten these rad opportunities to take our tamariki to new understandings of ocean literacy and our world. These opportunities with Bush Farm's unique curriculum in deep nature connection - enhancing wellbeing and belonging - make for a one of a kind opportunity. We believe, that by working together, in creating real-world opportunities we can give our learners a truly optimal learning experience in nature; learners that are connected to themselves, and their environment in a way that empowers them to act as kaitiaki and future problem solvers.

To learn more, please watch our video of this ocean literacy mahi.


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