When students have the opportunity to know and understand the changing patterns of the year, the seasons, the days and the rhythms of nature, they are able to have a better understanding of their own place in our world – our tūrangawaewae. In fact, reflecting on change helps us all to make sense of experiences, deepen our learning and gain direction for the journey ahead. It launches us into the next round of observing, learning, exploring and taking action.

The Enviroschools initiative gives students the chance to make a positive difference to our local environment and to engage in conversations about global issues too. The world needs environmentalists, activists and urgent protection of our environment. This model fits directly with Education for Sustainability where students learn about the environmental, social, cultural, and economic aspects of sustainability: https://seniorsecondary.tki.org.nz/Social-sciences/Education-for-sustainability

Our Enviroschools Group at CAS stretches across the year groups and works in collaboration with Tasman District Council and our partner CoL schools in Golden Bay: http://www.enviroschools.org.nz/

The Enviroschools kaupapa focuses on creating a healthy, peaceful and sustainable world through facilitating action learning; where inter-generations of people work with and learn from nature. It weaves in Māori perspectives, combining traditional wisdoms with new understandings. Importantly, our kaupapa reminds us to be in connection: to love, care for and respect each other, our planet and ourselves.

Working in conjunction with The Living Wood Fair and Tasman District Council, here’s a short animated film our Enviroschools group made in Term 1 of 2018 on the subject of the Totara Tree. Known to Māori as Rakau Rangatira, a chiefly tree, the Totara can live for over 1000 years. We thought it was worth recognising this magnificent NZ icon.

Collingwood Area School