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Enviroschools Wellington I Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui update - news for Enviroschools across the region.
 
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Ngā mihi nui Enviroschools whānau,
 
'Hoki whakamuri, kia anga whakamua'
Look to the past in order to forge the future.

Celebrating Matariki this term, as well as transitioning from one funding year to the next we have indeed been reflecting on our past as well as planning for our future.  

We sadly farewell our Regional Co-ordinator (RC) Dana Carter to spend more time with her family. Read more below about Dana's future plans and her reflection on her time as RC. Gill Stewart will be filling the RC role until a new one is appointed. Gill has been the assistant Regional Co-ordinator and was facilitating schools in the Wairarapa. 

We are in a world where science is essential to us understanding and solving many of our complex issues. Citizen science is a way of engaging our students and the community to get involved and give us ways of learning that are engaging and fun. Data collecting means we are out experiencing the world - making connections in the natural environment and in our social world too.  
 
Don't forget that science include the social and historic, the cultural and physical realms. "Western" science has in the past been dominant in our thinking. It is heartening to see a return to a more balanced focus - an including focus rather than excluding.
 
In this newsletter we are celebrating our students who have been out collecting such data in community bioblitzes. We want to celebrate schools like Koraunui who are incorporating all aspects of science into their learning and action. 
 
Koraunui School last week received a special taonga acknowledging the roles they are playing around leadership and kaitiakitanga in our network. Please see below to read their story and find some other opportunities you and your class can take up in Term 3 to be part of citizen science in NZ - giving back to our natural environment.

Wishing your all a restful and replenishing term break.
Ngā mihi mahana,
The Enviroschools Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui team 

 

Exploring Enviroschools Workshop

An introduction to Education for Sustainability and the Enviroschools Kaupapa for schools, teachers, principles or BOT representatives new to the Enviroschools programme.

Friday 7 September at The Dowse Lower Hutt
Download a flyer here or register here

Your Sustainable School

Sustainability Trust, in partnership with Enviroschools, is rolling out the new Your Sustainable School programme, funded by the Ministry for the Environment and launched recently by Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage.

Mt Cook Enviroschool students attended the launch at the Sustainability Trust to represent the children of the Wellington region who will have the opportunity to participate in and benefit from this new programme.

Your Sustainable School focuses on how to reduce the waste produced in primary and intermediate schools and improve school recycling. It will begin in schools around the region next term.

There are still opportunities for participation in Term 3 and 4 2019.

Snaphot 2017

We are excited to share this Snapshot of the Enviroschools and Te Aho Tü Roa programmes in the Wellington region. It highlights the mahi happening in early childhood centres, schools and communities involved in our programmes. Download a copy here or email Claire if you would like a hard copy sent out to you.

Hoki Mai Pēke

This Plastic Free July we acknowledge Moriah Kindergarten and their commitment to promoting re-usable resources and waste free practices. This is a great example of Sustainable Communities & Empowered students - read more here.
 

Kawaiwai Bioblitz

Out into the sunshine went students from Kuranui College, Featherston School and Pirinoa School, to take part in a BioBlitz, organised by Sustainable Wairarapa at Kaiwaiwai Farm’s wetland near Featherston.

As well as removing nitrates, the specially-constructed wetland has become home to a large number of plants and creatures.

Over four hours, the students were the scientists collecting and recording all living species in the wetland. Having experts as part of the BioBlitz, meant that the students could also get help identifying what they discovered and find out about them.

Students discovered close to 140 species of plants, invertebrates, fungi and fish in the wetland area that used to be pasture and farm drains. The students repeated the discovery process in the paddock next to the wetland where only 60 species were found.

Great effort by all involved!

Students from Pirinoa school are scientists for the day gathering samples for the BioBlitz at Kaiwaiwai wetland, Featherston.

Photo credit: Andrew Stewart

Porirua Students Present

Three Porirua Enviroschools; Corinna, Discovery and Papakowhai, Schools supported students to make submissions to the Porirua City Council Long Term Plan. The students also took the opportunity to present and speak to their submissions at the oral hearings.

They explored & discussed issues including a Recycling Subsidy for schools and Storm Drain Litter issues impacting on the local waterways.

"The submission was hard work but we got through it. It was a great experience It was heaps of fun working with some councillors along the way. I loved every single bit of it. I just want to do it again and again.  Ishani

We put a lot of effort into the submission. I now know what it is like for next time. I learnt that you actually have to make free time to do the work . I enjoyed the speaking to the councilors part.  Emily

Kuranui College GreenJam

Students from Kuranui College's Enviro Club successfully organised a GreenJam for local primary schools at the end of Term 2.  They hosted 35 students from six primary schools and three Kāpiti College students for a day of learning about and taking action for the environment.  

Kuranui College became an Enviroschool in 2017 with a goal of supporting work already being done in Enviroschools throughout the primary schools in South Wairarapa.  Read more about their succesful GreenJam here

Kaitiaki

Congratulations to Koraunui School who have been selected to be the next Kaitiaki of our regional Kaitiakitanga Taonga - Māui Dolphin Artwork.  Students from Kāpiti College visited Koraunui School last week to present this taonga at a special assembly.

Read here about the amazing mahi happening at Koraunui school and why their kaitiakitanga is being acknowledged by Enviroschools Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui.

Each year at the time of Matariki, this taonga will be passed on to a new school or ECE.  Our Māui Dolphin Kaitiaki schools:

  • Demonstrate Kaitiakitanga - taking action in a meaningful context.

  • Show evidence of a number of Enviroschools Guiding Principles in action

  • Participate in and contribute to the Enviroschools network by sharing their mahi and journey and by being a strong role model for others

Te Puna Reo o Ngā Kākano

Ngā mihi maioha ki te whānau o Te Puna Reo o Ngā Kākano kua whakapūmauhara  i te taumata Hiriwa. Acknowledgements to Te Puna Reo o Ngā Kākano who have recently reflected at the Silver stage of their Enviroschools journey.

"Achieving Silver for us is a sign of the waka that we are all now on, rather than a few people driving it.

It means we have become more rooted in the whenua we are on, and connected to our takiwā.

The past, present and future are all on this waka with us and it is clearer where we are going.”
- Tumuaki, Erin Robertson

Imagine Childcare, Trentham Kindergarten, Matariki Kindergarten and Sun Valley Kindergarten all celebrated becoming Bronze Enviroschools this term. All four  joined new early childhood clusters in Lower and Upper Hutt in late 2016.

It has been great to celebrate how each centre is authentically implementing their sustainability journey. The clusters have been spaces for collaborative learning - and this learning continues through the holistic reflection process. Centres send team members to each others’ reflections to add their fresh eyes to the process - and bring back insights for their own centres.  

We look forward to our next reflection at Smiley Faces Educare.

Paparārangi Kindergarten

Congratulations also to Paparārangi Kindergarten whānau who are the first of the newest cohort of ECE Enviroschools in Wellington City to reflect at the Bronze stage of their Enviroschools journey.

"It was a very special experience being able to come together as a community to welcome the Reflection Team to guide us in the process of our Bronze Reflection.  For our tamariki, whanau and kaiako it was a chance to celebrate our ongoing Enviroschools journey and see how integrated into our practice and programme the kaupapa of the Guiding Principles is and its exciting to have some new goals to work towards.  The day was a tangible recognition of how we are all working together to create a sustainable future for our tamariki and Papatūānuku.”

What were your responsibilities as Enviroschools Regional Coordinator?
Oversight of the Enviroschools programme in Te Upoko o Te Ika a Māui. This included looking after an amazing team of smart, courageous wāhine, managing the team’s budget and contracts, ensuring positive relationships with funding agencies and a positive profile of the programme in the region.

What did you enjoy the most about being part of Enviroschools?
The beautiful kaupapa which is about creating a healthy, sustainable, peaceful world. I love the way aspects of it form layers of understanding over time and that there is always new learning.

What's the most important lesson you've learned in the last year?
Whānau is everything - my children are my heart and I want to pour all my love into them and I need the time and head space to do that.

Also to live your life strongly guided by your values including to intentionally build in one or two things every week that reflect your values.

What characteristic do you most admire in others?
Integrity
What sustainability issues / aspects are you personally passionate about?
Sustainable, active travel
Protecting/preserving NZ’s rich, unique biodiversity, including our amazingly beautiful, pristine places
the need to readjust our consumer based, individualistic society and economy to one that is more circular and less competitive.
Creating greater equity across society

Name one important quality for a successful Enviroschool?   
Perseverence - through good times and bad, sickness and health, for richer or poorer!

How do you recharge?
Yoga, running, reading a book, coffee with friends, going for a walk in the forest.
What movie or novel character do you most identify with?

When are you the happiest?
On a tramp in the bush exploring somewhere I haven’t been before on a hot, sunny day, having a swim in a river and a yummy dinner in a hut!!

What super power would you like to have?
A magic finger that meant whenever I touched a river, its water quality would become pristine and all life and mauri would be restored.

Garden Bird Survey

30 June - 8 July

Our manu/birds  are important indicators of the health of New Zealand’s environment. The NZ Garden Bird Survey is a great citizen science project to to help us discover and learn more about NZ garden birds.  Read here about how schools can take part - it can be just one hour for on one day this weekand tap into heaps of awesome resources - including awesome bird masks. 

Just one hour on one day this week can help students identify and learn about key native, endemic and introduced birds, gather and interpret data and begin to understand how birds are part of a wider ecosystem.  They can also earn a Toyota Kiwi Guardian 'Toa Manu Medal' for taking part.

The DOC 'Experiencing Birds in Your Green Space' resource has been developed in collaboration with Landcare Research, and promotes the NZ Garden Bird Survey.

Great practice for New Zealand's largest Citizen Science project coming up in September - The Great Kererū Count.

Join over two million people world-wide stepping up in Plastic Free July in 2018.  It's not too late to register for the Plastic Free July challenge if you haven't already.

​​More than 6 out of 10 of us are already refusing plastic shopping bags, avoiding pre-packed fruit and veg, picking up other people's litter and avoiding buying bottled water. 

Choose to be part of the solution: check out this page of resources for tips on how to refuse single use plastic in each area of your life. 

We’re already seeing the impacts of climate change and it’s not just an environmental issue – there are social and economic implications too. You have a part to play in deciding how New Zealand responds to climate change. The Zero Carbon Bill will set the long term commitment to transition us to a low-emission, climate resilient economy.Read the discussion document Our Climate Your Say.

Consultation on the Bill runs until 5pm 19 July.

Conservation Week

15 - 23 September

Conservation Week is run by DOC each year to encourage people to get involved in nature and help to take care of it. Visit their website here to learn about local events, connect with resources and find out about this year’s theme. 

Native Tree Professional Development

Are you getting involved in planting native trees and want some resources to support you. Check out this PD based on resources from Dept of Conservation and the Science Learning Hub. It has the science and the ideas for taking action in a variety of ways. 

Also click here for a padlet on all things native trees - how to’s, information sources, teaching resources, and  including funding sources for projects. https://padlet.com/Enviropadlets/NativeTrees

Term 3 LEARNZ Virtual Field Trips

These virtual field trips give you access to online video and audio feeds, activities and much more. You can also access previous field trips, covering a wide range of sustainability topics

Check out these topics for Term 3!

Map my waahi - my place, my story,

Share the Road 2018 - design thinking and a safer transport system for everyone,

Ecological Restoration - bringing back native plants and animals

Experiencing Marine Reserves 

Expressions of interest for Term 4

Mountains to Sea Wellington will be kicking off term 4 with 'Experiencing Marine Reserves',  an exciting term long inquiry programme that engages students with their local marine environment through fins and snorkelling experiences.  With plenty of opportunities to learn about marine biodiversity and protection, students will feel inspired to take action for their environment.

The programme consists of classroom sessions, pool skills training and two snorkelling field trips to compare inside and outside of a marine reserve.  One-off snorkels experiences are also available.  Contact zoe.studd@mtsw.org.nz if you are interested in getting your class involved.

Make the link

Taputeranga Marine Reserve Human Chain

Join Mountains to Sea for an exciting, and slightly mad celebration of Taputeranga Marine Reserve and their 10th anniversary! On the 7th of December at 12.30pm, a bunch of passionate marine advocates, businesses, schools, and community will be aiming to pull off an unbroken human chain around the boundaries of the landward edge of the Taputeranga Marine Reserve. That’s over 5km of human hand holding. 

Register your school's interest here.
Keep an eye out next term for Keep New Zealand Beautiful's new Kiki Kiwi Litter Less Programme,’ which aims to educate children about the importance of putting their litter in the bin.  It is split in to three themes, six inquiry questions and delivered over 12 lessons.
Submissions are now open until 9 August for the Zayed Sustainability Prize.  This international US$100,000 prize will be given to global high schools from six geographic regions that can demonstrate impact, innovation and inspiration to enable inclusive and equitable access to quality education. 
 
Downlad the 2018 Sustainability Calendar here for links to plan lessons and activities around Education for Sustainability dates and events.
Thank youto the following partners for their ongoing support of the
Enviroschools Programme in Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui / The Wellington Region.
                                                

 

 

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