What do you do when you have hundreds of kids wanting to know why our bushland and canopy aren’t being protected?
What do you do when kids see that trees are coming down in their suburbs and they are concerned our planet is getting hotter and canopy is deceasing in city areas?
You get them together, chat about what they want for the future, meet with stakeholders, make a plan and then start Green Lab – a youth led project focusing on increasing canopy to cool the planet.
This week the City of Bayswater and Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions joined Millennium Kids at Lightning Swamp for the first two day workshop series with one hundred and thirty students from local primary schools.
Students and teachers from Bassendean Primary School, Weld Square Primary School, Hillcrest Primary School and West Morley Primary School explored the bushland site alongside scientists, artists, indigenous custodians and citizen science facilitators looking at the habitat and the pressure of the encroaching built environment. Students looked for birds, checked out tracks and scats and built a bott, which analysed soil.
Local bushcarers talked about the area and how it had changed over time.
“I didn’t know trees could communicate with each other.” Said one of the students. “There is so much we don’t know!”
“We have habitat trees in our school and we need to monitor them to ensure birds have food to eat.” Said another student.
At the end of the two days students pitched their ideas to the Mayor of City of Bayswater, Cr Dan Bull.
Students will work with their schools to develop their own Green Lab initiative and activate their sites at the end of the year to help the community understand the importance of canopy and the need to increase, protect and monitor trees in their local area to reduce the urban heat effect.
Students will be supported through the program with additional workshops and tools as they develop their program concepts.