CONNECT at Girrakool

Connect

Presented by Simply Homeschool at Girrakool National Park in conjuntion with National Parks and Wildlife Service and Homeschool Hive.

This 8-week program encourages students to forge connections with nature, each other and themselves through hands-on learning under the guidance of staff and park rangers.

Explore the bushland, forest, waterfalls and creeks of Girrakool National Park.

Read maps, make scientific observations, study the environment and write in a nature journal. Practice plant, insect and bird identification, go on a fungi hunt and make leaf rubbings. Explore Aboriginal connections and culture, listen to storytelling and learn about the indigenous seasons. Discuss what makes a good friend and how to take care of your mental and physical health.

CONNECT fosters a sense of belonging, inspires resilience and encourages gratitude. It nurtures a love of the natural world, and facilitates collaboration as students write and illustrate a Group Book to be professionally published, and create group artworks to be displayed at a local art gallery. 

 

CONNECT will run again in Term 3 at a different location.

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ConteNt and Curriculum

CONNECT is suitable for ages 5-14 and covers English, Science and Technology, Geography, PD, Health, PE, Creative Arts and Aboriginal Studies across Early Stage 1 (Kindergarten) - Stage 4 (Years 7 and 8). 

Download a list of all of the Outcomes covered by CONNECT here.

See a list of activities included in CONNECT below under "Weekly Outline".

 


Schedule

Wednesdays 27 April - 15 June* 2022

Girrakool National Park, Central Coast, NSW

  • 9:15am Arrive and Sign in
  • 9:30am Connect Activities
  • 10:00am 4 Rotating Group Activities (time for lunch and snacks is included in these activities) 
  • 1:00pm  Activity 5, Reconnect, Respond and Share
  • 2:30pm Finish

*Weeks that are rained out will be made up after 15 June


Registration Fees

 

1st child

2nd child

3rd child

4th child +

Registration includes:

  • All activities
  • Entry to Girrakool National Park
  • Expert ranger guides
  • 1 x published book per family
  • A5 nature journal
  • Materials for activities

NOTE: Children must be from the same immediate family.

Registration fees are per child and include participation in all activities. Children aged 0-4 are free. Adults are not required to pay registration fees but are required to supervise their child/ren at all times for all activities.  

 

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Weekly OUTLINE

CONNECT

ACTIVITY 1

ACTIVITY 2

ACTIVITY 3

ACTIVITY 4

ACTIVITY 5

Mental Health Survey

Belonging

Physical Fitness

Heart Rate Check

Introductory walk and observations

Map Reading and Map skills

Nature Journaling – Trees

Writing Skills – Nouns and Verbs

Science - Observation Skills

Environmental Studies - Colour Cards

Book Box

Free Play

Art – Jack Wunuwun and Rrark Patterns

Reconnect, Respond and Share

CONNECT

ACTIVITY 1

ACTIVITY 2

ACTIVITY 3

ACTIVITY 4

ACTIVITY 5

What makes a good friend?

Plant identification

Bush Tukka

Types of Leaves

Bush Creations –

Design and Technology with natural materials

Nature Journaling – Plant Descriptions

Writing Skills – Adjectives

Science – Fungi Hunt

Environmental Studies

Leaf Rubbings/Bark rubbings

Book Box

Free Play

Art – Jack Wunuwun – leaves and stalks

Reconnect, Respond and Share

CONNECT

ACTIVITY 1

ACTIVITY 2

ACTIVITY 3

ACTIVITY 4

ACTIVITY 5

Developing strengths and skills – one step at a time.

 

Aboriginal Connections

Aboriginal Language, Art and Culture

 

Indigenous Seasons Calendar

Aboriginal Storytelling

 

Group - Journey Maps

Writing Skills – Prepositions

Science – Types of Clouds

Environmental Studies

Hand blow painting

Book Box

Free Play

Art – Jack Wunuwun – Group Artwork #1 background with Rrark patterns

Reconnect, Respond and Share

CONNECT

ACTIVITY 1

ACTIVITY 2

ACTIVITY 3

ACTIVITY 4

ACTIVITY 5

Mistakes Matter – what makes a mistake good?

 

Waterways

Water quality study

 

Insect Identification

Bush Tukka

 

Nature Journaling – Insect and Water  Descriptions

Writing Skills – Adverbs

Science – Leaf Litter

Environmental Studies - Hoop Study

Book Box

Free Play

Art – Jack Wunuwun – Patterned Animals

Reconnect, Respond and Share

 

CONNECT

ACTIVITY 1

ACTIVITY 2

ACTIVITY 3

ACTIVITY 4

ACTIVITY 5

Attitude of Gratitude

 

Bird Identification

Bird Sketching

 

Tracks and Scats

Reptiles and Mammals

 

Nature Journaling – Bird Poetry

Writing Skills – Conjunctions

 

Science – Bird Count

Types of beaks/feet

Environmental Studies - Sneaky Sniffers

Book Box

Free Play

Art – Jack Wunuwun – Detailed bird/animal Sketches

Reconnect, Respond and Share

CONNECT

ACTIVITY 1

ACTIVITY 2

ACTIVITY 3

ACTIVITY 4

ACTIVITY 5

Resilience Skills

 

Soil Types

Geology

 

 

Bush Safety Skills

First Aid

 

Nature Journaling – Senses and Soundmaps

 

 

Science – Ecology and ecosystems

Environmental Studies – Rock Rubbings

– Stone Towers/Stacks

Book Box

Free Play

Art – Jack Wunuwun – Group Artwork #2

A Mural of Faces

Reconnect, Respond and Share

One of the main goals of Connect is to build connections with others and also with nature/place.

This week is kept free of activities for people to meet together, take longer walks, have a picnic/bbq and just spend time outdoors together.

This is deliberately included in Week 7 of the program when connections have grown, but there is still 1 more week to consolidate the group and group learning/interaction. This week is part of the process of handing over the ongoing connection to participants.

CONNECT

ACTIVITY 1

ACTIVITY 2

ACTIVITY 3

ACTIVITY 4

ACTIVITY 5

Belonging

Mental Health Survey

Physical Fitness

Heart Rate Check

Human Impact

Natural Change

Landcare

Bushfires

Indigenous use of Fire

Bush Regeneration

Nature Journaling – Observation of Change

Group Ephemeral Artwork

Book Box

Free Play

Art – Jack Wunuwun – Group Artwork #2

A Mural of Faces - Connections

Reconnect, Respond and Share

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FAQ

In term 2, 2022 CONNECT will run at Girrakool National Park on the Central Coast, NSW. We plan on running this program in other locations at a later date. 

Approximate travel times:

  • Gosford: 15 minutes
  • Wyong: 20 minutes
  • Hornsby: 40 minutes
  • The Hills Distrct: 50 minutes
  • Sydney CBD: 1 hour
  • Northern Beaches: 1 hour
  • Newcastle: 1 hour 15 minutes

 

Each week, please bring:

  • Pencil case with sketching pencils, coloured pencils, writing pens
  • Usual bushwalking supplies (water, hat, sun cream)
  • Packed lunch and snacks
  • Sturdy shoes and rain jacket (gumboots if wet)
  • Basic first aid kit for Week 7 (independent bush walk)
  • Camp chair / picnic blanket (optional)

All other materials will be supplied.

Please leave devices at home or switch off.

  • All activities
  • Entry to Girrakool National Park
  • Expert ranger guides with National Parks and Wildlife Service Rangers
  • Qualified and experienced teachers from Simply Homeschool
  • 1 x published book per family
  • A5 nature journal
  • Materials for activities

During CONNECT, students will be writing and illustrating a Group Book to be professionally published after the program. Each family will receive a copy of the book as part of their registration.

Students will also be creating group artworks and journey maps to be displayed at a local art gallery at the conculusion of the program. 

The program will still run in light rain.

If it does need to be cancelled we will let you know via a text message and a make up class will be scheduled for Wednesday the week after 15th June.

Homeschool Hive is the new face-to-face arm of Simply Homeschool. 

The Homeschool Hive vision is to facilitate community connections and provide opportunities for homeschool families to connect, learn, work, share and thrive.

Our mission is that when homeschool families connect regularly in a physical place to participate in organic and guided activities, we build relationships, a sense of belonging, and we support each other to achieve positive outcomes for our children.

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