Camp provides opportunity for learning ‘in the field’
The Year 11 Biology Camp gives boys an opportunity to work ‘in the field’ – just like real biologists. At the end of Term 3, 15 boys travelled to Kerriley Park, in Yelverton, where they spent three days completing an ecological study of the surrounding bushlands.
As part of the Year 11 (Stage 2 Biological Sciences) course fieldwork component, the boys completed a study of the area employing ecological techniques such as soil testing (pedology) as well as classifying plants and comparing two communities using quadrats and transects.
The students, accompanied by their teacher Julie Harris and Head of Biology Sharyn Bana, stayed in small cottages in the forest near Yelverton. Living in groups of four, the boys cooked their own meals, cleaned up after themselves and enjoyed feeding the local farm animals.
Mrs Harris said a highlight of the camp was the ‘nightstalk’ at the Margaret River Ecodiscovery Centre where boys took part in a nocturnal, blindfolded ‘Sense-ational Trail’ walk through the forest. At the centre, which is run by the Department of Environment and Conservation (formerly CALM), the boys heard a talk titled Back from the Brink. “The talk detailed the work of the Western Shield programme whose baiting of foxes and cats has allowed the recovery of native animal populations,” Mrs Harris said.
Mrs Harris said the camp was a great opportunity for the boys to get some fieldwork experience outside the classroom. “We do most of the ecology (biodiversity and populations) work in the lab at school, so it is great to get the boys out ‘in the field’ for our annual camp.”