Birds in Schools continues to build momentum in Melbourne. Nine schools, and approximately 460 students, are now participating in the program, which is a joint effort by teachers and students from participating schools, BirdLife staff and volunteers, and local councils. The Birds in Schools program is designed to teach students to identify and survey birds, investigate their habitat requirements, and ultimately, take action to make their school more bird-friendly. The students and teachers involved have been engaged and excited, and are becoming very keen bird-watchers! Our BirdLife volunteers, Bill, Sally, Jacinta, Cody and Melissa have been invaluable on school visits with their birding expertise and enthusiasm.
Action days have now been held at two schools to make the school grounds more bird-friendly. Teachers and students at Spotswood Primary School and Coburg Primary School have put in an enormous effort to learn about birds and their habitats, and decided to have planting days to increase native vegetation to support bird populations. A huge thank you must go to Andrew from Hobsons Bay City Council and Vince from Moreland City Council, who have supported these school plantings through providing local native plants, tree guards and stakes, tools and their expert knowledge and assistance on the days. Thank you also to wonderful BirdLife volunteer, Jacinta, who assisted with the Coburg PS action day
Many schools are integrating Birds in Schools into other areas of the curriculum and the results are impressive! After learning about the lack of suitable habitat in urban areas, students from grades 5 and 6 from Coburg Primary School and Cornish College have been getting creative with their new knowledge.
Joshua from Coburg Primary School has written a beautiful and educational poem about the importance of native shrubs for our birdlife.
The Spikey Bush – By Joshua
Prickly and harsh but plentiful with flowers,
A sea of pink and green.
Sharp but uncontested for our soaring friends of wings.
Looks can be deceiving,
From nature to raw stone.
Stop and take a look,
For this is our home.
Dion from Cornish College has recorded the class’s observations of a big old eucalyptus tree at their school in a detailed illustration showing Red-rumped Parrots using tree hollows.
Lily from Cornish College has this to say about their participation in Birds in Schools so far:
Students from Coburg Primary School have been able to investigate birds that interest them. Evie researched and illustrated this Orange Bellied Parrot.
Schools all around Australia can participate independently in the Pardalote Package, the first two modules of the program any time by registering at www.birdsinbackyards.net/Birds-Schoolsor contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
We welcome new schools and volunteers for the program. If you are interested in volunteering for Birds in Schools, or if you are a teacher who is interested in participating in the program, please get in touch with Alex by email at: email@example.com