Sustainable Cycles at the Farm

Students will get a chance to feed and pat some of our animals while focusing on the resources we use at the farm. Students will experience the interconnectedness of plants, animals and people at the farm and the importance of not being wasteful.

Sites which may be visited:

  • Sheep
  • Compost
  • Garden
  • Chooks

Learning Intentions:

  • To identify some resources that are used on the farm to keep plants, animals and people healthy
  • To understand that plants, animals and people are interconnected and that we need to create sustainable patterns of living so that we don’t run out of important resources in the future

Victorian Curriculum Links:

Science (Foundation to Level 2)

Earth’s resources are used in a variety of ways (VCSSU047)
 Living things have a variety of external features and live in different places where their basic needs, including food, water and shelter, are met (VCSSU042)

Sustainability Cross-curriculum Priority (Key Concept #1):

Systems – explores the interdependent and dynamic nature of systems that support all life on Earth and our collective wellbeing
 The biosphere is a dynamic system providing conditions that sustain life on Earth.
 All life forms, including human life, are connected through ecosystems on which they depend for their wellbeing and survival.
 Sustainable patterns of living rely on the interdependence of healthy social, economic and ecological systems.

Follow-up Activities

There is much potential to extend on students’ learning back at school as part of an inquiry unit or as a theme across curriculum areas. A Sustainable Cycles at the Farm tour could be used as the ‘Explore’ phase in the 5Es Instructional Model (Bybee, 1997). Visit https://www.primaryconnections.org.au/5es-teaching-and-learning-model to read about the Primary Connections 5Es teaching and learning model.

Follow-up activities could include:

  • Have students design a farm of their own in teams. What will you grow? What resources will you need to run your farm?
  • Start a worm farm at school so you can watch your food scraps decompose
  • Make posters labelled “Plants Need”, “Plants Give”, “Cows Need”, “Cows Give”
  • Looks like, feels like, sounds like ‘Y Chart’ Collingwood Children’s Farm visit brainstorm as a prompt for a writing activity
  • Sprout broad beans or grow something from a seed in the classroom. Observe it grow and discuss what resources it needs
  • Read Welcome to Country by Aunty Joy Murphy (Black Dog Books, 2016) and learn about some of the animals and plants that the Wurundjeri people traditionally used for food and shelter (possum skin cloaks, murnong, eels, emus etc)

Suggested External Resources

Websites and Resources

https://www.gardenorganic.org.uk/schools The Garden Organic website has many resources for schools including activity ideas, games and information about gardening for all ages
https://www.sustainability.vic.gov.au/School/Modules/Curriculum Sustainability Victoria provides a “Curriculum links: Level F-6” document which suggests activities under each curriculum area
https://www.buzzaboutbees.net/ A website with heaps of information all about bees and beekeeping

https://www.countrysideclassroom.org.uk/ The Country Classroom website contains loads of resources for teachers relating to food, farming and the natural environment

Picture books

Barton, Bethany, Give Bees a Chance, Puffin Books, 2019
Carle, Eric, Pancakes, Pancakes!, Aladdin, 2005
Murphy, Joy, Welcome to Country, Black Dog Books, 2016

Videos

Composting for Kids by HighfieldsComposting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dRXNo7Ieky8
Costa’s Guide to Organics for Schools by Planet Ark https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gMfiFSKEtBY
Farming bees. Buzzzz by ABC For the Juniors http://education.abc.net.au/home#!/media/30267/?id=30267

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