learning in a living classroom
Seeing is believing. Its an old adage and one that we believe in. Papa Taiao Earthcare immerses students in their environment. we enable students to see and monitor the state of their environment, show them how it could be and help them learn skills of sustainability and restoration.
“Trades Academies aim to get young New Zealanders engaged in education and equip tomorrow’s workforce with relevant skills by linking with wider industry training system.”
The Earthcare Academies are secondary-tertiary partnerships between Papa Taiao and the school.
The academies are staffed according to the school's and student's needs. Papa Taiao staff are on-site in the school (or where the course is being delivered) for one day a week delivering the skills training. Papa Taiao staff collaborate with the school around numeracy and literacy to enable students to achieve NCEA.
Our learning programmes adopt the enterprise inquiry process and integrate curricula with the goal of producing action competent and enterprising learners who embrace complexity and take a systems approach to their actions and behaviours.
Earthcare Academy courses involve a hybrid of industry-based Earthcare skills like horticulture, aquaculture, pest control and agriculture. These vocational skills courses are combined with the University Entrance Achievement Standards of EfS and E4E. Skills and theory are put in to practice while completing an ecological restoration Action.
Papa Taiao facilitators work with the school to identify a local environmental issue that students and teachers can plan their course from. The make up of the programme can be selected from Te Papa Taiao Earthcare Framework and Te Papa Taiao Courses.
Earthcare Academies are designed to enable students to achieve NCEA Level 2 and NCEA Level 3.
In the past 18 months Papa Taiao Earthcare has delivered short courses to more than 700 students Nationwide at Level 2 and Level 3. On average each student lifted their NCEA scores by 18 credits.
The short courses comprise a one or two day workshop where students learn core skills in an Earth care related topic. Then, with the support of teachers, Gateway coordinators and members of the community students practice their skills in the workplace or in the outdoors. Students log their experience and return a learning journal. Papa Taiao assessors either return to the school or complete the assessments based on information recorded by students in their verified logbooks.
Short courses have been very popular for students interested in Sustainability, Ecological Restoration, Conservation, Pest Control, Horticulture, and Agriculture.
A recent innovation is to work with junior students to introduce them to the ideas of sustainability.
Students participate in exploring the environment and have a lot of fun.
Papa Taiao has been operating since mid-2015. In that time many schools have participated in Te Papa Taiao Earthcare programmes across New Zealand. The highly contextualised, relevant courses have been very effective at lifting engagement. All students involved have lifted their level of success in NCEA at level 2 and level 3. Many of these students would, without Te Papa Taiao courses, have struggled to gain NCEA have reached the criteria as a direct result of their participation.
Papa Taiao is in its infancy. Even at these early days there has been a noticeably higher school attendance on the days Te Papa Taiao courses have been delivered. By the end of the year we are confident achievement will have been raised for all students involved in our courses.
Anecdotally, the courses have been very effective with all student cohorts. We are recording information on who benefits most from the courses. The wānanga styled courses have proven very effective for Māori and Pacific Island students.
Bellow is a selection of schools and ways Papa Taiao Earthcare has worked for them.
Huntly College offers the Whenua Restoration Project Possum and Project Predator in the short course or wanānga form. Students from the College's Services Academy learn pest control skills over a three days. The Services Academy instructor takes students trapping for a minimum of ten times in both possum and predator courses. Students gain outdoor and pest control skills then engage in a community based ecological restoration Action. Several students have been turned on to conservation as a potential career and they have earned a Controlled Substances Licence (the industry qualification for handling toxins).
Students set up and maintain a predator trap line locally.
Wānanga and Short course assessment is based on:
- skill acquisition in a skills workshop,
- achievement of an open-book theory assessment, and
- a verified learning journal
West Coast of the South Island
Students from South Westland Area School, Westland High School and John Paul II school attend a short course where they learn pest control skills. Across the three schools students have set up trap lines targeting the protection of Kotuku White Heron, Whio Blue Duck and Korora Little Blue Penguin.
TE KURA KAUPAPA MĀORI O KAIKOHE
ONE DAY A WEEK LONG COURSE and wānanga
Rangatahi at the kura have participated in one wānanga or short course for each of the subject areas they are participating in. They are completing Wai- and Whenua- Restoration courses; Wai Nurseries, Wai Entrerprise, Wai Fencing One, Project Possum and Project Predator. Through the year a staff member from Papa Taiao Earthcare spends one day a week on site at the kura. Te Papa Taiao kaiako or teacher focuses on delivery of the EfS and Enterprise standards. The kura has a timetable structure that enables students to work independently on their work as they need to. Te Papa Taiao staff support the students in EfS, Enterprise and Science as needed.
TE PŪMANAWA O TE WAIRUA
ONE DAY A WEEK LONG COURSE
Te Pūmanawa o te Wairua has had three Papa Taiao Earthcare staff visit the kura for one day a week for the whole year.
Whenua- and Wai- Restoration is offered to Year 11, 12 and 13 students (see the timetable structure below).
Education for Sustainability and Education for Enterprise make up the core of the programme. Students plan an Action and develop a sustainable business from the skills they learn from the Whenua- or Wai- Restoration programmes. Examples of small businesses include selling possum fur and selling shrubs.
Education for Sustainability, E4E and Nurseries runs all year. Predator and Possum are offered in the first half of the year and Wai Fencing One and Two are offered in the second half.
Kaitaia Earthcare academy in moana-restoration
For the second half of 2015 Kaitaia College will be partnering with Papa Taiao Earthcare to deliver an Earthcare Academy in Moana Restoration.
Students will participate in normal timetabled classes for Biology and Education for Sustainability and spend one day a week focussing on growing paua for a reseeding project. Students will learn Marine Ecology concepts and Aquaculture skills for restoration and enterprise.
Papa Taiao currently supplies one staff member a week with plans to increase that to two after the pilot.
BROADWOOD AREA SCHOOL
EARTHCARE ACADEMY IN WHENUA- AND WAI- RESTORATION
In collaboration with Te Taitokerau Trades Academy, Papa Taiao Earthcare started an Earthcare Academy pilot mid-way through 2015 at Broadwood Area School. The focus is on learning the skills of Whenua- and Wai- Restoration in an area where Iwi are involved in Treaty-Settlement environmental restoration.
The school is close to Te Warawara Forest, whereTe Rarawa as kaitiaki are planning an extensive ecological restoration programme.
As part of the forest restoration Te Warawara is about to have extensive pest control work carried out and there is opportunity for students to gain experience and employment on their maunga and whenua. Te Papa Taiao staff are supporting students learn the process of applying for contracts targeting predator control. Instructors will support students understand the demands and expectations of pest management on a large scale.
Education for Sustainability and Education for Enterprise will both be offered with an aim to lifting student's literacy credit for NCEA.
The students are trapping possums to harvest fur, building a nursery space to grow threatened and riparian plants. And they are involved in fencing off local waterways.
Papa Taiao Earthcare supplies three staff members one day a week. There is flexibility within the programme for students and kaiako teachers to spend all day on student-led Action.