Secondary Excursions

All programs and activities support the DoE Environmental Education Policy and outcomes contained within the NSW BOSTES syllabuses.

Our programs are designed in consultation with you. They can be used to support your existing curriculum units including. Examples of programs are provided below.

Please check the Booking Calendar for available dates.

To make a booking complete the Program Booking Form on the Booking Calendar page.  Please refer to the FAQ page before you attempt to make a booking.

Field of Mars EEC now accepts bookings from Non-Government schools for Stage 6 programs. Bookings are limited to 10 Nov-Goverment Schools per term. 

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Stage 6 Biology

2018 Yr 11 Biology fieldwork
(In development)

A day of fieldwork that covers content from Modules 3 and 4 from the new NESA syllabus including:

– Case studies of two unique animals, their evolution, adaptations and population changes due to human impacts
– Biotic / Abiotic comparison of two sites to provide habitat assessment for the above
– Soil, Ground cover and leaf litter coverage analysis
– Fauna survey methods and hands-on Invertebrate survey
– Analysis of Human impacts, their management and future
– Adaptations and evolution of Sclerophyll plants

The excursion activities have a strong focus on the new syllabus skills for working scientifically.

Depth studies

Teachers can confidently book this excursion to either:
– Cover the core content from Modules 3 and 4 and then inspire and inform a subsequent depth study or
– Reinforce their own classwork on Modules 3 and 4 and directly inform and provide the data for their depth study.

Pre excursion and depth study support will provided through resources available on this website.

FAQ for teachers

Programming information for teachers

Draft worksheet 6/11/17

Ask about our stop-motion animation incursion option which involves students creating an attractive (and very assessable) communication product for their depth study.

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student
(GST free, minimum charge $600)

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Geography

Environmental Change and Management
Stage 5

An investigative study into the riverine/ estuarine environments of the Lane Cove River.

Students investigate:

– the biophysical processes essential to the functioning of the estuarine environment

– the causes, extent and consequences of the the environmental change

– the management of the environmental change

This is a fieldwork investigation into environmental change and management of the riverine/ estuarine environments at Blackman Park located on the middle section of the Lane Cove River estuary.

Mangrove communities usually thrive along the banks of the Lane Cove River estuary. However, a small section of mangroves found below Blackman Park has died. What is the cause of the mangrove forest dead zone? To find the answer, students need to investigate the processes required for the normal functioning of the mangrove environment, examine the causes, extent and consequences of the mangrove deaths and evaluate the effectiveness of the current management found at the study site.

Students will participate in a range of fieldwork activities including field sketching, using compasses, measuring abiotic factors, crab abundance surveys and conducting interviews. They will also read and interpret satellite images, maps, historical photographs and other graphic representations. It is recommended that students bring a mobile device to take photographs.

Teachers will be provided with teacher notes and the student stimulus booklet at the completion of the fieldwork.

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student (GST free, minimum charge $600)

Download Program Environmental Change and Management

Woodland contains many species of ground cover plants, shrubs and trees.  These layers of plants provide habitats to all the ecosystem inhabitants.

Earth and Environmental Studies

2018 Module 4: Human impacts
(in development)

Syllabus Inquiry question: How do introduced species affect the Australian environment and ecosystems?

Students outline the biotic and abiotic effects of introduced species, and conduct an investigation into a local introduced species, including:

reason for introducing the species
biotic and abiotic effects of the species
area affected by the species
human impacts that favour the introduced species
control or mitigation methods
economic impact of the species
different views about the value of and/or harm caused by the introduced species, including the views of ATSI Peoples
ways in which human activity can upset the balance of ecosystems and favour introduced species
ways in which introduced species contribute to the decline or extinction of native Australian species

Depth studies

Teachers can confidently book this excursion to either:
– Cover the core content from Module 4 and then inspire and inform a subsequent depth study or
– Reinforce their own classwork on Module 4 and directly inform and provide the data for their depth study.

Pre excursion and depth study support will provided through resources available on this website.

FAQ for teachers

Ask about our stop-motion animation incursion option which involves students creating an attractive (and very assessable) communication product for their depth study.

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student
(GST free, minimum charge $600)

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Science

Plant Systems
Stage 4 and 5

What grows where and why?

This excursion focusses on the Living world strand of the syllabus, specifically content to do with plant structures and ecosystems.

In the field students get hands-on with a variety of methods and equipment to measure the abiotic and biotic factors of two study sites. They record their data, construct a detailed profile diagram and explain the differences in their results observed between the two sites. Results are then related to the effects of different landforms, climate, bushfire, drought and nearby human impacts.

Students are also engaged in a creative digital communication task which sees them developing an engaging digital text or video that details the structure, adaptations and habitat value of a native plants growing at Field of Mars Reserve. These multimodal digital texts and videos will be saved to a dropbox folder and be available for viewing back at school.

The Field of Mars EEC site has a maximum capacity of 100 students. Schools wishing to bring more than 100 students need to get in touch well in advance to have a chance of booking a second excursion site on the same day.

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student (GST free, minimum charge $600)

Download Program Plant Systems

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Maths

Natural numbers
Stages 4 & 5

The eucalyptus woodlands and mangrove wetlands of the Buffalo Creek area offer a great venue for applied hands-on outdoor mathematics. The excursion program incorporates practical maths activities such as geometry, number plane co-ordinates, trigonometry, area and volume, basic formulae, mapping, bearings and statistics. Each fieldwork activity has been set up as a simulation of the work performed by park rangers and other natural resource managers. Students use a variety of physical and digital tools and methods to work towards solutions.

After the data has been collected and practical solutions calculated students record a series of videos to their iPad where they make sense of the setting, scenario, methods, tools and outcomes. These videos are shared with the school so teachers (and students) can critique their own process skills in the working mathematically strand.

Field of Mars can combine some of these activities into a rich assessment task that works at the appropriate level for your students. For best results we will need to see your school’s programs.

Natural Numbers Worksheet

Download Program Natural Numbers

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

2018 Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student (GST free, minimum charge $600)

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Other programs available by request

Ecosystems at Risk
HSC Geography

A case study focussing on the functioning, management and protection of the Turpentine-Ironbark Margin Forest at Field of Mars Reserve.

Download Program Ecosystems at Risk

Investigating Science
New Stage 6 Science syllabus

Please contact us to discuss your depth study needs

Maintaining a Balance
HSC Biology (2018 only)

A half day excursion (best combined with other fieldwork) that covers the challenge of enantiostatsis in the mangrove ecosystem.

Science life skills
New Stage 6 Science syllabus

Fieldwork can focus on: Diversity and ecosystems, introduced species or support a depth study Please contact us to discuss your excursion needs

Marine and Aquaculture Studies

Stage 4-5 Technological and Applied Studies

Hands-on activities relating to marine and estuarine habitats, adaptations, human impacts, food webs, tide cycles. All in the context of a the duties of a national park ranger or marine park manager.

Grime Scene Investigation
Stage 4 Science

This Year 8 Science
 program involves student-directed investigations into the local environment and relevant environmental management issues set on the foreshore of Sydney Harbour.

2017- 2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student (GST free, minimum charge $600)

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Earth and Environmental Science

Introduced Species and the Australian Environment
2018 HSC Course only – Option 9.5

Out in the field Stage 6
 Students will examine and explain how introduced species have altered the biotic and abiotic characteristics of the Strangers Creek bank vegetation.

Students perform a first hand investigation of the non-indigenous species of plants and animals of the Field of Mars Reserve. They collect primary and secondary information that allows them to account for the presence and distribution of several introduced species. This investigation is then extended into an analysis of the impacts of, and control strategies for, these species, for example, the Modified Bradley Method of bush regeneration, fox baiting and stormwater control.
The Strangers Creek Stormwater Rehabilitation Plan is visited as a part of a management case study.

This excursion can be adapted to fit your assessment needs.

Download Program Earth and Environmental Science – Introduced Species and the Australian Environment

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student (GST free, minimum charge $600)

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Earth and Environmental Science

The Local Environment
2018 HSC Course only.

This Stage 6 Science
 program involves student-directed investigations into the local environment and relevant environmental management issues.

During the day the students rotate through four fieldwork activities and one interview session that will furnish them with qualitative observations, quantitative data, historical information and expert knowledge/insight about the state of Field of Mars flora and fauna reserve.

Investigations include human impacts, terrestrial ecology, water quality testing and aquatic ecology around Field of Mars Reserve

As part of their investigation students also identify data, gather, process and analyse first-hand information (biotic and abiotic factors) and use available evidence to assess current human impact on the areas and relate this to the vegetative distribution. Archival aerial photography is used to infer changes in vegetation cover, plant and animal diversity and abundance, as well as water flow and quality in the study area over the last fifty years.

The fieldwork also includes a study of two local species (flora and fauna) that relates their distribution to specific habitat requirements focussing in particular on how the geology of the area has informed this.

This excursion can be adapted to fit your assessment needs.

Download Program Earth and Environmental Science – The Local Environment

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student (GST free, minimum charge $600)

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Geography

Biophysical Interactions
Stage 6

Students work collaboratively to collect data from primary sources in several locations in the Field of Mars Reserve.

In this program students will examine the key biophysical processes and interactions involved in a forest ecosystem. They take measurements relating to the atmosphere and lithosphere, state vegetation structure, record plant variety and distribution along a transect through a fire affected and fire excluded area, observe animal evidence within a quadrat and consider issues posed by feral species.

A site survey and water quality analysis is conducted with a study of the health of a waterway, assessing current and potential impacts, problems and management responses. Students use geographic skills to interpret a topographic map. They identify land uses and impacts using aerial photographs, maps and field observations.

2018 DOE School Cost: $20

Non Gov School Cost: $30 per student (GST free, minimum charge $600)

Download Program Biophysical Interactions