Students from Mother of Good Counsel Primary School, North Cairns (MoGC) rolled up their sleeves to make the school grounds greener on National Tree Day.
National Tree Day
Students from the MoGC Environment Committee planted 14 new native trees to make the school grounds greener.
“Our school is very lucky to have such wonderful huge green trees lining our school oval and playground. These trees are a great space to sit, watch the traffic go by, meditate and play under,” MoGC student Lachlan said.
“During the storm earlier this year, one of our large trees was uprooted, damaging the fence in the process. We have yet to have something replanted in its place, but are delighted at the thought of being able to do this on National Tree Day.”
With the support of local companies Russgo’s Wholesale Plants and Cairns Hardware, Environment Committee Leader and MoGC teacher Amy Chapman is hoping to establish more green spaces and tree canopy for the MoGC students to enjoy.
“Our students are hoping their efforts and collaboration in planting will enable their friends and the future generations of MoGC more green spaces to enjoy, whilst learning key important messages about our environment,” Amy said.
“It’s teaching the kids the notion of how to care for the environment and live among trees and nature.”
Fellow MoGC student Oscar said the group hoped to be able to return to the school in a few years and see the trees they planted.
“It just shows that we as children can do something that can help change the world, and at the very least the school,” he said.
In the lead up to the national event on July 26, the whole school engaged in curriculum lessons based around trees, the local area, nature, biodiversity and giving back to the local environment. The Year 3 students even donated their worm castings from their worm farm to help the new trees grow.
Benefits of Going Green
In addition to providing a leafy canopy for students to seek shelter, a research report from Planet Ark has listed the many benefits of trees in urban environments, including improved mental health and wellbeing, physical fitness and social cohesion.
The report referenced a study that found students learning outside the classroom achieved higher scores in tests, had greater levels of physical fitness, greater motor skill development, they had increased confidence, greater leadership qualities and were more socially and environmentally conscious.
“At school, MoGC students are privileged to enjoy these green spaces during school days, using the already established tree canopy as an outdoor learning space,” Amy said.
“Students also love taking part in being outdoors and using their green spaces in physical education, lunchtime games and play, socialising and keeping fit.”