Excursion to C.E.R.E.S Environmental Park
Year 6 students recently enjoyed a very hands-on, interesting excursion to CERES where they conducted a number of science experiments related to our waterways and the environment in general.
We began with a walk along the Merri Creek to observe the state of the creek, the regeneration of native flora and sadly, the litter traps set up to catch litter and stop it from entering the Merri Creek and ultimately the sea.
Several experiments were conducted to test the water quality, including temperature and turbidity along with phosphates, salinity, and oxygen levels.
After lunch, the girls were engaged in seeing how a house contributes to negative effects on water and soil. They tested water flow on old shower heads against a newer version. They also conducted experiments to measure phosphates in three different household detergents.
The excursion, which is linked to our unit on ‘Water,’ had us all thinking about what we use, how much we consume and perhaps the changes we can make.
by Kathy Agius, Year 6 Teacher
It really opened our eyes and blew our minds when we first saw the amount of rubbish that was washed into the drains and which eventually makes its way into rivers, streams and eventually the ocean.
We felt absolutely disgusted and ashamed of the amount of harmful chemicals that were leaching into the waterways. Eventually of course, these flow into our oceans along with a range of refuse, thrown away carelessly or blown into streets and drains. We saw cigarette butts, plastic bottles, milk cartons, lolly wrappers and broken glass.
In the water testing, we found out how many things you have to check the water for. You have to check the phosphates, the salinity, oxygen level and the speed of the water. The water we tested came from the Merri Merri Creek.
We also did experiments to find out about water usage and chemicals in our homes. People nowadays have found out more ways to save water. Old shower heads had bigger holes, which used more water. Newer ones have smaller holes, which is better for our water usage.
Water is affected by rubbish, detergents, phosphates, mobile phones and harmful chemicals, they all are thrown away by people in our country. All of the water goes to the sea and waterways.
We need to stop this and use bins instead. We can help by not putting household chemicals and cleaning agents down the sink. Don’t pour any type of oil or fat down the sink. Use the least amount of bleach/cleaning detergents when cleaning clothes and dishes. Try to use phosphate free soaps and detergents.
When we go to the shops we have to think more about what we are buying. The more food we buy with packaging means more litter in our water and bins. We need to try and buy ‘nude’ food to save our seas and waterways. Buy food and instead of using plastic bags use plastic containers to pack food. The less we use plastic, the less rubbish we have and the safer and cleaner our waterways and our oceans.
Help save our planet today. Help save our families today.
by Zara, Chelsea and Ruby, Year 6