Taking the classroom outside on KI

Third-year students undertaking a Bachelor of Sport, Health and Physical Activity, specialising in Outdoor Education, recently ventured out of the classroom on a field trip to apply their learning and development in a real-world example as preparation for their transition to professional work.

The students spent five days on Kangaroo Island, building on the local partnerships established by last year’s cohort that visited KI in the aftermath of devastating bushfires.

Joss Rankin, Senior Lecturer with the College of Education, Psychology and Social Work, accompanied the students to KI and says the trip provides an excellent opportunity for the students to practice their knowledge and skills before graduating to start their careers.

“We let the students take the lead with all the planning, preparation and implementation for this trip. It’s one of the last opportunities they have as students to test what they’ve learnt over the past three years,” says Mr Rankin. “They can reflect on their development and growth to ensure they’re all set to go into the real world.”

“I love coming on field trips, to get a chance to see all the puzzle pieces come together for the students, and to contribute to the KI community that has welcomed us so warmly.”

The trip enables students to apply their skills to help the local community with activities.

Student Maia Schnaars was part of a group that visited Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife, a not-for-profit biodiversity conservation program providing refuge for local animals, such as the endangered KI dunnart, while improving their habitat.

“Staff at Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife were great to spend time with. We helped them pull out invasive weeds, which helps native flora regrow in the area and provide a safe haven for many of the animals,” she says.

“The work they’re doing to revegetate and protect some areas devastated by the fires, and to remove pests like cats, will help native flora and fauna return to the area and thrive.”

Other students went to Kangaroo Island Community Education (KICE), a multi-campus school established in 2005 after a community initiative reviewed the model of education delivery on Kangaroo Island. The school, which teaches Reception to Year 12 across three campuses, operates outdoor education activities for its students.

Student Nikki Wall created a video to commemorate the trip, which you can view below.

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College of Education Psychology and Social Work