The Waitākere Ranges was the backdrop for an adventure race packed with sustainability challenges for over sixty teams from ten Auckland schools earlier this month.
The launch of the 2017 Sustainability Challenge Series saw students from Albany to Epsom learn how to dig for historical artefacts, identify native bird calls and prevent kauri dieback while navigating to check points and working as a team to collect points.
With two more innovative team events taking place this year at different Auckland Regional Parks, the aim is to get students into Auckland’s beautiful natural environment to learn about the sustainability issues facing our native flora and fauna.
Each event includes a range of challenges to help students understand how Auckland Regional Parks are managed, how special they are, the threats they are exposed to and how students can help to minimise these.
The hands-on sustainability team challenges are designed to encourage junior school students actively participate in environmental science, says Auckland Council Park Ranger Stuart Leighton.
"By bringing students and their environment together in a fun way, and providing positive experiences that stick, we hope to see kiwi kids grow up wanting to play their part in Auckland’s sustainability and help keep our parks pest free.”
How does it work?
Teams of four students compete in an event, which includes a mix of running/trekking and navigation to as many checkpoints as they can, collecting points for each checkpoint visited. To earn extra points, teams complete sustainability activities that require research and teamwork.
Want to join a challenge?
There are two more events taking place this year:
- Tuesday 8 August (week 2 Term 3) at the Auckland Botanical Gardens
- Tuesday 31 October (week 2 Term 4) at Wenderholm Regional Park