Topic 6: Tree-mendous Trees (and Reforestation)

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Trees help regulate the climate and give us all life through oxygen! (Thanks trees, we think you’re rad). A key message during this topic is the fact that we’ve already altered the landscape here in Aotearoa-NZ in significant ways in order to build our cities and grow our food. But this happens over long periods of time and so this isn’t always that intuitive - students will be challenged to think about how their locality used to look before humans arrived in the area, and how it’s changed into what it’s become today. How would they like it to look in the future?

Core objective:

  • Year 1-2: Understand that the way we use land has reduced tree cover in Aotearoa significantly, and that this is causing environmental harm. Trees are valuable and life giving.
  • Year 3-5, 6-8: Land-use change has reduced tree cover in Aotearoa significantly - this is damaging the environment and driving climate change. Trees help prevent climate change and give us life.

Mātauranga Māori: To be decided (it's a working progress! 🙂)

Call-to-Action: Plant a tree!

Year 1 and 2 - Level 1

Major links 

The Arts

  • Drama - Developing Ideas
  • Visual arts - Developing Practical Knowledge

English 

  • Speaking - Ideas

Science 

  • Planet Earth and Beyond - Earth systems, Interacting systems

Minor Links

Mathematics and Statistics

  • Number and Algebra - Number knowledge (if you choose to assign different buildings different values in the main activity) 

Year 3 - 5 Level 2 and 3 

Major links 

English 

  • Speaking, Presenting - Ideas, Processes and strategies

Science 

  • Planet Earth and Beyond - Earth systems, Interacting systems (level 2)
  • Nature of science - Investigating science, Communicating in science, Participating and contributing
  • Material World - Properties and changes of matter, Chemistry and society

Mathematics and Statistics

  • Geometry and Measurement - Measurement


Minor links 

The Arts

  • Visual arts - Developing Practical Knowledge

Year 6-8 Level 3 and 4

Major links 

English 

  • Speaking, Presenting - Ideas, Processes and strategies

Science 

  • Planet Earth and Beyond - Earth systems
  • Nature of science - Investigating science, Communicating in science, Participating and contributing
  • Material World - Properties and changes of matter, Chemistry and society, The structure of matter (level 4)

Mathematics and Statistics

  • Geometry and Measurement - Measurement

Minor links 

The Arts

  • Visual arts - Developing Practical Knowledge

Years 1 - 2

Core Objective:

Understand how much land-use change has reduced tree cover in Aotearoa, and that trees are valuable and life-giving.

Lesson summary:

This week's suggested lesson plan begins with students sitting outside and considering the many benefits of trees. Following this they will be taken on a journey back in time, imagining how Aotearoa’s forest looked 1000 years ago, supported by a gentle forest soundscape. After the peace of this imagined forest, students will role play as trees and explorers, faced with the dilemma of preserving nature or building for the needs of their communities. Finally students engage in a discussion about the reasons we have in the past, and continue to cut down trees.

Topic Call-to-Action:

Plant a tree!


Remember - feel free to give us direct feedback by commenting directly on the lesson plans themselves!

Did you find alternative resources or an alternative use for this lesson plan in your classroom? Share it here!

Year 1 - 2 Resource
Extra Resources

Extra Resources:

  • Can we offset everything with trees, and keep going business as usual? (20 minutes)
  • Rātā me te Rākau (Rātā and the Tree) - a myth about the forests (10 minutes)
  • Tāne Mahuta - a myth about the creation of the forests (5 minutes)
  • How carbon moves around (20 minutes)
  • Letters from the future - writing focus (30 minutes)
  • What can trees tell us about climate change? (20 minutes)
  • Fun with trees - colouring in and quiz (10 minutes)
  • Tree treasure hunt (20 minutes)
  • Make a tin pot plant (30 minutes)

Years 3 - 5

Core Objective:

Understand how much land-use change has reduced tree cover in Aotearoa, and how trees play a vital part in reducing climate change.

Lesson summary:

This week's suggested lesson plan begins with students being taken on a journey back in time. Using  their imaginations, archive footage and maps they will then look through the centuries to watch as Aotearoa’s forests are cut down, and consider the reasons behind this. Through video, discussion and using objects from around the classroom students will then learn about the carbon cycle and why trees are so important in the climate fight. Finally in groups students will measure the carbon sequestered in trees on school grounds, and make signs to celebrate the tremendous work these trees are doing to fight climate change.

Topic Call-to-Action:

Plant a tree!


Remember - feel free to give us direct feedback by commenting directly on the lesson plans themselves!

Did you find alternative resources or an alternative use for this lesson plan in your classroom? Share it here!

Year 3 - 5 Resource
Extra Resources

Extra Resources:

  • Can we offset everything with trees, and keep going business as usual? (20 minutes)
  • Rātā me te Rākau (Rātā and the Tree) - a myth about the forests (10 minutes)
  • Tāne Mahuta - a myth about the creation of the forests (5 minutes)
  • How carbon moves around (20 minutes)
  • Letters from the future - writing focus (30 minutes)
  • What can trees tell us about climate change? (20 minutes)
  • Fun with trees - colouring in and quiz (10 minutes)
  • Tree treasure hunt (20 minutes)
  • Make a tin pot plant (30 minutes)

Years 6 - 8

Core Objective:

Understand how much land-use change has reduced tree cover in Aotearoa, and how trees play a vital part in reducing climate change.

Lesson summary:

This week's suggested lesson plan begins with students being taken on a journey back in time. Using  their imaginations, archive footage and maps they will then look through the centuries to watch as Aotearoa’s forests are cut down, and consider the reasons behind this. Through video, discussion and using objects from around the classroom students will then learn about the carbon cycle and why trees are so important in the climate fight. Finally in groups students will measure the carbon sequestered in trees on school grounds, and make signs to celebrate the tremendous work these trees are doing to fight climate change.

Topic Call-to-Action:

Plant a tree!


Remember - feel free to give us direct feedback by commenting directly on the lesson plans themselves!

Did you find alternative resources or an alternative use for this lesson plan in your classroom? Share it here!

Year 6 - 8 Resource
Extra Resources

Extra Resources:

  • Can we offset everything with trees, and keep going business as usual? (20 minutes)
  • Rātā me te Rākau (Rātā and the Tree) - a myth about the forests (10 minutes)
  • Tāne Mahuta - a myth about the creation of the forests (5 minutes)
  • How carbon moves around (20 minutes)
  • Letters from the future - writing focus (30 minutes)
  • What can trees tell us about climate change? (20 minutes)
  • Fun with trees - colouring in and quiz (10 minutes)
  • Tree treasure hunt (20 minutes)
  • Make a tin pot plant (30 minutes)

Core Objective:

Understand, explore and apply Tikanga practices to tree planting

Description:

Whanaungatanga is about relationship, kinship and a sense of family [whānau] connection. It is created through shared experiences and working together and provides people with a sense of belonging.

Whanaungatanga recognises whakapapa or genealogy as an integral component of this value. Certain values are attached to whanaungatanga in Te ao Māori such as:

  • Aroha
  • Tikanga
  • Whakapapa
  • Manaakitanga
  • Tuākana-Teina

Lesson plans:

This weeks Mātauranga Māori topic ‘Whanaungatanga’ will focus on our relationships with Trees. Te Ao Māori highlights Trees as being a part of our whānau and therefore we consider trees our cousins. Their qualities are our qualities and their creator is our creator. Tāne Mahuta!

This topic looks further into how we can give back to our whenua and whānau members in the natural world, ‘Tuku Aroha’. Capitalising on your call to action for this week. Your aim is to build understanding and confidence to integrate a cultural ceremony as a way of acknowledging Tāne Mahuta and paying respects to all our cuzzies across the motu. Utilising the opportunity of tree planting as a place of ceremonial tribute to Tāne Mahuta and all his offsprings.

These Te Ao Māori resources have kindly been put together by Hinga

Impact Metric

1469.0
trees
were planted by
26
Classrooms

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