The Year 7 and 8 Glasshouse Christian College students enjoyed an amazing few days of first-hand experiential learning in North Queensland last week. While their accommodation was based in Cairns, they travelled as far as the Daintree, Mossman Gorge, Kuranda and the Great Barrier Reef. In Cairns they visited the Museum, the Aquarium, the Botanic Gardens and Cattana Wetlands.
A few fun facts learned whilst travelling and visiting these locations:
- Male and female crocodiles are almost impossible to tell the difference between
- Parrot fish have a beak-like mouth and eat coral. They are reef cleaners and are important in maintaining the health of this ecosystem.
- It wasn’t until the early 1900s that scientists discovered that coral was an animal. While it fits the five criteria for an animal, it doesn’t have a brain.
- Authentic didgeridoos are made from small trees that have had their centre eaten out by whiteants.
- Until snorkel gear was invented in 1932, most people had no real idea what the reef really looked like.
- The 37 kms of the Kuranda railway track was entirely built by hand and people could only get work if they had their own pick and shovel.
- A few of our students saw a shark lay eggs!
- Stingrays babies begin life looking like rolled up burritos. They are ovoviviparous, meaning the young are hatched from eggs that are held within the body.
- The more brightly coloured butterflies don’t live as long as other butterflies. They also need to fly quickly and rapidly to avoid predators as they are more visible.
- The epaulette shark can walk on land!
- Some of the teachers are good at the ‘shake a leg’ indigenous dance.
GCC would like to thank the Queensland Government’s Great Barrier Reef Education Experience Program subsidy for providing funding of $150 per student towards the cost of this excursion. The opportunity for students to enjoy and explore the Great Barrier Reef and to learn first-hand about its fauna and flora was a life-time experience.
Jacq Vreeling, Head of Middle School
GCC families can see all the photos on Pixevety in the albums below. If you have Pixevety open, these links will take you directly to the photos.