Children love time outside and what better way to learn about conservation than with a walk to the local reserve...  








Learning about environmental sustainability as part of Conservation week took Kidsfirst Wales Street children, parents and teachers to their local Westlake Reserve.


Run by the Department of Conservation (Te Papa Atawhai), the theme for the 2016  Conservation Week was ‘Healthy Nature, Healthy People’.


It encouraged families to ‘get into nature’ to raise awareness of the link between a sustainable, natural environment and their own health.


Children were asked to identify a favourite place in their kindergarten community that they could help to take extra special environmental care of, to practice Kaitiakitanga (guardianship of the land).


Halswell’s nearby Westlake Reserve was top of the list and a favourite place to be for these tamariki, who often head there with family and friends to enjoy the lake and playground – and to feed the ducks.


“Tamariki have learnt that it’s better not to feed ducks with bread as it lacks nutritional value and can damage the eco-system by ‘muddying’ the water,” says Head Teacher, June King.


To still enjoy feeding these feathered friends, there are options of other nutritious foods. Kidsfirst Wales Street tamariki mixed together a special, wholesome mix of peas, corn, barley and oats.


June adds, “We went ready to find and collect rubbish but were delighted to find that there was nothing to pick up!”


- “Children connected to nature will want to enjoy it and save it, now and in the future.” – DOC




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