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Stage 5 Australian Environments Field Trip

Sample field trip starting at Collaroy and Long Reef Beaches.

Student outcomes

Students will learn to:

  • 5.6 Explain the geographic processes that form and transform coastal environments.
  • Compare a natural dune system with a highly developed dune system.
  • Investigate the coastal development issue on Collaroy Beach.
  • Develop geography skills to observe, measure, record and interpret primary data.

Sample program

Arrive at Collaroy Beach. Welcome and brief introduction of today's field trip by CEC Educators. Walk out onto the beach and identify and describe the coastal processes that are shaping this site. Examine the development built on the active beach zone, explain why property is at risk and describe the strategies to manage this difficult and expensive coastal issue.

Walk south to Collaroy SLSC for a brief morning tea, for the 4-5 hour program, shade and toilet facilities nearby but there isn’t any access to shops. After ~ 15 minutes board your bus and travel 7 minutes south.

On Long Reef Headland all groups rotate through the following site investigations:

  • Field sketch of DY catchment and beach. Label coastal landforms and apply 'BOLTS'.
  • Interpret the CEC Resources of aerial photographs and their topographic field map.
  • Measure and record: wind direction; strength; temperature; identify the cloud and vegetation types.
  • Observe wave refraction and the exotic species present if time.

Walk down to Long Reef Beach, and discuss how rock platforms develop. Sketch and explain why the two headlands and rock platforms are so different. On the beach, compare the coastal processes, identify a rip and areas of dune erosion and accretion.

Lunch break at Long Reef SLSC, shade and toilets nearby. After lunch students may use the CEC’s colour resource to identify dune plants. They will describe why this environment is a difficult place for plant to grow and solve the Spinifex riddle. If time, they can record vegetation and sediment changes over the dune and compare this natural dune to the developed dune at Collaroy.

Conclude a great field trip, return CEC equipment. Depart Long Reef Beach SLSC carpark.

Please note: This is an enjoyable and productive field trip. Groups of more than 90 will be split into 2 or 3 northbound and 2 or 3 southbound groups so as to avoid congestion at each site. We can fit in with your bus times and will provide detailed bus directions when booking. Local students may meet their teachers for roll call on site and walk through without bus transport. A field trip booklet pdf will be emailed to the organising teacher.