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Stage 6 Interaction of the Biophysical Environment

Student Outcomes

The students will learn to:

  • P3 Explain how Narrabeen’s coast functions in terms of its biophysical factors. * To analyse the effects of human impacts on the functioning of the hydrosphere at the lagoon entrance and assess if this is being managed sustainably.
  • P7 Formulate and implement a plan for an active geographical inquiry of a beach dune, started pre-field trip.
  • P9 Use maps, aerial photographs and fieldwork to conduct a geographic inquiry on Narrabeen Headland * Investigate a Case Study – the Coastal Development Issue on Collaroy / Narrabeen Beach.
  • P10 Apply mathematical ideas and techniques to analyse geographical data, completed after the field trip.

Sample program

Arrive CEC at North Narrabeen, brief lecture on the Narrabeen Coast to introduce: An overview of how the interaction of the biophysical environment has produced this coast, review what each sphere contributes to this area, discuss local coastal and hydrological processes, the role of beach dunes and  learn about past storm damage and current management of oceanfront development along Collaroy/Narrabeen embayment.

If time, students create waves with our wave tank and form coastal landforms with our augmented reality sand box, during a short morning tea break in the CEC.

Begin field study at Narrabeen Headland, identify the physical processes that are shaping the Narrabeen coastline. Complete a field sketch of the case study area to show the current shoreline and annotate their sketch to show how longshore currents and waves can bring sediment into the entrance. Students review the maintenance dredging and flood risk management strategies.

After walking over the lagoon bridge, we will identify coastal plants and they will observe how the dune blowout is still active on the foredune and assess the efforts at stabilising this dynamic site.

Students will undertake a geographical transect into the functioning and status of a beach dune. Each student will use a geographic tool to measure one abiotic factor such as; gradient, distance, wind strength or direction, soil type, moisture or temperature, light and dominant vegetation to record primary data from the shoreline over the foredune dune. As a group we will collate and briefly interpret data. Graph later.

Lunch at NNSLSC, where shade, toilets and two food shops are nearby.

Travel by bus to Collaroy Beach to observe the development that was damaged during the 2016 storm. Recall and discuss the images and management strategies that were described in the morning lecture. Discuss why this site has not been sustainably managed.

Conclude a productive and enjoyable field trip. If you can stay another 30-40mins, students can create a sand barrier and test their barriers against wave erosion.