Educational School Tours and Nature Programme
In the summer of 2008, the Educational School Tours and Nature Programme was launched. It was part-funded by a kind donation from Dieter Mennekes, a Germany businessman. He paid for a gazebo (open air class room) and nursery for native plant restoration. The response was great from the schools that participated.
The students are given a guided tour through the gully, followed by a hands on nature based activity. Most of the students stay on for lunch to relax and enjoy their surroundings.
The Nature Programme places less emphasis on imparting knowledge and more on the student’s journey of discovery of the environment through hands on learning. With small groups we have activities that explore nature so they can make their own discoveries, which encourage children to assume some responsibility in caring for their environment.
Teachers discuss with the director of the programme appropriate activities that would suit their particular group. There are also picnic tables, where students can have lunch after these activities.
Welchman Hall Gully offers children the perfect environment to explore and discover nature. Today the environment is often portrayed as needing protecting, or a dangerous place, or as some far off distant place. In all those cases, it does nothing for children to love and appreciate nature, something many adults just did naturally growing up. The Nature Programme at the Gully puts the fun and enjoyment back into nature by letting children explore and discover the world around before they start worrying about protecting it.
Aan educational tour is done through Welchman Hall Gully for 45 minutes. Then a 30 minute nature activity designed with what the students are learning in the classroom, a hands-on nature activity is given. Below are some of the topics.