Methven Primary School teachers Phoebe Todd and Erica George are off on an environmental education and leadership development programme.
Funded by the Ministry of Education, the BLAKE Inspire for Teachers programme offers experiential learning opportunities and practical ideas that will help encourage environmental action, conservation and sustainability in schools.
Over five days delegates will be teamed with world-leading scientists, environmental leaders and experts in their fields to learn about issues such as climate change, freshwater quality, biodiversity and ocean health.
Phoebe and Erica are both second year teachers at Methven and both are keen on the outdoors.
Phoebe is the school’s enviro leader and has 26 Year 5/6 students involved in regular conservation and growing projects.
Every second week students clean up litter in their lunch break, Phoebe said.
The school had bokashi composting, new recycling policies and was looking to expand its vege gardens.
“I’m really excited to be going off and getting a deeper understanding of environmental issues and then applying that knowledge back at school.”
It was important for students to understand about conservation and the environment from a young age because they were future guardians of our land.
Erica, who teaches new entrants, said she was still awaiting exact programme details, but she knew that previous delegates had been able to visit predator-free islands near Auckland with Department of Conservation staff.
“We’re going to be busy from 8am until 9pm each day, and I’m really looking forward to learning more, networking and sharing ideas with other teachers.”
Erica, who hails from the eastern Bay of Plenty is on the programme next month and Waimate-raised Phoebe is in Auckland in October.
The pair are flatmates in Methven and enjoy hiking, skiing and biking.
Both have also travelled and worked at skifields in Canada.