Students woke to a misty -4° morning on day 2 (we hope that means there will be plenty of snow on Wednesday!).
Cockington Green Gardens
“The first thing that we did today was going to Cokington Green Gardens. The morning was foggy and fresh and we went the 10 minute walk there. When we got into the garden we all started to explore. The miniature villages were cute and realistic and we saw movie characters and famous sites. We all really enjoyed seeing it” – Leah Hobday
Students were set the task of investigating the displays in small groups and photographing the strangest miniature they could find. A special treat is in store for the winning group when they’re announced tomorrow night.
The chill didn’t dampen students’ spirits as they explored different architectures and building styles from around the world, raced each other on the model railway, and experimented with the ice that had frozen over the miniature lakes and streams.
Gold Creek Station
For a change a pace, our next stop was Gold Creek Station. This working sheep station is something of a hidden gem, just a few minutes out of Canberra city. Students were divided into two groups for activities, which included rounding up the sheep, wrangling them, cuddling the week-old lambs (naaaawwww!) and a shearing demonstration.
“The farm was awesome and exciting because we learnt about how farmers shear sheep and also had a chance to wrestle sheep and control them. I also liked when some people acting like sheep dogs and had to help round the sheep up” – Tadiwanashe Ngomamiti
We were introduced to some economic concepts that we won’t learn until Year 8, like how the wool industry is based on supply and demand and what “market value” means, but it was still fun to watch and get our hands dirty.
Australian War Memorial – Part 1
After lunch, we took the bus to the Australian War Memorial. This very special place has so much to see that we’ll be going twice. Today’s visit focussed on an introduction to the memorial and viewing some of the films and audiovisual presentations throughout the galleries.
We learnt that the idea for a memorial came from Charles Bean, who was a journalist during World War I (you can read more about him here). He was deeply moved by what he had seen during the war and felt that the Australian people should have a way to commemorate the soldiers and what they did. Bean was also an historian, so his idea for the War Memorial included extensive exhibits too.
“Today we went to the Australian War Memorial. It was unlike any place we had ever been before. It stops us from laughing and joking around; all we could think about was the soldiers who gave their lives for our freedom. Each feature of the museum was unique, the section about the fighter planes, submarines, World War I, World War II, Afghan War… everything the brave soldiers had to do for us, displayed in short 10 minute films. The story about the 12 year old suicide bomber was particularly moving for all of us. Brilliant displays, lots of interesting information, respectful and beautiful memorials. All of the effort put into this was just amazing to see, and we really appreciate the time taken for our first visit to the memorable Australian War Memorial” – Isabeau van der Kooy
It was then time to visit the Commemorative Courtyard and Hall of Memory. Students took in the many, many names engraved on the walls and the sight of the red poppies used to remember each soldier. One student was even able to find a great, great, great, great uncle who had served in World War I, which was a very special moment.
We look forward to visiting the War Memorial again before we leave.
A trip to Canberra wouldn’t be complete without taking in the view from Mount Ainslie. We made our way there at sunset and, despite the cold setting in again, marvelled at the views of Canberra.
“My class went to Mount Ainslie. We went and saw a big mountain and it was really awesome. We also saw the city and the landscape. Some students in my class were quite scared and they didn’t want to see the beautiful view. Also, we took a class photo and we had a really fun time” – Josiah Adeyemo