Use your best survey skills to identify any threats to the trees in the playground.
- Choose a large area outside to measure. Take a trundle wheel and measure the length and width to calculate the total area. Draw this area on paper to begin a basic map with BOLTS (border, orientation, legend, title, scale). Use a compass to help you add an arrow to show north on your map.
- Count the number of native trees, shrubs and grasses (use the iNaturalist app to help you) inside this area. Draw these trees on your map. You may like to come up with a special symbol that represents a ‘native tree’.
- Look around for threats to this native vegetation and mark the following on the map:
- Evidence of lightning strike
- Plant theft
4. Shade the areas that cannot be used for planting due to concrete and buildings on your map.
Estimate the area covered by natural and human features in your area.
- Use Google Earth to look at your local area and get a bigger picture. Zoom out to see as much of the area as possible. Zoom in to see your school playground.
- Print the Google Earth image of your whole town, suburb or local area. Overlay the image with a 1cm square grid then, count the squares which cover natural areas (trees, shrubs, grasslands, waterways). Count the squares that cover human-made areas such as roads, houses, buildings. Compare the numbers.
- Is there more nature or more infrastructure in your area? Conduct interviews with your classmates, teachers and others to ask if they believe more trees should be planted.
Keep the above data for other activities.