Department of Education

Sustainable Schools WA

Sustainable Schools WA

Dawson Park Primary

Teaching and Learning

In 2004 and 2005 it was determined that students at Dawson Park Primary could benefit from further educational support in two main areas namely the ability to work together cooperatively in small groups and science (specifically the ability to inquire and investigate scientifically). It was felt that support in these key areas would have significant implications for students in terms of their ability to contribute towards the long-term sustainability of our community.

Staff from Department of Environment & Conservation's Indigenous Heritage Unit came and spoke with Years 5-7 students about the local dreaming story and experiences of the 'stolen generation' which widened children's' sphere of awareness and fostered respect for others and the land.

The revegetation of Yongar Reserve is part of a wider Education for Sustainability program at the school incorporating:

  • Construction of nesting boxes (see photograph below)
  • Creation of frog-friendly environments
  • Participation in Clean Up Australia Day
  • Package-free lunch days
  • Worm farming, composting
  • Permaculture gardening
  • Research projects – banksia moth baiting, native plant propagation techniques
  • Participation in, and promotion of, Healthy Earth Living Planet Fund, a carbon offset program for schools run by Friends of the Environment Inc. (FOTE), a local community group ( to further fund these and other projects that may develop over time
  • Participation in ‘Junior FOTE’, establishing networks between students from several local schools in support of local sustainability activities and leadership opportunities

Children now enjoy more rewarding learning experiences across the school. Academic gains are being made in science as students are now more engaged in learning and interactions between students and between students and teachers have improved dramatically, reflected in regular surveys we perform.

Across the school, the five 'Tribes Agreements' (mutual respect, attentive listening, personal best/responsibility, right to pass, appreciations/no put downs) are combined with the three 'Rights' (right to be safe, right to teach and learn, right for our property to be looked after) to simplify communication of our school's expectations.

The result has been effective changes made across the school with regard to personal behaviour and the choices children are making.


Dawson Park Primary

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