New classroom brings learning to life
Roebourne District High School students are looking forward to spending more time outside thanks to a new custom-designed outdoor learning area.
The Roebourne Living Classroom, which includes benches, blackboards, sand to draw in and a yarning circle all linked by a goanna-shaped pathway, was formally opened at a ceremony last Friday.
Members of the wider Roebourne community were invited to attend and Boonderu Music Academy tutors Qynn Beardman and Josie Alec performed for the crowd.
School principal David Paine said the living classroom was a space where students could think more creatively out in the fresh air.
“Learning is not isolated to a classroom. It’s not isolated to a building,” he said.
“If we wanted our staff and our students to recognise that education is all around us and learning happens anywhere where we are, we need (to) facilitate an outdoor space that is conducive to our students’ needs.”
“It’s really important to have an open space (which) sparks students’ innovation and creativity to work together, to talk through ideas.
“It’s structured, but not in terms of a classroom environment, which dates back to the industrial age.
“We just wanted to create... a space where students can move, they can work together, they can explore what they’re interested in without having to feel constricted to behind a desk, behind four walls.”
Mr Paine said staff also wanted to use the area to teach students about gardening, healthy eating and sustainability by growing vegetables in garden beds and using them in cooking.
Woodside North West Shelf Project maintenance team leader Jason Attard attended the opening on behalf of sponsors the Roebourne Education Initiative, and said the company was proud to support the project.
“It’s exciting for us to be involved with a project that has created a unique and engaging outdoor learning space on school grounds,” he said.
Woodside’s Jason Attard and Roebourne District Senior High School principal David Paine with students Sharliya Mowarin, 7, Toby Cedar, 6, and Patrick Dingo, 15 at the living classroom.