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Summary Page: Life at the Boundary - investigating natural hazards
Term 4 starting 31 October 2017.



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1.9 million tourists visited Aotearoa New Zealand last year and you can be sure that what they came to see was our beautiful country. Agree? Spectacular volcanoes, hot pools, high mountains, fiords, rugged coastlines, rivers and rolling countryside. Paradise! But how did it get to be like this?

New Zealand came to be this way because, like other countries located on the 'Pacific Ring of Fire', we straddle a boundary between two colossal tectonic plates. This natural hazards virtual field trip in early November will take your students on a journey right to that boundary! You will see dinosaur fossils, fault lines, plus evidence of past and recent earthquakes, tsunamis and landslides that all helped to create the landscapes we see today. You'll explore the difference between a natural hazard and a disaster.

Living in New Zealand means that your students, during their lifetime, are likely to experience an emergency caused by a natural hazard. Knowing how to reduce the impact of natural disasters on people and property, including ways to make your own home more resilient, is very important.

To prepare for this field trip, LEARNZ content will support inquiry into:

  • what natural hazards are
  • what causes natural hazards
  • earthquakes in New Zealand
  • landslides in New Zealand
  • tsunami
  • the tsunami hazard in New Zealand
  • the Earthquake Commission and Fix Fasten Don't Forget
  • monitoring and detecting natural hazards

During this field trip you will:

  • see Shelley's tweets on twitter
  • travel to remote locations in Hawke's Bay to uncover evidence of earthquakes
  • see the effect of earthquake events on the landscape and how they affected people
  • visit places where tsunami are a real hazard and assess the risks
  • explore where landslides have created massive new landscape features
  • meet engineers, scientists and people involved in trying to understand natural hazards and how we cope with them
  • learn about instruments and processes used to detect and monitor New Zealand's geohazards
  • have the opportunity to share one experience of an extreme natural event
  • follow what's happening on the website and on twitter at #learnztrip

After the field trip, challenge yourself to:

  • investigate the risks of earthquakes, tsunami and landslides and other natural hazards in your area
  • make your home more resilient to natural hazards
  • check out the East Coast LAB (Life at the Boundary) website
  • bookmark the GeoNet website so you can go there whenever there is an earthquake
  • tell people about World Tsunami Day - Sunday 5 November

Where you will go

You will travel to Hawke's Bay where two colossal tectonic plates meet. The area between the plates is known as the Hikurangi plate boundary: a natural laboratory for our field trip! Your hosts will be the team from East Coast LAB (Life at the Boundary) based in Napier, where you will get to know experts on natural hazards. On this field trip you will learn more about the risks and impacts of an emergency where you live and what you can do to prepare yourself.

Teacher comments about previous LEARNZ field trips

Direct connection to what we were studying in our syndicate, all resources in one place, real people and real context helped engage the children in the learning. All resources are New Zealand appropriate and very suitable for my Year 5&6 class. I felt very supported with instant responses to the emails I sent. Lisa O'Connor from St Teresa's School Featherston

This Geohazards virtual field trip hit the nail on the head as a learning tool for Year 8 Earth Science. It has been a great chance for a small rural Northland school to see the wider world, and has broadened my horizons in terms of what is possible with my classes. Adrian Humm from Ruawai College

The students now have an increased sense of responsibility and citizenship regarding Geohazards, especially as I was able to completely integrate the learning into my reading and writing programme. The resources are amazing and so perfect because they are about N.Z. and show how scientists work. Dorothy Hutton from Columba College

Go to more teacher comments about related LEARNZ field trips.

Learning Areas/Levels

Science: Planet Earth and Beyond Levels 2-8, Nature of Science Levels 2-8, Earth and Space Science Levels 7-8; Social Sciences: Geography Levels 6-8; Social Studies: Place and Environment Levels 2-5

  • Vision, Values, Key Competencies, Principles, Literacy and Numeracy

    By their nature, LEARNZ field trips integrate with the higher levels of the NZ Curriculum. Participation encourages development of the Key Competencies around Thinking, Using language, symbols and text, Managing self, Relating to others, and Participating and contributing. Teachers indicate this in testimonials. LEARNZ field trips have support and activities for Literacy, with opportunities to develop skills in Listening, Reading and Viewing and in Speaking, Writing and Presenting. More about LEARNZ as a Reading Resource and student writing opportunities with LEARNZ. Select LEARNZ field trips have support and activities for Numeracy, encouraging the development of skills in Number and Algebra, in Statistics and in Geometry and Measurement.

  • ESOL

    As well as providing visual and audio material and access to real experiences, LEARNZ links well to ESOL Principles, especially Principle 3 Maintain and make explicit the same learning outcomes for all the learners. How can I make the lesson comprehensible to all students? How can I plan the learning tasks so that all the students are actively involved? Do my students understand the learning outcomes? Principle 4 Begin with context embedded tasks which make the abstract concrete. How can I put these concepts into a concrete context?

  • What's in a Field Trip

    Every LEARNZ field trip has its own newly-built, self-contained web site ready for integration into your teaching and learning programme. Teacher Support has curriculum integration, resources, newsletters, support and evaluation. Prepare Students provides opportunities for student inquiry on two sets of image-rich background pages at reading levels 2 years apart, (students can click to have those pages read to them out loud), online interactive and other activities to check students' understanding, and a glossary. During the field trip there are live tweets on twitter, and daily additions such as a diary, video clips, profiles of the experts (ideal careers education), a photo gallery, and ambassador (mascot) page updates. Live web conferences via Adobe Connect enable teachers to managed students putting prepared and spontaneous questions to experts (recorded for replay). After the field trip, teachers are encouraged to take further action with their class in the community or to go on a related field trip, or to invite a guest speaker, or to present what they have learned to a wider group. Teachers also fill in an online evaluation (more about reflective practice), the field trip prize winner is drawn, and the final newsletter is sent. Content remains online for continued use.

  • How teachers use LEARNZ

    View teacher comments in testimonials and in the LEARNZ Group on the VLN. There are two main ways teachers use a LEARNZ virtual field trip with their class. Firstly, a LEARNZ field trip is ideally an immersive, engaging, synchronous, online learning experience with real-time components and a myriad of opportunities for teachers and students. Secondly, and less ideal but still effective, a LEARNZ field trip can be used as a retrospective experience where the resources such as photos, text, activities, videos and audioconferences/web conferences comprise a unique collection of authentic, contemporary New Zealand teaching and learning material.

  • What Now

    Not Registered with LEARNZ? Are you a New Zealand Registered or Provisionally-Registered Teacher? Register free with LEARNZ Now.

    Already Registered with LEARNZ and activated your account? Log in to your personal MyLEARNZ Control Panel and then enrol your classes at no cost in field trips. Note: Enrolment is only needed for the current and future year's field trips.

    Registered but need help? Check your email for activation instructions - contact us if the message did not make it to your email inbox. Log on to MyLEARNZ. Go to Getting Started.

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Shelley the LEARNZ Field Trip Teacher.

Meet Shelley, your LEARNZ Field Trip Teacher

Inquiry Topics: citizenship, earth processes, earth science, earthquake research, earthquakes, fossils, future focus, geohazards, hazards, landslides, plate tectonics, science, scientific research, seismic monitoring, tectonic plates, tsunami, volcanoes

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