Blog 10 - Blogging some other thoughts and images

This is a part of the port at Dunwich, a small town on Stradbroke Island where the Research Centre is located. On the wall of a part of the port you can see a big aboriginal flag painted on the wall.  We were privileged with a Welcome to Country by Auntie Joan, an elder from the Quandamooka people, to Minjerribah (the aboriginal name for Stradbroke Island).  I have only learnt a little about the aboriginal people of this island and area, some of it horrific (their treatment on the leprosy colony) and some of it inspiring (the fight for traditional custodian/ownership rights).  I would like to ensure that any work I do around this topic in the future embeds an indigenous perspective.  

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Blog 7 - The best day so far - except for the dead pilchers ;(

Today was the best day so far. I wouldn't ever pick this to do as a holiday activity but it was lots of fun. We placed cameras on the seagrass meadows alongside the Mangroves. We explored the Mangrove forest and saw lots of liny crabs and learnt about the different species of Mangrove - we even licked a few to taste the salt the expel through their leaves.  We also learnt about how they breathe in the mud but sending up roots that stick up from the ground like a mini forest. We then went back to collect our submerged cameras...hopefully there will be some cool footage of creatures munching on the pilchers (the dead fish bait we used).

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Blog 6 - A different day

Day Two of field work was a day out of the water, staying dry and filming samples on the sea bed.  Besides feeling sick today in the rough water it was a great day.

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Blog 5 - War wounds, exhaustion and lots of new things

Today was the first day of field work. I spent the day on the 'Tender' a small dinghy collecting samples of sea grass and catching glimps of shy turtles. We learnt about the different varieties of seagrass.  The war wounds came from jumping in and out of the dinghy after collecting samples.  We were using a GPS to track our location and recording the status of the seagrass, how much and what varieties.  We had a great lunch on the big boat and spent the afternoon again in the dinghy. The evening finished with a talk by an expert on sharks and I slept REALLY well.

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Day 4 - First day

So today has been full of travel and meeting new people. It has also been time to think. Think about all the questions I have. Listening to the conversations of my colleagues and knowing that deep down those conversations need to change (more on that later).

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Blog 3 - Ethical problems to consider

1. Sharks and shark nets? Do I want these?

2. Travelling for educational purposes - the use of flight

3. Impact of travelling on water

4. What do I do at home that contributes? Melbourne Waterways - what are the connections?

5. Contact with animals. Is it a good thing?

These are just some of the ethical problems I'm starting to think about before I embark on my expedition.

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Blog 2 - the count down begins

So I'm starting to get nervous as I pack my bag and tick off all the things I still need to do. Yesterday as I was trying on wetsuits (an adventure in itself - those things are tight and hot and I was sweating just getting it on) I was talking to the sales assistant telling him what I was about to do and where I was going and why I needed a wetsuit...he said...its not the stingers you need to be worried about...its the sharks! Yikes!! My heart jumped out of my chest.

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Blog 1 - Hopes and expectations (one week to go)

So in 10 days time I will be on my journey to Stradbroke Island to explore sea grass. What have I got myself into? Things are crazy at school at this time of year but this is an opportunity I can't miss.  I know... sea grass right. What could be cool about sea grass?  So much. I'm really excited about this opportunity because I really believe in the notion and practice of citizen science and applying a scientific method to our thinking in all areas of learning.  While I feel I have a strong understanding of the scientific method and practices I really want to improve my abilities to embed it into my teaching in other areas.

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