Rubbish and the Reef – Through kids’ eyes

Every generation says it….children are our future when it comes to protecting our natural environment.

And that’s why teachers at Gladstone’s Stepping Stones childcare centre have been having some important conversations with their four and five-year-olds this year about litter, especially plastic bags, ending up in our waterways.

One teacher came away from visiting Fraser Island earlier in the year with rubbish collected from the beach.

She set it up in a room at the centre to start the discussion with her young charges and they’re still talking about it.

With Ecofest on the horizon, the Gladstone Regional Art Gallery and Museum curator, Jo Duke, asked Centre director, Heather Curran, if the kids would do some drawings related to the theme ‘Turn a New Leaf, Love our Reef’.

They called on their personal experiences including visits to Bali, going on the Larc at Seventeen Seventy or out in a boat fishing, to help them decide what to draw.

The children focused on different animals on the reef, in the oceans and other waterways, as the centre of their concerns – crocodiles, sharks and turtles.

They were also videoed talking about their drawings, so their voices will be used as a soundtrack to explain their artworks to visitors at Ecofest on Sunday, June 3.

You can find their art and the video on display at the Tondoon Botanic Gardens’ art gallery. Young visitors will be able to create their own reef themed drawings in the gallery on the day.

Stepping Stones childcare centre will continue their environmental education theme next term, when the kids visit the Quoin Island Turtle Rehabilitation Centre.