Lord Howe Island did not contain any predators until humans introduced animals such as pigs, cats, owls and rodents. Almost all of these invasive species have now been eradicated, but these eradication programs were not without their challenges.
In this lesson, students will use Lord Howe Island’s rodent eradication program as a case study of the positive impact a successfully conducted program in combination with a sense of community stewardship can have on a native environment and local flora and fauna, whilst also considering the challenges of implementing such programs when they are not initially community-led.
They will then form groups to research an introduced species and a potential eradication program, then design informative posters to convince community members to get involved in the eradication measures.
- understand the importance of community-led programs and stewardship
- understand the reasons why community members might oppose an externally led program.
- interpret a case study and explain how a rodent eradication program was implemented in an island community
- explain why introduced species need to be controlled or eradicated
- propose reasons why community stewardship is important for the success of eradication programs
- recruit community members to join their local eradication program by designing an informative poster.
Lesson guides and printables
Australian Curriculum content descriptions:
Year 8 Geography:
- Human causes and effects of landscape degradation (ACHGK051)
- Ways of protecting significant landscapes (ACHGK052)
- Evaluate sources for their reliability and usefulness and select, collect and record relevant geographical data and information, using ethical protocols, from appropriate primary and secondary sources (ACHGS056)
- Present findings, arguments and ideas in a range of communication forms selected to suit a particular audience and purpose; using geographical terminology and digital technologies as appropriate (ACHGS061)
- Reflect on their learning to propose individual and collective action in response to a contemporary geographical challenge, taking account of environmental, economic and social considerations, and predict the expected outcomes of their proposal (ACHGS062)
Year 10 Science:
- The theory of evolution by natural selection explains the diversity of living things and is supported by a range of scientific evidence (ACSSU185)
- Communicate scientific ideas and information for a particular purpose, including constructing evidence-based arguments and using appropriate scientific language, conventions and representations (ACSIS208)
Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability
Relevant parts of Year 8 Geography achievement standards:
Students explain geographical processes that influence the characteristics of places and explain how places are perceived and valued differently. They explain interconnections within environments and between people and places and explain how they change places and environments. They compare alternative strategies to a geographical challenge, taking into account environmental, economic and social factors. Students evaluate a range of primary and secondary sources to locate useful and reliable information and data. Students present findings, arguments and ideas using relevant geographical terminology and digital technologies in a range of appropriate communication forms. They propose action in response to a geographical challenge, taking account of environmental, economic and social factors, and predict the outcomes of their proposal.
Relevant parts of Year 10 Science achievement standards:
Students evaluate the evidence for scientific theories that explain the origin of the universe and the diversity of life on Earth. They explain the processes that underpin heredity and evolution. They construct evidence-based arguments and select appropriate representations and text types to communicate science ideas for specific purposes.
This lesson is part of the wider unit of work Lord Howe Island – Years 8 & 10
Time required: 70 mins
Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – facilitate class discussion, supervise group work
- Devices capable of searching the internet – one per student
- Device capable of presenting a video to the class
- Lord Howe Island rodent eradication case study
- Student Worksheet – one copy per group
This lesson is designed to build students’ competencies in the following skills:
- Community engagement
- Critical thinking
- Social skills
- Problem solving
If you would like to access additional information about Joshua Yeldham and the photographs of his wonderful exhibition 'Providence'. Please visit the Arthouse Gallery website: Joshua Yeldham - Providence (arthousegallery.com.au/exhibitions/joshua_yeldham/providence) and the artist's website: Joshua Yeldham (www.joshuayeldham.com.au) for exhibitions and his wonderful book: Surrender (joshuayeldham.com.au/the-books). Providence and Surrender were completed during and after his Artist Residency on Lord Howe Island and during his stay at the Capella Lodge (capellalodge.com.au) on Lord Howe Island.