A lot has happened since our last Nature Playground blog post, and I must apologise for not keeping you all up to date with what has been happening!
The Nature Playground project began at the end of 2014, when the last group of Year 7s graduated from Rostrata. That year, we had a double graduation, as the Year 6s and Year 7s both finished primary school. The gift to the school, combined from both years, was a donation towards a future Nature Playground that they wanted to see built at Rostrata, and so in 2015 we began the initial phase of seeking design ideas from the school community.
After getting the area surveyed in late 2015 we managed to finalise a design concept with a landscape architect by the end of 2016. This was based off all of the artwork/idea submissions that the students, staff, and parents had made and we worked with them throughout the year to get to the final design.
We then began the process of getting this quoted through the Department of Education, and after getting some indicative pricing in early 2017 began the process of working towards a funding goal. By the end of 2017 we had gone to tender, and by early 2018 had a contract for Stage 1 of the design in place. This was going to cover all the earthworks, the tree fort, slide, climbing frame, culvert tunnels, balancing logs, and dry creek bed. We had agreed to leave the remainder of the design for a later date once further fundraising had occurred.
We needed to get the area cleared prior to construction starting, and held a few busy bees during 2018 – a massive effort was put in by many of our parents and students.
We had the site ready to go by the end of June and it was fantastic to see construction of Stage 1 begin in Term 3 of 2018.
The who process was very quick, and the playground was ready to use by the last week of Term 3, and once Kate Ainscoe (our wonderful visual arts teacher) and some Year 6 art students got their hands on some paint, the culvert tunnel was decorated with a beautiful mural.
We have since raised more money towards the next stage of the construction, with a fantastic Quiz Night held in May of 2019, and we hope to be able to complete the playground by the end of 2020.
A huge thank you to everyone in the community who has helped with this project over the past 5 years, as well as to everyone who has donated – we wouldn’t be the school we are without the fantastic community that supports us.