Rats and ice cream
The Black-footed Tree-rat was the fact-finding and fundraising focus of Berry Springs Primary School students
The rodent — central to the students’ local animal care plan — is the subject of a Territory Wildlife Park research and breeding program.
The students used ice cream sales from a family night to help advance the park’s project.
Teacher Colleen Williams said: “The more than $900 raised by their retail stall is being used to buy a special camera, allowing park rangers to examine the secret lives of this nocturnal species.
“In three weeks of class readings about the rats, factual report structure and subject specific words were deconstructed and analysed.
“It helped the students use persuasive writing to create ice cream stall posters and reports on why the rats are endangered, and how we could save them.
“We were lucky enough to be visited by two park rangers and two adorable black-footed tree-rats.
“The children prepared questions to ask the visitors, and gathered more information for their reports and [stall] posters.”
Ms Williams said the successful inquiry process and fundraising initiative was “driven by the enthusiasm and passion” of the class of 25 students, and the outcome has excited the rangers and the students.