Bush Blitz is Australia’s largest nature discovery project – a unique multi-million dollar partnership between the Australian Government, BHP and Earthwatch Australia.
In Australia, there are an estimated 580,000-680,000 species in Australia, but three-quarters of this biodiversity is yet to be identified. Forty-five per cent of continental Australia and over 90 per cent of our marine area have never been comprehensively surveyed by scientists. Bush Blitz aims to protect Australia’s biodiversity and build resilience in our landscapes by increasing the collection and sharing of scientific knowledge.
Bush Blitz fosters “collective action” which recognises that Australian’s must work together, to build our capacity to manage land, and understand the significant role biodiversity plays in healthy, sustainable ecosystems.
This is achieved by connecting specialist taxonomists, indigenous communities, rangers and landholders, teachers, students and BHP employees. Together they are making an extraordinary contribution to the protection of our country’s natural heritage.
Since the program began in 2010 Bush Blitz scientists (assisted by teachers and BHP employees working as research assistants in the field), have:
Check out the Government's Bush Blitz program.
Bush Blitz TeachLive is a fully-funded educational and professional development program that places Australian primary and secondary school teachers of science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) and geography as research assistants on Bush Blitz expeditions. During the expedition, teachers help scientists with vital data collection, learn scientific skills, and communicate with their students by posting blogs on the Earthwatch website, video-calling their class from the field, and creating lesson plans using their new knowledge and motivation following their Bush Blitz experience.
An example of some specific methods you may have the opportunity to use include:
To be eligible you must be an Australian teacher currently teaching years 4-12.
You do not need to be STEM or geography trained nor an experienced teacher. You just need to be passionate about STEM/geography, STEM/geography teaching, and keen to share your experiences with your school community. We particularly encourage teachers who might benefit from participation. These could include teachers less confident in teaching the STEM disciplines, experienced teachers who are keen to improve their fieldwork skills in order to instruct their students and/or teachers that want to actively demonstrate to their students the biodiversity of Australian ecosystems. Bush Blitz TeachLive provides the opportunity to broaden teacher knowledge and experiences beyond the classroom.
Taking part in Bush Blitz provides a unique opportunity to work with scientists in the field. All research techniques will be taught on site, and the scientists and project staff will be with you if you have any questions. Some sites contain limited facilities, so it is important you are comfortable with:
* One position will be reserved for an early career teacher who has taught for three years or fewer
* Two positions will be allocated to financial members (school or individual) of the relevant state or territory Science Teachers Association.
Ineligibility: If you have previously participated in Bush Blitz TeachLive, you are ineligible to apply. If you have participated on a separate Earthwatch TeachLive or TeachWild program in the last 2 years your application will receive lower priority. Education providers outside of schools (such as environmental education providers may also receive lower priority, as the program requires teaching “live” direct to a class).
Please apply (when applications are open) through the ASTA website.
Selection will be based on:
The final selection of teacher participants is at the discretion of the selection panel, which includes representatives from Bush Blitz, Earthwatch Australia and ASTA.
A member of the Bush Blitz TeachLive selection committee will contact the Principal of each shortlisted applicant to ensure support.
What is provided?
Bush Blitz TeachLive is a fully-funded program. Costs which are covered include:
This program will require a dedicated commitment by teachers. Successful applicants are expected to commit to the following.
For teachers who can’t make it to the field, the Bush Blitz Adventure Portal is a video conferencing education program designed to bring Bush Blitz straight into your classroom direct from the field.