On Wednesday 8 March the Year 9 Brainstretching class attended an excursion to Werribee Zoo. With excitement, our students were greeted at the gate by zoo staff who took them straight over to the Cheetah area where discussion centered around the management of animal enclosures. From there, everyone was escorted to a behind-the-scenes area, and were able to examine a closed enclosure where there was a great deal of discussion about how a major project, such as the opening of a new enclosure, is managed.
In the lead-up to the excursion, the students have been studying the use of networks and graphs as part of decision-making processes, then performing critical path analyses in order to determine the crucial activities and their timing. The students embraced the opportunity to be in a setting where real-life projects are managed and were able to ask lots of questions about the update and move of the meerkats from their old display to the current enclosure.
Students were tasked with examining the Koala enclosure, given the recent addition of a new Koala Care Centre at the Zoo, as well as the current management of building the new Elephant enclosure. The students were able to see first-hand the mathematics of managing projects. The zoo staff were very accommodating and the students certainly did OLMC proud by asking lots of probing questions and building a strong understanding of the requirements and processes.
The highlights of the day were the safari tour, which was a chance to be close to the animals out on the savannah plains. We had the good fortune of seeing three hippos all out on the banks of the water and seeing the new born zebras, one of which was only two days old.