School excursion

Exploring the rainforest

Stage 2 (Years 3-4), Geography, Copeland Tops State Conservation Area

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Join us and explore a unique rainforest environment on this Stage 2 (Years 3-4) Geography excursion at Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. Students will conduct field exercises and learn what makes rainforest areas so special.

Read more about Exploring the rainforest

Students will be guided through the dynamic rainforest in the foothills of Barrington Tops. This breathtaking area is the most accessible tract of rare dry rainforest in the Gloucester district. Walking along Copeland Creek, we’ll soak up the scenery under a canopy of red cedar, grey myrtles, shatterwood and many more majestic rainforest species.

The group will discover what a rainforest is and determine why they’re such special places and how we can conserve them. As they explore, they'll identify sustainable practices while considering the significance of the rainforest. Activities along the way may include rainforest art, data collection, a bug survey, nature observation and sensory awareness.

Uncover the mysterious wildlife that call this special place home, including koalas, spotted-tailed quolls, microbats, brush-tailed possums and wompoo pigeons. Students will discover what they eat, where they sleep and how they live in this incredibly diverse environment.

For program outline, safety and practical information about this excursion, see info for teachers

Stage Stage 2 (Years 3-4)
Learning area Geography
Student outcomes

GE2-1. Examines features and characteristics of places and environments

GE2-2. Describes the ways people, places and environments interact

GE2-3. Examines differing perceptions about the management of places and environments

GE2-4. Acquires and communicates geographical information using geographical tools for inquiry


Students will:

  • Take a guided walk through a rainforest
  • Observe and identify some of the plants and animals living in the rainforest and the relationships between them
  • Identify sustainable practice Investigate the way people value national parks
  • Discuss who organises and manages places like Copeland Tops State Conservation Area and why these national parks are so important.

Excursion details


Weekdays during school term.

Guided. Available on request.

$240 for 30 participants (includes GST). Larger school groups welcome, conditions apply.

No wheelchair access
Meeting point
Copeland Tops State Conservation Area carpark
If you would like to organise a NPWS school excursion please get in touch with local staff or use the 'Enquire' link for the online form.
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Info for teachers

All the practical information you need to know about Exploring the rainforest.

Program outline

  • Welcome, acknowledgement of Country and safety talk.
  • Introduction to the site and overview of the day
  • Walk to Mountain Maid gold mine, morning tea, toilet break.
  • Discover what a rainforest is, determine why they’re such special places and how we can conserve them.
  • Investigate features of this ancient rainforest, including stranger figs.
  • Participate in activities including nature observations, data collection, a bug survey and sensory awareness
  • Lunch
  • Return to bus along Copeland Creek
  • Return to carpark via toilets. Farewell and depart on bus.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    To get to Copeland Tops State Conservation Area from Gloucester:

    • Follow Thunderbolts Way northwest out through the village of Barrington and over the single-lane bridge
    • Continue west on Barrington Tops Forest Road until you come to Copeland village
    • Turn left onto Copeland Road and follow this road to the carpark at the end

    What to bring

    Please wear long pants, closed comfortable shoes and bring a hat and sunscreen. Be ready for all weather conditions with a jumper and raincoat. And remember to bring food and any necessary medications.

    It’s a good idea to pack your belongings in a backpack rather than a plastic bag because we have some curious birds who may try to break in and share your lunch with you.

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    Pre activity briefing: participants will be briefed at the start of the activity/day.

    Safety equipment: NPWS staff carry radios and first aid kits, hold current first aid certificates and are aware of emergency procedures.

    Staff accreditation: NPWS staff have current Senior First Aid accreditation. They are experienced in working with groups of students in the natural environment and have excellent knowledge of the specific areas they are visiting including potential hazards. NPWS is committed to a Child Safe and Friendly Environment. Our staff have been screened for child-related employment and have completed a Working with Children Check.

    Emergencies: NPWS staff are trained to deal with emergencies and emergency procedures are in place. Ongoing supervision of a student following first aid treatment will be the responsibility of the visiting school.

    Risk assessment and risk benefits

    Our rangers and guides have the technical skill and experience to assess the risks and the benefits of a variety of activities delivered as part of our learning programs.

    We believe in including opportunities that allow students to learn and experience for themselves through exploration in the natural environment.

    Please make your own risk assessment based on the information provided. Detailed potential risks and controls are provided for the site to assist teachers in risk management planning. Teachers and carers should be aware of, and consider the needs, abilities and medical conditions of students when visiting this site. The supervision of students remains the responsibility of the teacher. The school must ensure an adequate number of adult supervisors are present.


    Disability access level - no wheelchair access