The Kepler Track is a 'super site' for education. It's a great environment for studying geology, glaciation, life in the beech forest and Māori and European history.

Already a 'Great Walk', the Kepler Track is now also recognised as a 'Super Site' for education. At the Kepler Track students can explore the environment, learn about the geology, plant and animal life of the area, and use simple criteria to make an assessment of forest health.

If your school's enquiry-based study is looking at any of these topics, this education resource will bring the learning alive. Many of the activities are relevant to other Southland settings, although the Kepler Track is an ideal environment for exciting and educational conservation learning.

View the resource

Kepler Track Super Site education resource (PDF, 5,887K)

This comprehensive resource shows how easy it is to plan an exciting and educational conservation learning experience for your students. It offers:

  • DOC ranger field trip assistance
  • clear curriculum objectives for every activity
  • flexibility in the location of activities
  • numbered bollards on the track at activity sites
  • a backpack of resources for loan to enhance your fieldtrip
  • flexibility to use some activities in other settings
  • inquiry based learning opportunities.

About the resource

Cover of the resource.
Cover of the resource

The Kepler Track Super Site education resource includes the following chapters:

Section 1 – Introduction

  • Introduction including using this resource
  • The Kepler Track
  • Curriculum breakdown

Section 2 – Teacher notes and activities

  • Introduction
  • Pre and post visit activities for the following themes: Geology and Glaciation, The Beech Forest, Kepler Bird Life, Stoat Story, Rat Rollercoaster, Māori, and European History

Section 3 – Resources and activity sheets

  • Resources
  • Activity sheets
  • Evaluation form

Curriculum breakdown: How this Super Site relates to the national curriculum: Download the curriculum breakdown (PDF, 225K)

Learning outcomes

Level 1 and 2 Science

Planet Earth and beyond

Earth Systems

  • Explore and describe natural features and resources

Living world

Life processes

  • Recognise that all living things have certain requirements so they can stay alive


  • Recognise that living things are suited to their particular habitat


  1. Recognise that there are lots of different living things in the world and that they can be grouped in different ways.
  2. Explain how we know that some living things from the past are now extinct

Level 3 and 4 Science

Planet Earth and Beyond

Earth Systems

  • Appreciate that water, air, rocks and soil, and life forms make up our planet and recognise that these are also earth's resources.

Living World

Life processes

  • Recognise that there are life processes common to all living things and that these occur in different ways


  • Explain how living things are suited to their particular habitat and how they respond to environmental changes, both natural and humaninduced.


  1. Begin to group plants, animals, and other living things into sciencebased
  2. Explore how the groups of living things we have in the world have changed over long periods of time and appreciate that some living things in New Zealand are quite different from living things in other areas of the world.

Level 2 Social science

People and place influence

  • Understand how places influence people and people influence places

Cultural practices

  • Understand how cultural practices reflect and express people’s customs, traditions and values

Level 3 Social science

People using places

  • Understand how people view and use places differently

Resource decisions

  • Understand how people make decisions about access to and use of resources

Recording the past

  • Understand how people remember and record the past in different ways

Level 4 Social studies

Cultural heritage

  • Understand how people pass on and sustain culture and heritage

Community challenges

  • Understand how people participate individually and collectively in response to
    community challenges

Publication information

Written by Catherine Brimecombe, designed by Tim Mann Design, teaching advisor Jo Mann, project managed by Caroline Carter (Te Anau Area Office, DOC)

Published by the Department of Conservation. 

© Department of Conservation 2009

ISBN: 978-0-478-14605-9


Te Anau Office
Phone:   +64 3 249 0200
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   Te Anau Office
Lakefront Drive
Te Anau 9600
Postal Address:   PO Box 29
Te Anau 9640
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