The National Herbarium of Victoria and the Melbourne Gardens have a history of nearly 160 years of providing education, recreational and scientific research to Australia and the rest of the world. The Royal Botanic Gardens Education Service allows teachers and students to take advantage of the rich resources to enliven and enrich studies in education, biology, science, health science, geography, environment, horticulture, art and history.
All programs 1 hour and 45 minutes in duration.
10.15am to 12 noon
12.30pm to 2.15pm
Program prices (domestic)
$11.90 per student (includ. GST)
$214.20 per class, for small groups (Minimum Charge)
Teachers / Adults free
Bookings and information
Melbourne bookings and info
T 03 9252 2358
Cranbourne bookings and info
T 03 5990 2200
Health and Wellbeing in Nature NEW
Health and wellbeing is interconnected with time spent in natural environments. Being in nature reduces anger, fear, anxiety and stress and increases pleasant feelings. Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, it contributes to your physical wellbeing, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones.
In this specially developed new program, students are invited to explore the physical, mental and emotional benefits of spending time outside. Participants will brainstorm and discuss the role of healthy foods, physical exercise and spending time outside in cultivating health and wellbeing. Through practice of mindfulness exercises, participants will learn to nurture their own self-awareness and greater awareness of others and the natural world.
Landscapes for Learning
Suitable for students of landscape design, education and early childhood studies
Through the exploration of the plants and landscapes of the Ian Potter Foundation Children’s Garden, students discover how the development of an outdoor play and learning space for children can be centred around imaginative play. Topics discussed may include child participation in the planning process, development and application of a learning philosophy (pedagogy), plant selection, creation of space or rooms, the role of literature, children and the real work of a garden, links to VELS, discussion on the risk, challenges and perceived dangers of outdoor play, forging community partnerships and developing sustainable practises. Education students are engaged in the work and play of the garden. Students meet with members of the IPFCG design team.
Suitable for students of:
Cert II in Sustainable Water Management
Cert II in Water Industry Operations
Diploma of Sustainable Water and Catchement Management
This program examines the vital resource of water and how the Royal Botanic Gardens uses water saving and water quality improvement strategies. The program explores how to create sustainable habitats for indigenous plant and animal communities in a suburban environment. Students will participate in a variety of activities including ponding for fresh water invertebrates, observations of wildlife habitats and developing ideas for future sustainable resource use.
Behind the Scenes
Suitable for students of horticulture, land management and sustainability
Visit the National Herbarium of Victoria and the Gardens' Nursery Collections and discover some fascinating botanical specimens. Learn about the work that goes on in the Herbarium such as plant identification and its significance over the last 150 years. See how specimens are collected, prepared, documented and mounted. Meet Royal Botanic Gardens scientists and horticulturists Please note that no photographs can be taken in the Herbarium or Nursery area without prior arrangement.
Suitable for students of education, health and school community gardens
The basic skills of good gardening are taught during this hands-on program that explores water conservation, organic gardening methods, composting and worm farming. Students will consider ideas for designing or developing their own gardens. Meet the horticulturist in the Kitchen Garden.
Suitable for students of design and horticulture
The Royal Botanic Gardens has been a Melbourne icon for 160 years. Come and discover the design secrets of the Gardens and learn a little about its history through designers such as Guilfoyle and Mueller. Visit the new Ian Potter Foundation Children’s Garden and learn about the philosophy behind its design and why it is so popular. Meet the Royal Botanic Gardens Landscape Architect.
The Aboriginal Resources Trail
Suitable for students of land management, sustainability, art, education and history
The Aboriginal Resource Trail is designed to give students a greater understanding and respect for the local Koolin culture. Visit Long Island, where indigenous plant habitat has been returned, see remnant plants and understand the significance of Waa (the raven) and Birrarung (Yarra River). The Gardens also have more than 100 species of plants used by Aboriginal people in other parts of Australia. Experiences include making and using ochre paint, string making using cumbungi and a hands-on exploration of tools. The emphasis is on diversity and examining sustainable land practices used by Aboriginal people. Meet an indigenous guide.
Nature Play and Your Child
Suitable for students of design, childcare and education, as well as playgroup organisers
Find out how to make the most of gardens and other natural settings to stimulate your child's imagination, creativity, learning and enjoyment of the natural world. This workshop includes discussion about the value of free and structured play, hands-on experiences designed to support you in your role as a facilitator of nature play, and an exploration of the play potential of plants and landscapes using the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne. Please note: group bookings only, minimum 15 adults.
Suitable for students of veterinary science and human health
Come on a journey to discover the hidden power of plants and how they fight for survival in the face of constant attack from animals. Learn about the poisons that plants make in order to defend themselves and the effects these have on humans and other animals. Learn to recognise the features of poisonous plants, like those in the Solanaceae family. Visit the Herbarium and learn about its role in plant identification from the botanists who work there.