Giant Grass update

Week 7

This week is our most exciting yet. We are beginning the building stage of our installation.

The veranda of the visual art room was set up as a studio that incorporated, measuring and sawing lengths of bamboo and painting the ends that will be buried underground with a rubber bitumen paint to protect the bamboo from rotting.

Teams from each home group were formed and took on the responsibility for the tasks in each station. These were overseen by parent helpers, Deb, the music resident, Munir (the artist in residence) and myself.


This is the first station, the measuring station. Munir is explaining the process of measuring the lengths for stage one of our construction…. the spiral. It is important to cut the bamboo on top pof the node, to ensure that tit is protected from water and rot.

The second station involved cutting the measured lengths of bamboo…

OHS protective measures included students wearing masks, goggles and gloves.

The third station involved measuring the base of the cut lengths of bamboo in preparation for the final stage of painting:


Finally, the last station involved painting the measured section with the rubberised bitumen paint.

The students then created their own final station, the cleaning of the bamboo. This was a station that popped up unexpectedly, and was initiated by the students,   demonstrating their commitment to the project and care and attention to detail when working.

The cleaning station involved cleaning the painted bamboo of any dirt or paint marks that had unexpectedly been dropped.

The product of day one of making and creating our new playground space. Designed by students and built by students.

It was a day of intense production and activity, with each student focussed and on task.

It was a wonderful example of collaborative creative venture; of how small tasks, carefully and lovingly undertaken by many, can produce amazing results.

Here are some student reflections from the day:

With the measuring we had to be precise. It was so good to have a clear process to follow.

It was difficult at some stations and easy at other stations. We had to measure very carefully. It would have been too easy to make a mistake.

Using the saw seemed easy at first but when we used it, we realised that it was easy to pull back and challenging to push forward.

When we learnt how to saw and about how to construct and build- it was a lifetime experience.

Munir helped us so much to learn about skills in sawing and measuring and painting- it was so good to have his help!

Today seemed like a different day! It was so good to experience all the building out of natural materials. It is hard to build and make something like this! We are so lucky! 

Measuring past the nodes on the bamboo was really important. We wall worked so hard and at different stations and it sometimes felt we were the PHPS Bamboo Specialists Playground Company. We are really proud of this!

I liked that we were able to choose from a range of things to do. These things will prepare us for skills we will use later in life.

Today was one of the most wonderful experiences of my life! WOW!

I’ve never had this much fun making and creating before. I’ve never seen the class so excited!

Next week we will endeavour to dig the spiral trench and install the bamboo pieces, while also focussing on creating bamboo instruments to hang on the main structure.

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