Teach Through Educational Travel: Ayers Rock in the Australian Outback
- The aboriginal people, one of the oldest societies on the planet, have looked after this landscape for tens of thousands of years. The rocks in this area are covered with ancient aboriginal art, which was used as a form of storytelling. Visitors can see some of the aboriginal art, as can you, thanks to the internet. Take a look at some of the art that has been preserved. How did the ancient aborigines represent and make sense of their world?
- Ayers Rock is said to be the largest monolith in the world. However, some dispute that fact. Is Ayers Rock a monolith, or is it part of an underground rock formation? How was it formed? Why is it made of Arkose Sandstone, when there is none other nearby? And what about the strange honeycomb weathering of the rock? Read up on this geological issue. What do you think?
- Now, for fun, imagine yourself landing here from outer space. What does this strange landscape suggest to you? Take a look at Ayers Rock in this video and then try to envision a world that looks like this.
- Lastly, do you think you could climb this rock? And if you made it, how about getting down? Watch this video and see if you could do it. What is it about enormous natural structures that make humans want to summit?