YEAR LEVEL 5 – 6, Group Size 15, Duration up to 1.5 hours



Details of Activity

This activity is based on the true story of “Old Tom”, who used to live by himself down in the mangroves near the HBEEC on his old fishing boat beached high and dry, for 21 years until 2001, when he was forced to move by the government of the day. Legend has it that he was in fact quite rich, and had buried his “treasure” somewhere nearby. Students are given a series of team challenges, and with each success are rewarded with parts of the clue to finding the treasure. This is normally done on the second day, or after the students have tried the challenges, with a few new challenges thrown in depending on the group. They eventually, if successful, find a map and proceed to the site where Tom’s boat used to be to hopefully find the treasure.

Learning Intent

  • Students will work together as a team to solve the challenges, and in doing so, will
  • Develop strategies to help solve problems encountered in activities.
  • Work independently and perform roles within a team.
  • Identify qualities that make a good team.      
  • Value the role of mangroves and natural coastal ecosystems in maintaining biodiversity.


  • Develop self-discipline and set goals
  • Become confident, resilient and adaptable

Social Management

  • Communicate Effectively
  • Work Collaboratively
  • Make Decisions
  • Develop Leadership Skills