the next generation learns about nature

The idea for this post started when I received an invitation to an exhibition.


The Living Things Exhibition was held at the the local primary school that my grandsons attend. All the children in Grades 1 and 2 participated. The idea was to choose an animal, bird, fish or insect and create a diorama with information about it. The animal Sam chose was a pig.

Learning facts about the natural world is probably more important than ever in our urbanized world, damaged ecosystems and the extinction, and threatened extinction, of many species. Even more than information, what matters, I think, is to instil a sense of wonder and appreciation of the natural world, so that these children become the eco warriors of the future.


A few children chose Australian native animals but, not surprisingly, many chose large exotic mammals, such as leopards, rhinos, pandas, gorillas and giraffes. Some chose marine animals, such as catfish and sea turtles. Insects weren't featured much, although I did see a couple of butterflies.











The children wrote down some facts about their chosen animal. They described the reproductive process of each species. They noted their status, whether they are threatened or not. In Australia almost 1 in 3 of our endemic mammals are threatened. I hope the children realized that we humans are the worst and most common predators for many species.






 I wonder if any of these 6 and 7 year olds will decide to become vegetarian now.

Comments

  1. What a brilliant idea.
    And my vegetarian self applauds (despite becoming vegetarian for health rather than animalarian reasons). I haven't eaten meat for well over a decade now, and don't think I could again.

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    1. Yesterday I heard the word flexitarian. I'm like that - lots of the time I'm vegetarian, then I'm not.

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  2. Thank that teacher for making them aware!!!

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    1. It's a lovely school with lovely values.

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  3. An early introduction to nature - and the challenges that threaten it - is key to building aware and involved adults. Kudos to the teacher and the school, and the kids for their engagement! Coincidentally, another blogger, Anna at Flutter & Hum, raised the issue of how to interest young people in gardening and the natural environment last week. She received a lot of passionate responses.

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    1. I commented in Anna's blog, thanks for telling me about it. You wonder what today's kids' lives will be like in the future. I don't think they'll be snorkelling at the Barrier Reef, or if they will, it won't be nearly as colourful as it used to be.

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  4. Clever to do that diorama with the fish and the fisherman.
    And so encouraging to see children linked to nature.

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    1. thanks, Diana, your fauna was represented more than ours.

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  5. Children in this country too (England) are generally more interested in animals from Africa and India than they are in the creatures of our own towns and countryside. I can't decide if this is something natural or instilled. Maybe it's just that children's authors are generally more inspired by tigers than beetles or voles.

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    1. Interesting, I grew up with Beatrix Potter, African animals are not nearly as cute as Peter Rabbit.

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  6. Bother, I keep forgetting to mention . . . I have moved from the Dorset Coast to Halifax in West Yorkshire and with it the blog. New posts will be from 'Loose and Leafy in Halifax..' https://looseandleafyinhalifax.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. thanks for letting me know, Lucy.

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  7. These are some very artistic children. What a nice way to teach them about nature.

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    1. What I liked about it was the inclusiveness. Lots of the exhibits weren't brilliant artistically, but it didn't seem to matter.

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