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Teachers Learn about Protecting Marine Biodiversity

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Teachers Learn about Protecting Marine Biodiversity

 

 
 

Teachers Learn about Protecting Marine Biodiversity

 
10/07/2024

Dr Nóirín Burke joins Dr. Maria Vittoria Marra during the delivery of the Marine Institute’s Explorers Education Programme teachers training course held in Galway, where the teachers got to learn about protecting Ireland’s seashore biodiversity. Photo Cushla Dromgool Regan.More than 60 teachers in Galway, Kerry, West Cork, and Waterford recently completed the Marine Institute Explorer’s Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Teachers Training Summer Courses. The Explorers team introduced the teaching of marine themes in Primary schools, including how to protect Ireland’s marine biodiversity starting at the seashore.

Patricia Orme, Corporate Services Director, Marine Institute, said that she “is delighted to see so many teachers from all over the country taking part in the Explorers CPD courses”.  

“These courses are among some of the key activities the Explorers team are involved in that support Ireland’s national biodiversity plan. With nearly half of Ireland’s population living within 5km of the coast, it is important that we give teachers and children the opportunity to learn about our marine biodiversity – particularly our seashore habitats, plants and animal species,” Ms Orme said.

As part of the Explorers training course, teachers spent time examining the teaching of marine biodiversity through cross-curricular activities from the primary school curriculum, including the sciences, environmental awareness, maths, geography, language and arts.

Dr Nóirín Burke, Explorers Education Programme Manager, said she was delighted with the impact and reach of this year’s courses: “Providing teachers with practical experiences on the shore and bringing the shore into the classroom makes these courses special.  

The Explorers teams and teachers visited seven beaches where they enjoyed learning about being active citizens, through beach cleans, collecting data and taking photos of marine species at Ballyloughane Strand, Rinville Bay and Traught Beach in Galway, Waterville in Kerry, Red Strand and Ballingalla in Cork, and Tramore beach in Waterford.”

Throughout the course, a range of animals, including crabs, fish, gastropod and bivalve shellfish, worms, starfish, anemones, and many types of seaweeds, were identified. Some of the species were photographed, and the teachers submitted their data to the National Biodiversity Data Centre.  

“The week was filled with creativity with teachers participating in activities where they produced songs, stories and wrote poems about the shore. They enjoyed interactive games and activities, being creative using recycled items from the shore in the arts, and introducing wellness and well-being as part of the class activities while outdoors.

We want to thank all those involved in the teachers CPD training for their help sharing the importance of learning about our ocean,” Dr Burke added.

While practical courses for 2024 are now finished, teachers on their summer break can still take part in the Explorers Education Programme through an online course with Mayo Education Support Centre, which is open until 16th of August.

The Explorers Education Programme is funded by the Marine Institute and is managed and delivered by the Explorers Team of Camden Education, Galway Atlantaquaria, SeashoreKids, Oceanics Surf School, Old Cork Waterworks Experience, Sea Synergy, and Leave no Trace-Ireland.

For further information see www.explorers.ie

 

Photo caption:
Dr Nóirín Burke joins Dr. Maria Vittoria Marra during the delivery of the Marine Institute’s Explorers Education Programme teachers training course held in Galway, where the teachers got to learn about protecting Ireland’s seashore biodiversity. Photo Cushla Dromgool Regan.

 

 
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