Marvelous Mangrove Curriculum
Image of Martin Keeley teaching the Curriculum in the field in China, 2011
MAP provides a reference resource for teachers and students to learn about how mangroves function and explore mangrove forests. The 300-page “Marvelous Mangroves in the Cayman Islands” was developed for the Caribbean region in 1999 and is now part of the local Cayman curriculum. It has since been adapted for the English-speaking Colombian Caribbean islands of San Andres and Providence; translated into Spanish and adapted for use in Colombia, Honduras, and Guatemala; translated and adapted for use in Indonesia; as well as translated into Sinhala and integrated into the Sri Lanka national science curriculum. Demand for the mangrove curriculum continues to grow throughout the world, including countries such as the Philippines, Suriname, The Dutch Antilles, Senegal, and Kenya. It has recently been translated into Portuguese and adapted for use in Brazil as part of their official school curriculum, and has been translated into Mandarin for use in China where it has been introduced into three provinces. It will be introduced into Belize schools in 2013. Work is also underway to adapt the curriculum for use in Australia – initially focusing on Queensland sate.
Throughout the tropical and sub-tropical world, mangroves have been destroyed in a number of ways. Of the original 36 to 38 million ha. – only about 15 million ha. remain. Because mangrove forests are facing heavy destructive pressures, it is important to embark on an extensive mangrove education program that will lead to the preservation of existing mangrove wetlands and restoration of those mangrove areas that have been degraded or destroyed by developments.
Children will be the decision makers in the future, so by involving them now in a learning program that awakens them to the importance of the mangroves, we will improve greatly the chances that they will work to conserve these mangroves in the future. Raising children’s’ awareness will also help reach their parents, other family members and those in their local communities with whom they communicate, and can pass along our conservation message. It is essential that this information be incorporated into the schools’ curriculum so that teachers’ are required to teach the program in their classrooms as part of their learning outcomes. In many locations world-wide the school and its teachers are the centre of the communities focused on mangroves.
MAP, working closely with local and regional NGOs and Education Ministries, plans to expand adaptation, translation and use of the curriculum throughout the Americas, Asia and Africa This will ensure a much wider and lasting awareness among coastal communities as to the vital importance of their mangroves and the need for their sustainable management and conservation. MAP’s teacher training workshops enable the concepts and application of the curriculum to continue to spread through both regions targeted for introduction and use of the Curriculum. This also involves establishing funding for the continuing publication of the teachers guide, and the establishment of the inter-active web site available to teachers and students alike.
The positive conservation impact of introducing the MAP Curriculum into more countries’ formal school systems can be measured by the numbers of schools and teachers using the Curriculum and the number of students being taught about mangroves with this Curriculum. To date more than 2,000 teachers and close to 200,000 students worldwide have used the Curriculum, and the enthusiasm and interest expressed by the teachers in using the program in their classes is inspiring.
MAP’s Mangrove Curriculum plants and nourishes the seeds of mangrove conservation in the minds of the children! MAP’s Mangrove Curriculum has already been introduced into eight countries worldwide including:
and next year sees its application in Belize, Australia, Suriname and the Dutch Antilles! Other nations currently showing interest include the USA, Panama, Senegal and the United Arab Emirates. The budget below is for the fits three countries combined
$ 170,000 Total
Preliminary adaptation work, translation for local use
Travel-two trips per year to each of 3 countries-6 trips
Three 1st base teacher training workshops
Three 2nd phase teacher trainings in classroom settings
Printing and Distributing 500 copies of Curriculum
Main Curriculum Coordination Team for one year
Project Phase: Under Way
Education, Environment, Science & Technology, Women & Children
Australia, Belize, Brazil, Cayman Islands, China, Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, Sri Lanka, Indonesia