The Kouprey Express Environmental Education Project provides environmental educational outreach and extension activities to teachers, schoolchildren, and communities living around protected areas. Activities are based on teacher workshop, teaching directly by Kouprey Express staff to students, conducting community night show, and organizing Phnom Tamao visits. These are all aimed to increase environmental awareness and promote conservation of Cambodian wildlife. To reach this aim, the KE staff provides training to teachers on Environmental Education Materials based on six modules such as weather, water & sanitation, waste & sanitation, energy, conservation & biodiversity, and livelihood to the target schools in Koh Kong province.
Teacher Capacity Building
During the summer holidays when schools are not in session – a 3-month period from July to October – the KE staff focused on capacity building and training. This includes English lessons to increase their English skills at the Australian Centre for Education (ACE), the top English school in Cambodia, as well as computer lessons on Access, Photoshop, and Excel at Asia Euro University. These classes will finish at the end of September, just in time for the new school year to begin in Koh Kong.
Developing New Lessons
Historically, the KE staff use environment flip charts to teach teachers and students. To expand the project, and add more concepts about Cambodia’s endangered species to increase awareness of those species, the threats facing them, and promote the wildlife rescue hotline number through species-speicifc lesson plans.
The species-specific lessons focus on Asian Elephants, apes, pangolins, tigers, bears, and reptiles. The team will provide lessons that include information on the species’ physical characteristics, habitats, threats, how to conserve them, and have a Question & Answer element as well. Two games are also created which accompany each lesson: My Home and Biodiversity games.
New Learning Games for Students
Students are divided into groups and share pieces of paper with an animal’s name written on it. We then hide the animal’s picture somewhere in the room/location and students are given 5 minutes to search for the animal’s picture which matches the sheet of paper. Who matches it fastest is the winner.
My Home Game (similar to dodge ball)
Students are divided into three groups: group one are trees, group two are animals, and two individuals are hunters. The tree group stands around the animal group, which is standing in the circle while the hunters try to hunt animals by throwing the ball from outside the circle line. The job of the trees is to help protect the animals from the hunters. If the animals can dodge the ball and avoid being hit, the animals are the winner, but if they get hit, the hunters are the winner. Play is 5 minutes.
Planning Phnom Tamao Visit
The new schools in the first half of 2011 proved to be difficult to reach for large buses so PTWRC field trips have not been as many as we hoped. Instead, the team is interested in coordinating with local orphanages and schools in Phnom Penh. The trip(s) will hopefully happen in early September.
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Communications and Finance Field Liaison