As health measures from the pandemic evolve, we have been slowly recieving a few volunteers to plant trees in one of our reforestation areas. We have been particularly careful to invite family members, especially if they have children, so they can have an opportunity to be outdoors, learn about their environment, and get their hands in the ground.
We teach them about soil health with a little experiment comparing different samples, and explain the interdependence between the soil, the plants, and the animals, and how that keeps the sky clean and healthy too!
Both in the neighboring areas of SINAL, as well as in Rio, most families live in apartment complexes and other types of infrastructure without gardens for the families to safely spend some time outside. We have been very happy to provide a safe space for families to get back in touch with the environment!
Last report, we told you the story of the American School of Rio de Janeiro's project to teach children online about sustainability based on the day-to-day life at Sinal do Vale. The project was such a success, that Sinal do Vale has been working on the creation of its own online platform -this time in portuguese- to support teachers of the third grade in public schools of the area.
With 7 knowledge stations with a video clip, a quiz and activities, the platform is designed for children to explore SINAL online, and carry out experiments at home with materials they can easily find. The launch will roll out the next school year, beginning in March 2021. For now, almost 500 schools in the Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Petrópolis areas are included in the launch plan!
A big thank you to all our donors who have supported us particularly during this hard time - your generous donations have helped us adapt and offer relevant solutions to keep up our work as environmental educators!
This year has been quite different for all of us. As the pandemic has unfolded, we all have had to look for new ways of sharing, learning, working and relaxing. Our environmental education program has not been the exception, since SINAL has had to close its doors and greatly reduce the flow of people visiting.
We turned to the online world to stay active! earlier this year, we embarked on a pilot project with teachers from the American School of Rio de Janeiro to create a platform sharing videos, live chats and DIY activities centered around sustainability and the farm life at SINAL. Luckily, these were so popular that we are happy to announce we are taking it to the next level!
SINAL will begin producing informative capsules about agroecology, bioconstruction, reforestation, recycled art and other topics taking advantage of the many prototypes running in campus, as well as the diversity of people we have around! with stories from all our coordinators coming from different parts of Brazil and the world, we are excited to show how we knit a tight community that sources well-being and innovation through diversity and a harmonic relationship with nature. These will be part of the curriculum of local schools!
A big thank you to our donors for helping us keep our education program going, especially during these hard times. Stay tuned to see our progress, we will begin shooting in the coming months!
This year has had an unusual start for all of us - as we stay put for quarantine, we are working on detailing our work for this school year with two new schools! Last year we focused mostly on practical environmental learning journeys with practical activities such as trails and treasure hunts, a regenerative culinary workshop and mindfulness excercises. This year we are adding a new component to our curriculum: art therapy!
Our pedagoge and resident art coordinator have been taking lessons on art therapy and artistic expression to formulate a workshop for the children to connect with nature and express the feeling through painting, mosaic and modelling. We will focus on using natural and recycled elements to show children how their creative outlet can beautify spaces and care for their environment.
Previously, we had worked with children of the community decorating public spaces such as plazas, school murals and other infrastructure - this has proven to be a children's favorite so it was naturally time to incorporate it to our in-campus learning journeys!
We will keep you posted as things go back to normal and we can begin our work. In the mean time, stay safe and as always, we extend you a sincere thank you for your support!
This year, worked with the Mariana Nunes municipal school in the neighboring community of Barreiro. Over the course of the semester, we worked with the honor roll students with visits to the school teaching about the Atlantic Rainforest and conservation of its biodiversity, through a series of games and excercises such as theater of the oppressed.
This december, we closed the project receiving the 30 student class for an environmental learning journey where we did everything from a tour of our prototypes, to meditation and art! The children got to understand the cycle of nature with our interactive your in the organic garden, chicken coup, tree nursery and cuisine workshop. As always, one of the big favorites of the day was playing treasure hunt in the bamboo forest.
We hope to work with the school again next year! Thank you to our donors that helped us give a new perspective to the local children of their environment.
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