Valentina Carminati, Field Bioregional Education Manager
Planet Drum Foundation
July 26, 2006
Our trip to La Cruz lookout in the center of Bahia was as enjoyable as always! It was a great day; the sun was shining and the sky was completely clear. Perfect weather conditions to admire the view of the Rio Chone estuary from up there. Kids could see the integration between land and water.
They comprehended what an estuary is: La Cruz is an excellent place to see how the sweet water of Rio Chone mixes with the salty water of the Pacific Ocean. I reminded them that the presence of such an estuary is critical for the survival of many native species (flora and fauna), which are dependent on the estuarine habitat in order to live and reproduce.
We also talked about mangroves, how important they are with respect to the food chain of the estuary and the coast and that you mostly find them at the boundaries of the islands or next to shrimp pools. I realized the majority of them had never seen mangroves, so I got an idea for the next week course plan.
Kids were left free to wonder around and appreciate the panorama for a while. Subsequently, considering it was going to be my birthday in a few days, we had a small party with a cake and soft drinks!
Today (Wednesday) we started the Art and Handicraft section of the Bioregional Education Program. I thought it was a better idea to go to the park to make our “works of art” rather then staying in a closed room and kids liked my suggestion. Plenty of stuff has been made; students worked hard!
I taught them easy techniques to weave nice key-holders. Kids worked with different kinds of seeds such as Pasquenca, Aboncillo and Acassia. They also saw how seeds are actually located on trees (in pods or covered by a thick skin which encloses a sticky liquid too).
The girls were oriented towards fine and aesthetically pleasant things while boys made bizarre stuff…but I recognized that all of them made the most of it! Next Monday we are going to create flowerpots by sticking seeds and colored paper on plastic bottles.
At the end of the class we discussed what their parents thought about the idea of going to Isla Corazon—the mangrove island in Rio Chone, on Saturday. Most of the kids got the okay from the parents and a few mums are going to come along too!! I know it will be quite demanding for me but luckily Cheo will come with us. More details about the trip will be in my next report!
Ciao Ciao. Valentina