In my experience, teachers love free stuff.
Tonight after school, my co-planning partner (Maria, the teacher next door) and I scored well on the free stuff factor. We had signed up for a free workshop for primary school teachers on Coastal Biodiversity held as part of the Geography Teacher's Association Conference. We thought that we'd get some relevant information and teaching ideas to tie in with our inquiry unit "Can We Really Make A Difference?" that is using the Port River dolphins as a way to cover parts of our Science and SOSE (Studies Of Society & Environment) curriculum. In fact, we were almost considering not turning up as we've been pretty busy and have a whole day double class excursion on the go for tomorrow.
But we went.
What did we get?
- A conference goodie bag for no cost that included a couple of sports drink bottles (great for the boys), a coffee mug (teachers can never have enough of these), nice pens, extra stationery, dolphin stickers etc.
- A presentation from Shanelle Palmer, Environmental Education Officer for the Department of Environment and Heritage.
- An excellent draft curriculum pack dealing with the South Australian marine environment that links in beautifully with the way my school delivers learning - tuning in activities, web resources etc.
- Other freebies like environmental posters, eco-icon postcards, a jigsaw puzzle and ....
- ... we got to meet Gavin.
Gavin is a leafy sea dragon, a unique species of sea creature only found here in South Australia. The leafy sea dragon is our official marine emblem. Gavin is the star of an animated film that teaches students (and others) about the marine diversity of this state in an entertaining but informative way. Gavin travels from his home under the jetty at Rapid Bay and travels through the eight identified marine coastal regions, meeting the identified eco-icons along the way. We got to see the film and take our own copy of the DVD with us.
Image screengrab for fair use review purposes.
Real leafy sea dragon image courtesy of SouthOz - http://www.flickr.com/photos/southoz/237624479/
I think Gavin could be very useful in my classroom.