It’s always good to keep pushing the boundaries and one constant with the BMRG board has been their commitment to schools and education.
Over the last 2 years, the BMRG have been collaborating with the global organisation, Mangrove Action Project, to adapt their Marvellous Mangroves resource guide for teachers for an Australian audience and curriculum.
Mangroves are an important part of the Wide Bay Burnett, lining our rivers and tidal creeks where they play a significant role in coastal protection buffering our communities from the impacts of severe storms and weather events, in fisheries productivity as important nursery areas and in water quality improvement filtering out sediments and removing nutrients to protect adjacent coral reefs and seagrass meadows.
The Marvellous Mangroves curriculum has been introduced into eleven countries worldwide and been used by over 1500 teachers and 250,000 students in the past 15 years.
Originally developed for the Caribbean region in 1999, it 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; Sinhala and integrated into the Sri Lanka national science curriculum; Portuguese and adapted for use in Brazil as part of their official school curriculum, and Mandarin for use in China where it has been introduced into three provinces. In 2013, it was introduced into Belize schools.
Marvellous Mangroves of Queensland has been adapted for use by year 4-8 teachers and students. The program was launched with a 2-day teacher professional development session held on 2-3 August 2014 delivered by educator, Martin Keeley, the program’s developer. Martin’s participation was supported by the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund.
The curriculum is extensive covering a broad range of topics from science to social sciences (geography, history, civics and citizenship), English and the arts in addition to two of the three key priorities set by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) - Sustainability and Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures.
In addition to the impressive 300-page resource guide (now available to download from the BMRG’s website), Marvellous Mangroves is supported with a class set of mangrove-themed costumes and an inflatable Mangrovia designed by visual artist Evelyn Roth to enhance the program in their own schools. Marvellous Mangroves will also be made available to over 300 schools through the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority’s Reef Guardian Schools Program.
The BMRG would like to acknowledge the following people for their invaluable contribution to the program’s development – Bob Anderson, Janet Barrett, Barry Bainbridge, Nev Capell, Raeleen Draper, Dr Norm Duke, Janeen James and Sherry O’Brien, with the assistance of the Australian Government.
For more information on Marvellous Mangroves and Mangrovia, please email firstname.lastname@example.org..au or call (07) 4181 2999.
Marvellous Mangroves is now available to download in a chapter by chapter format: