Back to school in Tanzania thanks to Ocean Senses
NEWS: Thanks to the funding Strategiske Midler (Faculty of Law, UiT The Arctic University of Norway), the project Ocean Sense(s). A multisensory ocean toolkit for all (2021-2022) had its first implementation in the Ruvuma Region, Tanzania.
In the months of August and September, with the help of Agnes Haule, our project coordinator in Tanzania, we managed to sponsor the education of five school pupils (age 8-19), providing them with books materials, toiletries and school fees for a year. At the pupils' request, we also supported the creation of beautiful ECO_CARE school bags, printed and sewn in Songea by our creative staff. In addition, we started disseminating our audio version of the English Booklet (ECO_CARE Activity Booklet created by Aoife Cummins and Alexa Bennett) to three of our educational institutions located in Songea, Matimira and the Nyasa District. We are also in the process of enriching the pupils’ learning toolkit with learning props and materials developed in coordination with the Akma Ocean Senses research team.
Figure 1 The OCEAN SENSE(S) ECO_CARE school bag with school supplies, illustrated by Camilla Haule, 2022.
SOME INFO ABOUT THE PROJECT FUNDED BY STRATEGISKE MIDLER:
Coordinated by Giuliana Panieri (Department of Geosciences and CAGE, UiT The Arctic University of Norway), Margherita Paola Poto, and Giulia Parola, the project develops complementary and additional outreach activities of the main NRC-funded project Akma (https://en.uit.no/project/akma), as well as of the project ECO_CARE.
The aim of the project is to provide a toolkit, co-created by members of both project teams, for dissemination and implementation research in connection with the sustainability goals (water protection, innovation, climate action, education for all) under the umbrella of the Agenda 2030. The toolkit includes lessons on the seabed habitats, learning props and experiential activities developed in connection with the research conducted on the RV Kronprins Haakon (KPH) in 2022. The toolkit's development involves scientists (geology, biology, law), researchers and education experts.
The target groups for the toolkit are school pupils (age range: 6-18 years) from Italy, Norway, Brazil and Tanzania. In particular, the Strategiske Midler funding 2022 supports research activities connected to 5 classes from the Chiquitano villages in Mato Grosso, Brazil (coordinator: G. Parola), and pupils from different school institutions in the Ruvuma Region, Tanzania (coordinator A. Haule).
The co-created process of developing the toolkit, disseminating, and implementing research includes: 1. a series of consultations on the toolkit content with the project partners; 2. one-on-one meetings with community organizations, 3. an expedition of the Kronprins Håkon in May 2022 (11-23 May) with team members from Akma II, ECO_CARE and representatives of the target groups (researchers and teachers)
Expected project results:
didactic materials (an illustrated handbook on the ocean experience for school pupils 6-18 years, 3D seabed and foraminifera models printed on sustainable materials, water samples, taste-and-odor testing samples, videos with recorded sea-sounds) n. 1-2 peer-reviewed interdisciplinary co-authored publications n. 2 outreach activities with HE institutions during the expedition (Brazil and Tanzania) kick-off and final seminars organized in cooperation with the partnered institutions (respectively: in May and in autumn 2022)
We are delighted to have already achieved so many of the project results (a press release on the dissemination work in Mato Grosso and of our interdisciplinary publications will soon follow!) and we look forward to being continuously inspired by our project partners in co-creating research results that are meaningful for education and training purposes.
Figure 2 Some of the school pupils benefiting from the educational program developed by Ocean Senses ECO_CARE, Ruvuma Region, Tanzania, September 2022.