Apia, Samoa – 18th – 21st April 2023: The Guardian Programme brought together teachers from selected district primary schools for a 4-day Training of Trainers Workshop at the Hotel Millenia conference room. The Guardian is an Experiential Environmental Educational Training initiative that was co-developed by Conservation International (CI) and partners including government ministries, civil societies and Samoa based crop agencies in 2018. The programme aims to improve the environmental literacy of primary school students as a tool for community resilience to the impacts of climate change. The seven (7) Guardians modules focusing on 5 themes have been further assessed by the MESC to ensure alignment to the Major Learning Outcomes of the Science, Social Studies and Language subjects within Samoa’s National School Curriculum. The Guardians has covered six districts, reaching over 1000 primary school students since inception.
Conservation International has secured funds under the New Zealand funded Manaaki Project to deliver the Guardians to five more districts in Samoa.
The Guardians target group are Year 7 Primary school students whose ages range between 10 to 12 years. The Guardians educational programme was co-developed under five learning themes with 7 modules including:
- Wise Fisher (1 module)
- Coral Champion (2 modules)
- Tree Guardian (1 module)
- Trash Star (1 module)
- Samoan Voyager (2 module)
The teaching of these modules applies the pedagogy approach to teaching which promotes experiential learning through hands on activities on site. Activities will include visits to mangrove areas and snorkeling in the lagoon where impacts to the environment from human induced activities and extreme climatic events are more prevalent.
CI has been working with the Ministry of Education Sports and Culture (MESC) and partners including MNRE, MAF and SVS since July 2022 to identify districts for the Guardians and have confirmed Palauli and Faasaleleaga for Savaii for 2023 and Anoamaa, Sagaga and one school from the urban area for 2024. The dates scheduled for Palauli and Faasaleleaga 2 are 12-16 June and 26-30 June.
The training of Trainers Workshop (ToT) scheduled from the 18th to the 21st of April provides an opportunity for primary school teachers from the selected districts to familiarize themselves with experiential teaching methods that will be used to deliver the Guardian training modules. The ToT workshop is led by CI-Samoa staff with assistance and guidance from Mrs Maria Sapatu Kennar, an APCAN coordinator that was involved in the development of the Guardians Programme.
We would like to acknowledge the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade for their support to the Guardians through the Manaaki Project and the Australia Pacific Climate Alumni Network for allowing Mrs Maria Sapatu-Kennar to assist with the preparation of materials for the Guardians ToT Workshop. Last but not least, we sincerely appreciate the role of the Ministry of Education Sports and Culture in organizing the selected district primary school teachers and School Support Advisors to attend the ToT workshop.
About Conservation International
Conservation International is a non-government organization that works to spotlight and secure the critical benefits that nature provides for humanity. The non-profit has worked in the Pacific Islands region for more than 20 years. Through science, policy, fieldwork and finance, we spotlight and secure the most important places in nature for the climate, for biodiversity and for people. With offices in 30 countries and projects in more than 100 countries, Conservation International partners with governments, companies, civil society, Indigenous peoples and local communities to help people and nature thrive together. Go to Conservation.org for more, and follow our work on Conservation News, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
For more information, please contact:
- Matai’a Ueta Faasili, Manaaki Project Manager firstname.lastname@example.org (+685 21593)
Ministry of Education Sports and Culture