At the ALERT Education Centre in Gweru, students from Mkoba 4 and Takunda Primary Schools have been learning about the Global Village that they are part of. The children were divided into groups and assigned project volunteers, representing Sweden, Norway, Austria, Australia, Brazil, Italy and Denmark. The volunteers gave a presentation to their group about the wildlife, geography, social life, climate, economy, education systems, and politics of their home country. The children were encouraged to ask questions to discover more about the country, so that they could then present to their fellow students what they had learned.
The students were excited to learn a few words in foreign languages. They honoured the volunteers by giving them Shona names and totems (an object such as an animal or plant that serves as the emblem of a family or clan, and often as a reminder of its ancestry).
Also this month, students new to the Conservation Education course were introduced to ALERT; what it stands for and the work it does. Key issues were covered, including the definition of conservation, the importance of wildlife, and the principle threats to its existence. As homework, the students were given two short research assignments on the importance of wildlife and the poaching of elephants. These topics were designed to promote discussion between the students themselves, and also with parents/guardians and other adults. Teaching staff from both schools have expressed their approval of research being introduced into the syllabus to improve the children’s ability to consider and access a variety of resources to gather information.
Jucélia Valencia from Brazil is currently interning with ALERT at the AEC in Conservation Education. She is proving to be a huge asset to the team by assisting with structuring lessons and devising new, enjoyable ways to demonstrate the lesson’s themes and improve the students' learning.
Recently, one of the students at the AEC mentioned that his favourite animal was a horse, but that he had never seen one. It was quickly arranged with the Antelope Park stables to bring a horse to the next lesson at the AEC, providing the children with an opportunity to learn about horses, as well as experience riding one. Click to learn more about our Equine Management internship.
About ALERT Education Centres (AEC)
Conservation Education is one aspect of the work of our ALERT Education Centres. The AEC operations at Livingstone (Zambia), Victoria Falls and Antelope Park (Zimbabwe) are all aimed at supporting the formal education system by offering extra-curricular activities to enhance student learning, and assisting with access to education for vulnerable students. Current programs include the provision of classes in conservation education, basic life skills, and English literacy. In addition, we provide funding to pay the fees of vulnerable students to take part in education from pre-school to university level, and fully funded internship and facilitated research placements for university level students. Future programmes will incorporate classes in numeracy, health & nutrition, physical education and business studies/entrepreneurship, as well as a variety of vocational training. The AEC is operated in association with Coventry University (UK), Midlands State University (Zimbabwe) and Copperbelt University (Zambia), and with the assistance of David Brackstone of John Taylor High School (UK). The first AEC, at Antelope Park, was opened in 2012 by the then Zimbabwe Minister of Education, Mr. David Coltart.
Join us at the AEC
ALERT offers a Conservation Education internship for those keen to gain hands-on teaching experience, while contributing to the protection and preservation of Africa’s wildlife. Interns will help in preparing and delivering lessons both in the classroom and on field trips. The syllabus encompasses environmental conservation, ecology and biodiversity, sustainability, and wildlife ecology and management. If you are interested in an internship at the AEC at Antelope Park click here full details.
Support the AEC
If you would like to support the activities of our AEC operations please click here.