The vision is to utilise the knowledge possessed by wildlife professionals and expert amateurs as a source of local information for teachers and pupils. This also benefits the experts as more people observing wildlife means that more knowledge can be gained. For example, phenology is the study of periodic plant and animal life cycle events and how these are influenced by seasonal and interannual variations in climate. Recording sightings of the first appearance of plants and animals during the seasons is valuable information for wildlife professionals who are monitoring the affects of climate change.
The hope is that we can enthuse children and teachers to explore and utilise their local environment with the help of wildlife experts in Pembrokeshire. For example, teachers could encourage their pupils to search for wildlife on the weekend, to photograph it if possible and to identify it i.e. to become a “Nature Detective”. This results in a number of skills being developed such as observation and the ability to use an identification guide. The resulting material could be utilised in a number of ways e.g in art, science, history, numeracy etc. The teacher can then make a post of the pupil’s work to share with others. The existing Eco-Schools project could make us of this resource and contribute to it.
I am currently recruiting wildlife experts to provide multi-media content (text, images and video can be uploaded) so you will find high quality imagery and content to use in your lessons. Please get in touch with me with any requests and comments. I suggest that the site can be accessed by your school’s admin email plus a password. I will send an invite to become an author once you request this.