Just Doing It! - A Catered Galveston Bay Ecosystem Education Program


Jan. 24, 2007


Hayden, MJ
Snell, S

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Galveston Bay Estuary Program


Bay and Island Adventures works like a catering service. It brings students and teachers a prepared banquet of education about Galveston Bay area ecosystems, complete with hands-on teaching modules, all necessary equipment and supplies and, most-importantly, enough trained staff to serve it up in style! This presentation discusses the need to "cater" education if we wish to ensure future implementation of the Galveston Bay Plan and offers guidance for developing such a full-service program. Presenters offer techniques for recruiting and training volunteers, negotiating with busy teachers, keeping teacher and student interest high, and avoiding pitfalls. Elements of the four-year-old program include: 1) "Treasures of the Bay," a four-day naturalist class for teachers, 2) six 1-hour interactive in-school teaching modules - Water, Galveston Bay, Wetlands, Coastal Prairie, Birds and Other Wildlife, Gulf of Mexico; 3) an after-school 20-member naturalist club chock full of activities that build on the classroom modules; 4) five club fieldtrips for hands-on get-wet exploration of area ecosystems and an all-day spring class fieldtrip to Galveston Island State Park for each grade level; 5) "Camp Wild," summer day camp for 60 4th and 5th graders. Bay and Island Adventures is currently provided at two elementary schools and various program elements are provided at several others. The program is managed and conducted by a dedicated cadre of volunteers of the sponsoring organizations, Friends of Galveston Island State Park and Galveston Bay Area Chapter-Texas Master Naturalists. It is funded by these organizations and through donations and grants they have acquired.




education tools, environmental education