The world population is getting everyday further away from the natural world and from its cycles. That means that we are getting distant from reality and thus, certain values and foundations that have been always taken for granted, start now to fall into disuse and into oblivion. As such, the development and support of activities for kids and adults based on environmental education, understanding and reconnecting with nature, are of increasing importance in our society. Nature is not only indispensable for our survival and subsistence, but it is also one of the main sources for our personal well-being. Based on this ideology, over the last months, Futurismo has been developing several activities together with one of the schools of Ponta Delgada. We would like to ensure that some of these values on environmental concern and awareness continue to gain shape and increasing presence and importance in the daily life of these little persons. They are the future! With this program, we aim to increase the regularity and diversity of the environmental education within the curricular program of the regional schools. We aim to develop pedagogical and fun tools that awake curiosity, environmental awareness and teamwork spirit on these children.
During these educational activities, we have already shared knowledge and a lot more ideas are about to be expressed! All together, we learnt and shared ideas about the rich biodiversity of the Azorean archipelago, with a greater emphasis on the marine mammals, which, like us, also rely on ocean resources to survive; and on the bird species that nest and live here and/or just passing by for a limited period among their migrations. We will explore as well the richness and complexity of the terrestrial environment in São Miguel, introducing the native vegetation with the opportunity to explore in situ by themselves. We believe that these charismatic species and these incredible landscapes will help to awake a sense of active concern for Nature and the Ocean.
We also introduce a small sample of the whaling history of the archipelago, showing the children the hard reality that was present here not so long ago, and how important was the whaling (and nowadays the whale watching!) for the survival of the islanders.
Another important topic we explore with the kids is the threats that the natural environment is facing nowadays: overfishing, pollution, plastic, etc. We (humans) are directly or indirectly responsible for great part of them. We try to encourage them to reduce their plastic dependency, to reject what they don’t need, to re-use materials in original ways, to recycle, … We address also the theme of the water: essential and finite! We will show the water cycle through small games, emphasizing its finitude, how lucky we are for still having access to it, and how easily it can be polluted and gone. To sum up, we would like to encourage them to live a more sustainable life! We make sure to introduce some simple and creative tips, solutions and alternatives for these daily problems. We all should act individually, because together we can make the difference. Teamwork will succeed in these global battles!
This educational program was born thanks to the love and care that all the Futurismo’s family nourishes to this archipelago and to all its patrimony, and the will to share and support social development within our nearest reality!
Maria Fonseca, 2019