This is a sponsored post written as part of a partnership between NatureWorksEverywhere.org and We Are Teachers
We know that kids learn best when there’s a personal connection created between them and the curriculum. Hands-on learning through field trips provides unparalleled learning but the reality is that not all of us can take a school bus to a coral reef to learn about protecting our planet. Thankfully NatureWorksEverywhere.org is hosting The Coral Reefs of Palau: Nature’s Amazing Underwater Cities, a virtual field trip via YouTube that will take us to the coral reefs.
Scheduled for May 19 at Noon EST visiting Palau virtually will allow students to explore the diverse ecosystem of Palau’s coral reefs and the symbiotic relationships. Expert scientist, Marine Biologist Stephanie Wear will provide a deep dive to learn about one of the “seven underwater wonders of the world . Students will explore Palau’s many organisms, plus what endangers it and how people can help protect it while also forming an important emotional connection to environmental issues that are at the heart of The Nature Conservancy’s mission.
About The Coral Reefs of Palau: Nature’s Amazing Underwater Cities
Join the Nature Conservancy on a Virtual Field Trip to the Coral Reefs of Palau: a remote network of islands deep in the Pacific Ocean. Here, sharks snatch up smaller prey; decorator crabs apply bits of shell, algae, and sponge to their own backs for camouflage; and massive 2,000-pound sea cows graze. Our journey to the Coral Reefs will open students’ eyes to an amazing, interconnected ecosystem built on symbiosis and mutualism, where diverse organisms are designed to protect, clean, nourish, and even camouflage one another. In this underwater city, the coral supports its many “workers” and they, in turn, keep the coral healthy. Called “the medicine chests of the sea,” Coral Reefs provide ingredients that are leading to new lifesaving medications. They are also an astonishingly rich source of food for many species, including humans, and provide a perfect buffer to protect shorelines from erosion.
How to Participate in Wild The Coral Reefs of Palau: Nature’s Amazing Underwater Cities
Parents and teachers are welcome to join the free The Coral Reefs of Palau: Nature’s Amazing Underwater Cities YouTube video at 12:00 pm (EST) on May 19 2015. This 40 minute virtual field trip will help third through eighth graders better understand how the science and geography of this incredible underwater ecosystem.
How the Virtual Field Trip Will Work
NatureWorksEverywhere.org hosts multiple free virtual field trips each year. Their last field trip, Wild Biomes: From America’s Rainforest to America’s Desert was hosted as a G+ Hangout and made available via YouTube. Watching it can help you and your students get a feel for how it will work to participate via YouTube.
Information for Teaching Coral Reef Concepts to Students
If students could walk away with one piece of learning from The Coral Reefs of Palau: Nature’s Amazing Underwater Cities, they would understand that in the Coral Reefs, everything is interconnected—and this includes people. The Coral Reefs function like an undersea city, with every organism having an important role.
Key Concepts and Terms for Teachers
- Coral Reefs
- Complex communities
- Biological interactions
- Food webs
- Protection and conservation
The content of this virtual field trip is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards and the National Geography Standards.
To participate in The Coral Reefs of Palau: Nature’s Amazing Underwater Cities, register here to join the virtual field trip live on YouTube or available later on The Nature Works Everywhere YouTube channel.
This is a sponsored post written through a partnership with WeAreTeachers and NatureWorksEverywhere.org but all opinions are my own. Images courtesy of The Nature Conservancy.