Good Practices in Education – Examples from International Ocean Literacy
Updated: Apr 16
The afternoon session of the IOC-UNESCO International Ocean Literacy conference was split into two-panel sessions focusing upon good practices in Formal and Non-formal education. These were chaired by Fiona Couch, Marine Biological Association and Peter Tuddenham, College of Exploration. Both panel sessions were incredibly insightful, I found it fascinating what other programmes, organisations and initiatives are being conducted across the globe, each incredibly different but all with the same common goal – Ocean Literacy, Marine Science awareness and a desire to improve the current detrimental state of the Ocean. I am now going to highlight the core elements that stood out to me that I feel resonate or could be applied to Sail Training. For each case study, I have identified what new aspects I ascertained, therefore identifying the list of new discoveries reduces for each one.
Good Practices in Formal Education
Janet Stalker, Program Director, Ocean School (Canada)
Inquiry based learning drives critical thinking
To foster an ocean connection a person needs to feel a relevance to them
Be mindful of technological accessibility
Budget time and money for marketing
Got to work with formal educators, by having champions within a school system, they will promote from within for you.
Shift Environmental Education to include the Ocean
Use a ‘Bottom Up’ approach – taylor initiatives to the needs of the local level.
Kertin Forsberg, Director, Plantea Oceano (Peru)
Identify the needs of local teachers to assess and devise goals
Develop a framework that works over time.
Include teachers in your network
Capacity building, training and leadership are vital.
Connect your strategies to the people you are aiming for (remembering that participatory strategies are crucial)
Bridge gaps – both socially and within your market
To change awareness and encourage enterprise that will have a positive environmental impact, you need long term commitment, time, and effort.
Educate for Sustainable development
Mohammed Muslem Uddin, Founder, Blue Green Foundation (Bangladesh)
Think about how you can go further with education
Consider both academic and/ or vocational – which works best for what you are trying to achieve
Together we can go further (Collaborate!!) to make a change and a greater impact
Mascha Stoobant, Distretto Ligure Technologie Marine (Italy)
Promote citizen projects that follow participants from 5-14 years old
For Ocean Citizens to develop, they need to learn from a young age to instinctively manage behaviour in an Ocean Literate way
Include early warning and monitoring tools
You could have a positive impact and influence their decisions in life from as young as 4-5 years old.
Good Practices in Non-Formal Education
Antidia Citores, Surfrider (Belguim)
Collaborate with schools when training the trainer
Incorporate pedagogical tools into education programmes
Be inventive with resource materials, use infographics, video, create online documentaries and exhibitions, generate tutorials.
Severine Vasselin, Watertrek (France, UK)
People protect what they teach, know and love
Aim to connect to foster understanding
Sandro Carniel, CNR ISMAR (Italy)
Encourage long term ecological research for citizens
Summer schools for both students and teachers is important
Micheal Palmgren, SEA-U Marint Kunskapscenter (Sweden)
Generate a passion for inclusion
Sadly, I had to miss the presentation by Russell Stevens, Head of Education, Two Oceans Aquarium (South Africa) and Maria de los Angeles Serrano Jerez, National Aquarium (Cuba).
These sessions lead into a series of breakout groups to discuss priority areas of action for formal and non-formal education, reporting back to rest of the delegates in turn, feeding into the IOC-UNESCO three year action plan for Ocean Literacy in preparation for the 2020 Oceans conference.
Once the official proceeding for day one concluded, I attended the Special event arranged for the delegation. This was co-organised by the Italian Navy. We attended the Venice Arsenal, home of the Instituto di Studi Militari Maritimi (Naval Staff College). Here, we were privileged to be presented with two sessions. The first by Roberta Ivaldi and Maurizio Demarte, focusing upon the “Italian Hydrographic Institute and Ocean Literacy: from High North to South Pole we promote the knowledge of the Sea”. The second was presented by Franco Borgogno “A sea of plastics, expedition in the Artic through the Northwest Passage”. These were followed by an excellent buffet and wine supper, at the Naval Staff College. I must say, the hospitality of the Italian Navy that evening was impeccable, and it was evident the evening was enjoyed by all who attended.