School children learn value of the world’s oceans

Public school children in the Cayman Islands are working on presentations to describe how humans interact with the ocean as part of the Ocean Literacy Programme.

The winners of the competition will get a class trip to the Central Caribbean Marine Institute’s Little Cayman Research Centre.

The schools must provide a visual and written class piece, describing humans’ interconnection with the ocean. The competition launched on 19 March with registration by 20 April. Judging was scheduled to take place on 22 May, in association with the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism.

The Ocean Literacy Programme, sponsored by KPMG, began with a teacher training programme in 2009 and combines different educational topics to help focus on the holistic role of the ocean and its impacts on everyday life.

“We are delighted to partner with the CCMI on the Ocean Literacy Programme. We recognise that it is essential to provide our children with a basic understanding of the importance of the ocean, especially here in Cayman,” said KPMG’s Anthony Cowell.

The KPMG Ocean Literacy Programme supports the development of teaching materials, teacher training and educational experiences for students, such as a recent John A. Cumber Primary School trip with Nautilus and CCMI. The Nautilus team provide a backdrop to teach ocean literacy and the semi-sub trip enabled the students to get close to the Cayman Islands underwater world without getting wet.

During Earth Week in April, CCMI also provided a Reef Series lecture, which complements the Ocean Literacy Programme, providing real-time updates to the current research projects undertaken at the Little Cayman Research Centre.

CCMI’s lab technician and scientist in residence, Emma Camp, provided a 20-minute presentation on ocean acidification, as well as an introduction to the effects of carbon dioxide absorption on the ocean and its impact. This is one of CCMI’s main research projects.

The Reef Lecture Series aims to update Cayman Islands residents on the research findings.

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