Jemima Forbes

What’s the difference between a green iguana and a blue iguana? When was Pedro St. James built? Why was the Cimboco so important? There are a whole host of facts about Cayman that many kids, as well as adults, may not know. Luckily, the Cayman National Trust has decided to help answer these questions and more with its new educational placemats.

The placemats are part of an initiative that aims to teach children about the history, culture and biodiversity of the Cayman Islands in a dynamic and interactive way.


The set of four innovative paper placemats was created by employees at the Trust, and then a local designer was brought on board to help bring the illustrations and ideas to life. Each of the four designs highlights a different topic specific to Cayman: Birds and Trees, Heritage Heroes, Historic Buildings and Ships, and Blue Iguanas. The placemats feature a range of teaching tools including fact files, word searches, coloring tasks and maze games, which will help educate kids while keeping them entertained.

Education at the National Trust

The Cayman National Trust was established more than two decades ago and currently cares for 12 historic sites as well as nine of the Cayman Islands’ nature reserves. Education is at the center of its operation, with other projects including play groups, summer camps, monthly activity programs and regular talks with guest speakers. It also produces classroom resources and organizes field trips for schools to various heritage locations.

The Trust anticipates reaching thousands of children across all three islands with its placemat initiative. The placemats will be rolled out at restaurants nationwide, and the Trust is currently appealing for venues to get in touch if they would like to be part of this educational project. It is also seeking sponsorship, which will allow it to widen its reach with the placemats, as well as continue to provide other educational resources.

As stated by the Trust: “Our educational objective is to empower people of all ages, to preserve our natural and built heritage through public awareness and opportunities for hands on learning.”

The hope is that the placemats will help boost volunteer and membership numbers so that the Trust can keep funding its programs and sites across the Cayman Islands for future generations.

Keep your kids occupied when you next head to a local restaurant.

Get involved

As well as making kids more aware of Cayman’s diverse heritage, the mats also make a great distraction for families with young children enjoying a meal at one of Cayman’s many restaurants. Look out for them the next time you eat out; parents may just learn something new too!

For more information on how to get the National Trust educational placemats in your restaurant or to sponsor the initiative, email [email protected] or call 749-1126.


  1. That’s a brilliant idea , it would be very educational and entertaining and keeping families at the dinner table for more togetherness which I think is being ignored today , it would also help tourist learn about all the attraction of the Islands . All placemats should not be the same , but say three different ones , that way you’re not going over the same thing every time to prevent boredom .
    But made of paper , why not made of plastic with a wipeable surface, the dump don’t need to be bigger .

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