Alongside the research and other work I do with Birds Korea, I am also an elementary school teacher. In support of what we do at Birds Korea, my co-teachers and school principal gave me an opportunity to design our English winter camp with an eco theme.
Camp students were 3rd and 4th graders, and remarkably brilliant. They were very excited and curious to learn what species could be seen in the ROK. Our intention was to introduce four interesting East Asian species: White-naped Cranes, Black-faced Spoonbill, Steller’s Sea Eagle, and of course, Spoon-billed Sandpiper!
My co-teachers were very helpful in explaining why these species are endangered and why they are so special to our world. 4th graders easily got to know these species’ full names in English and Korean.
Considering this was the first time for most of these children to learn about birds, we kept the vocabulary simple. We made bird teams, awesome mascot posters, and really cool bird masks.
The students had many exciting questions. Together we talked about size, shape, behavior and especially habitat. They seemed to especially like my crane dance. I’m so grateful to my co-teachers for their support of our work. The students did fantastic work! It’s a great feeling to find these students are also stoked about birds !