Ocean News

Spring Holiday Programme Report Back, 28th Sep – 2 Oct

7th October 2009

The Save Our Seas Shark Centre hosted it’s 3rd successful School Holiday programme. The Spring School Holiday programme ran from the 28thSeptember to the 2 October. We reached a total of 55 children from the ages of 4 – 18years old.

On Monday we had a group of 30 children from The John Power Childrens Camp accompanied by Denise Atkins, the programme’s director, Dennis Atkins and Charmine Davids, the facilitators of the Camp. The well-behaved group of teenagers, ranging in age from  14 – 18 years old,  whom were initially very quiet  but by the end of the lesson, both children and adults were interactive and expressed amazement at some of the facts about sharks. The fact that seemed most mind-boggling to the group, was the fact that Sharks are older than 400 million years old.

The daily activities consisted of a shark lesson, the content of which was detailed depending on the age of the children, the viewing of the documentary “Maxine’s Journey” which was enjoyed by adults and children alike.  The Rock Pool lesson on Dalebrook  Beach is always an effective draw card for these events, was run by Michael Carnegie who delights in the honesty and  spontaneity of the children.

The group of 48 educators from the University of the Western Cape, attending the Teachers Workshop on Wednesday led to the SeaSmart kids club being postponed. In the balance of the week’s programme we had a total of 25 children from individual bookings.

From a teaching aspect it was challenging to teach a particular group of children whom ages varied by 4 or 5 years of age.   The best approach to a mixed age group was to make the lessons more interactive and hands-on and letting the older children, share and explain their understanding of a question or fact to a younger sibling or new friend.  Fridays group of children were the youngest in comparison to the earlier groups in the week.  They aged between of 3 – 6 years old, and enjoyed play- acting the role of being one of the Oceans animals which they choose from our fluffy animal and plastic molded sharks, stingray and crab collection. Sitting in a circle on a carpet we spoke about what each animal ate and a unique fact about that particular animal. Gabriella a  3 year old little girl, was very quick to hide her seal behind her back when we discussed what the Great White Shark Puppet liked best of all to eat.