Two Oceans Aquarium Environmental Education Centre outreach teacher Thabo Sabeko, whom you may have met previously, recently received high praise from Western Cape Education Department Curriculum Adviser: Intermediate Phase Geraldine Goldblatt. Goldblatt sat in on a lesson Sabeko presented at a primary school in Cape Town and sent us a glowing endorsement; meet the man behind the accolade.
In a letter sent to the Aquarium, Goldblatt said: “Factreton Primary School [in Cape Town] arranged for your teacher Thabo Sabeko to come to the school and teach the Grade 4, 5 and 6 learners about sea creatures. The learners were very excited to participate in such a practical and valuable lesson. It was obviously very well prepared with exactly the right amount of information for this level. This lesson fits in very well with their Natural Science curriculum, and in addition it will stimulate care and real interest in the marine environment.
“In terms of methodology, Mr Sabeko is obviously a very experienced teacher as he kept discipline and was well organised, moving from step to step to build on the child’s knowledge. The children participated in touching the creatures and answering meaningful questions. The language and selection of content was at all times interesting and understandable.
“The schools are very lucky to have such a gifted educator as Mr Thabo Sabeko.”
Well, we couldn’t agree more … Congratulations on this shining endorsement, Thabo!
Pleased to meet you
In light of this letter, we asked Thabo 10 burning questions …
When did you start teaching at the Two Oceans Aquarium Environmental Education Centre?
I started my position as outreach teacher in mid-2008.
What did you do before teaching here?
I worked as a sound engineer.
Why did you start teaching?
It was almost accidental. When I first started working at the Two Oceans Aquarium, I was scared to touch any of the animals. But as I learnt more about them I really found them very interesting and applied for the outreach teacher position.
What does an average day in your working life entail?
On an average day, I visit previously disadvantaged schools with the Outreach van and teach up to 200 children about marine animals by showing and letting them touch some of them.
What’s your favourite part of working at the Two Oceans Aquarium?
Learning about these amazing animals and being surrounded by them on a daily basis.
What’s your favourite lesson to teach?
Underwater Wonders … It is a very interactive lesson and involves all children in the activity.
What’s the most interesting fact about marine life you’d like to share with learners (young and old)?
Nothing in particular, however I would encourage children to go out into nature and observe the different creatures that one can find on our beaches and rocky shores as well as rivers and dams.
What’s the one thing you bet nobody knew about the Two Oceans Aquarium Environmental Education Centre?
The staff at the Education Centre is like a family. We work well together and support each other throughout.
If you weren’t a teacher, you’d be ...
I think I would still like to work in a field that involves children and education.
What do you do in your spare time?
I enjoy watching movies, especially animated ones. I also like spending time with my friends and I make sure to call my son (who lives in the Eastern Cape) every day.