Thanks to the support of SPAR, another Junior Biologist course has come and gone, and as always, it was a blast! Our highly popular Junior Biologist course is aimed at kids between the ages of 10 and 12, who are interested in the ocean and its beautiful plants and animals.
Considering the sheer size of the group, the Two Oceans Aquarium Foundation educators were successful in managing various activities. According to feedback from the students, lessons and discussions around the sea turtles and the cephalopods (octopus family) were their favourites.
Day one of the course began with a guided tour of the Aquarium, where the students were introduced to various programmes and work done by the Two Oceans Aquarium and its Foundation. Specific topics for the first day included wetlands and rocky shores, which prepared the kids for their field trip the following day. (Spoiler alert – there was a field trip!)
Before their trip on day two, the students kicked off the day with a treasure hunt around the Aquarium, which not only encouraged research skills but also taught them about all the wonderful species calling the Aquarium home. They then boarded the bus and took off to the Green Point Biodiversity Park, where they were divided into groups and did a map activity to learn about the history and importance of Green Point Park, and in particular, its wetlands.
The students then moved over to the Mouille Point rock pools and enjoyed some exploring. After their research and adventures, each group brought back something significant they had found, and thought would be appropriate enough to present to the class.
Day three of the course started with a lesson about the two oceans along the South African coastline, after which our Aquarium is named. The students were taught all about the fascinating cephalopods and their adaptations. They also enjoyed lessons on the difference between tortoises, terrapins, and sea turtles. They then ended the day with an informative and unique behind-the-scenes tour of the Aquarium Foundation’s turtle rescue, rehabilitation, and release facility.
On the final day of the Junior Biologist course, the students participated in shark and fish lessons, where they were joined by some special guests. All the groups were presented with a sardine and a live shark to engage with. During this exciting lesson, the students were also taught about SASSI and sustainable fishing and received a special talk from a Senior Guide about the conservation of penguin species in the Penguin Exhibit. This full and intriguing day concluded yet another successful programme.
This fun-filled and educational Junior Biologist course would not have been possible without SPAR, which generously sponsored the entire programme. A big thank you to the Two Oceans Aquarium Foundation team and selfless volunteers, who brought the programme together and made it an exciting experience for everyone involved!