Life­long Learn­ing through Na­ture at MCAST

Malta Independent - - NEWS -

BirdLife Malta helps MCAST in­tro­duce field trips to pro­mote out­door ed­u­ca­tion

For the first time BirdLife Malta is col­lab­o­rat­ing with the Malta Col­lege of Arts, Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy as part of the Life­long Learn­ing through Na­ture (LLN) project which pro­vides stu­dents with op­por­tu­ni­ties to get out­doors and to learn about the world around them.

This project was de­signed to de­velop re­sources for en­vi­ron­men­tal and sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment ed­u­ca­tion. It has worked with age groups from early years to post-se­condary to en­gage them through for­mal and non-for­mal ed­u­ca­tion out­lin­ing the im­por­tance of out­door learn­ing away from the class­room.

Thanks to this new part­ner­ship be­tween BirdLife Malta and MCAST, two new en­vi­ron­men­tal Learn­ing Out­comes re­lated to en­vi­ron­men­tal sus­tain­abil­ity have been de­vel­oped specif­i­cally for MCAST (one with Level 2 and one with Level 3 within Key Skills Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy) which will in­clude an el­e­ment of out­door ed­u­ca­tion through a field trip. This will give stu­dents the op­por­tu­nity to un­der­take in­ves­ti­ga­tions dur­ing a guided field visit to a nat­u­ral area.

Apart from con­nect­ing with na­ture and the pos­i­tive ef­fects of spend­ing time out­doors for men­tal and phys­i­cal well­be­ing, through be­ing out­side in the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment stu­dents will un­der­stand the part they play as in­di­vid­u­als in the wider ecosys­tem.

Thus, through first-hand ex­pe­ri­ence MCAST stu­dents will re­alise the ef­fects which hu­mans are hav­ing on the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment and how we all need to make choices that will be con­ducive to sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment.

Dur­ing the past two days BirdLife Malta ran in­tro­duc­tory ses­sions for the lec­tur­ers to brief them on the re­sources pro­vided and to build their knowl­edge and con­fi­dence in de­liv­er­ing these field trips with stu­dents which will be a new ex­pe­ri­ence for the lec­tur­ers.

These in­tro­duc­tory train­ing ses­sions took place at Wied talIsper­anza in Mosta and at Wied Blan­dun in Paola. In to­tal 13 MCAST lec­tur­ers are in­volved in this new ini­tia­tive and it is es­ti­mated that over 1,500 stu­dents will be en­gaged.

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