Bring the rainforest into a classroom through education

Outreach Blog

Written by Petricia A. Hutasoit (BNF education staff)

Kelas Konservasi activities in SDN 2 Kereng Bangkirai

Nowadays environmental education is needed to be taught from an early age because environmental issues cannot be underestimated, we still remember the haze in 2015 that make a big impact for the environment, socio-economic, and health.  We don’t want it will happen again in the future, so we have to do something and many ways to do preventions, one of the solution is education.

The education programme of Borneo Nature Foundation has the aim to provide children with the knowledge and tools to initiate conservation measures themselves so that they become the facilitators for change in the future. Our project is non-formal Education in Kereng Bangkirai well-known Anak Sabangau, visiting the rainforest, and conservation on a school called KELASI.

KELASI is an acronym of  Kelas Konservasi ( Conservation in School ), aimed to bring the rainforest into a classroom to raise awareness to all aspect of the conservation problem, so they are empowered to do more. Addressed to the students of 9- 11 years old, supported and accompanied by the teacher, so not only the students will get the information and experiences, also the teacher that can be forwarded to the others classes in the school.

Field trip to Sabangau Forest
Photo by Ferdinandus Eko | BNF | CIMTROP

Started on 2017, Kelas Konservasi has been done in SDN 1 and SDN 2 Kereng Bangkirai grade 5a, and still ongoing classes in SDIT (Elementary School) Sahabat Alam and SDN 2 Keren Bangkirai grade 5b. There are 6 series modules bout different aspects of the forest as follows, peat swamp forest, Orangutan, Gibbon, threats of the forest and solution, and field trip to the forest, before the team start the session, there is a questionnaire given to the kids to know how much they know about the module’s content. The facilitators use some approach and fun learning methods to make the students easy to understands,  such as using games, videos, discussion and some types of equipment. It’s not only the facilitators teach the kids but they are learning too from the kids.

In the end of the activities after through all the modules, Education team will bring the students to LLG-UPR CIMTROP a place where BNF do the research.  The facilitator gives the kids firsthand experience to learn about peat swamp forest, threats of the forest, and biodiversity, it’s an implementation of 6 modules that have been taught. We hope kelas konservasi inspire the kids to start to think, more concerned, and do action about what they can do to make their environment better and become generation conservation for the future.