Monday, October 15, 2012

Endangered Species Monday - Educating children will change the world

As much as I don't want to believe this, educating adults is much more difficult than educating children. I guess its like the old saying goes - you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Or can you? As adults, we are sometimes stuck in our way of thinking and are challenged to think otherwise. Explaining the importance of an endangered animal to an adult means changing the way something has been thought about for years - sometimes decades.

However, explaining the same thing to a child is liking flipping a light switch on. Suddenly a new way of thinking is introduced and a child will run with it - soak up the information like a sponge - and then release that information to anyone who will listen. A child craves learning new things and is eager to share what he or she has learned. Today's children are the future of this planet. What my child does 20 years from now will either further the existence of current endangered species or continue to clean up the mess that we have made of this world.

One of the best ways to educate a child is to give hands-on experiences. While libraries and computers are amazing and can teach vast amounts about why animals are endangered or have become extinct, there is nothing quite like seeing it first hand.

Touching a rhino horn or ocelot pelt, holding a boot that was made from snake skin, these are the types of educational experiences that will become embedded in a child's mind.

Children are emotional thinkers. They see an animal being harmed and can relate this to a pet they may have at home or a charcater in an animated movie. Some, like my son, will go beyond the average persons level of involvement and ask questions that most adults don't even think about.

A great way to get your child the hands-on experiences about endangered animals is to visit your local zoo or aquarium. Many of these places have tables set up with pictures, artifacts, and games that make learning fun. You will be surprised at how much a child will retain and quickly repeat to others. So if you want to help save the endangered species, start by educating your child. Our children are the future leaders of this world and what they learn now will make a difference for many years to come.

1 comment:

  1. This is an awesome post, Michelle. Well written and a fantastic message, all of which I completely agree with.