Eco-Gozo - A resource pack for teachers

Last May, the Ministry for Gozo launched Eco-Gozo – a resource pack for teachers. This professionally-designed essential teaching aid for our students was the idea of the Minister for Gozo, Hon. Giovanna Debono who, being an educator herself, strongly believes that for the eco-Gozo vision to be successful, it has to be inculcated through modern educational media, and therefore starting from the basic roots of schooling was a natural path to follow.

resource packUnder the leadership of Prof. Paul J Pace, Director of the Centre for Environmental Education and Research at the University of Malta, a team of teachers from both primary and secondary sectors within the Gozo College, discussed, planned and developed a number of very interesting lesson activities to target both children in primary as well as students within the secondary schools.

The pack consists of a handy, colourful and easy-to-read booklet in Maltese as well as an English version of the booklet on CD.

The primary lesson activities cover the following topics: traditional Maltese rubble walls, (il-ħitan tas-sejjieħ), the life of the bee and honey making, my community, Gozo tourist attractions, farm visit and discovering our feasts - traditions and culture.

On the other hand, the secondary lesson activities cover an even wider spectrum which is subject bound. We find topics such as Impressionism and Plein Air painting from the Citadel in Arts, fieldwork at Ta' Ċenċ in Biology, Externalities in Business Studies, Salt Production in English, Id-Divertiment fl-imgħoddi u llum in Environmental Studies, the use of Gozo cheeselets in different savoury dishes, organic farming in Home Economics and the Hidden Treasures of Dwejra in Personal and Social Development (PSD). Besides, teachers of Maltese, Italian and French in secondary schools have specific lessons on how to integrate eco-Gozo themes while their students are learning the language being taught. For instance, French students can learn about local and French breakfasts, different modes of transport in Malta and France and national feasts in Gozo and France. During Maltese lessons, children will learn about Ulisse u r-Ramla whereas in Italian, students learn about our feste e arte and la grotta di Ninu.

The CD presentations are definitely a must for us Teachers. Children will find all resources highly relevant and therefore interesting and that is where learning occurs.

Unlike other book reviews, this review is being done some months later than the launching itself. The reason is simple. A book is to be read. This is a resource pack – and it is to be read and delivered. During the last scholastic year, all teachers within the Gozo College were presented with a copy of this resource pack to be used across the primary and secondary curriculum.

It is highly recommended to be used and reused. It is definitely a great asset for all educators. Without doubt, this essential resouce pack will leave highly positive long- and short-term results in continuing to shape the island of Gozo into an eco-island.

Frank Tabone