Yesterday, as I was passing by the center’s classrooms, I noticed some of our summer campers lining up beside projects they had worked on so, I walked over to have a closer look. There were posters and dioramas and sea turtle models – all made from recycled materials. They called it their ‘Sea Turtle Conference,’ a display of work to showcase to parents eager to hear about their day at LMC’s Jr. Marine Biologist camp.
I began to ask a few of the kids to tell me about their projects and was immediately met by energetic explanations of each tiny detail depicted in their work. Many showed beaches littered with trash. Some had turtles that had swallowed fishing hooks or become entangled in monofilament. A few had images of buildings with sea-turtle-safe red lights.
Each camper gave me a long list of things I could do to better protect sea turtles. They were determined to pass what they had learned in camp along to me – and anyone else who stopped to listen. The pride they took in their new mission to conserve the natural environment is the driving force for our Education Department and it is enough to make all of us want to work harder.
The Friday afternoon Sea Turtle Conference is now one of my favorite parts of LMC. Can’t wait to see what they will teach us next week.