The Department of Geosciences (through Principal Investigator Prof. Alan Deidun, Dr Adam Gauci and Mr Johann Galdies) and the Centre for Environmental Education and Research (CEER) within the Faculty of Education (through Prof. Paul J Pace and Dr Mark C Mifsud) recently organised a national teacher training event within the ambit of the Blue Schools MED project.
The training event was attended by around ten teachers hailing from a variety of Primary and Secondary local Church, State and Private schools and was held at the CEER premises at Fawwara.
The three-year project, running till September 2023 and funded within the ambit of the Erasmus+ funding framework, is coordinated by the French company ACTeon and sees the University of Malta as a partner within a Consortium of 10 partners hailing from 4 different countries (France, Italy, Greece and Malta). The main objective of the project is to introduce the concept of Blue Schools within the participating countries by establishing a network of collaborating schools, educators and students.
The Blue Schools Med project (BlueS_Med) aims at developing, testing and evaluating innovative approaches to integrate ocean/marine issues and challenges in the curriculum and educational activities of schools in different Mediterranean countries. The Blue Schools concept originated in Portugal and it involves the fostering of schools which promote ocean literacy with their students through practical means.
Any school can join the national Blue Schools network, with the first step being the identification and formulation of a Blue Challenge by teachers for their respective students. The Blue Challenge can be related to any ocean-oriented thematic, ranging from a healthy ocean, food from the ocean, climate and the ocean, landscape and ocean, maritime culture and heritage, migration and ocean to communication and ocean. The Blue Schools Med project aims to facilitate the formation of such national Blue Schools networks and to provide a platform through which the efficacy of and experience from different Blue Challenges can be shared outside national school networks.
The EU Commission is investing considerable resources in the promotion of ocean literacy across Europe, through pan-European initiatives such as the EU4Ocean Coalition and the European Blue Schools Network. The University of Malta has, since 2014, through Malta’s Ocean Ambassador Prof. Alan Deidun and under the auspices of the Office of HE The
President of Malta, organised annual ocean literacy promotion days so as to commemorate World Ocean Day (8 June) at the Malta National Aquarium.
A short video clip of the training event in caption has been developed by Dr Adam Gauci and is available for viewing on social media through this link.