Sessions with schoolchildren LIFE Fluvial project in Portugal: The Day of the Autochthonous Forest

On 22 and 24 November 2021, 90 girls and boys from five classes of the primary schools of the municipality of Ponte de Lima and their teachers and assistants (1st grade, from the Feitosa Educational Centre, and especially 3rd and 4th grades, from the educational centres of Ribeira, Vitorino de Piães and Lagoas) came to celebrate the Native Forest Day with the LIFE Fluvial Project. The sessions included activities in the classroom and in the field. In the auditorium of the Environmental Interpretation Centre of the Lagoas de Bertiandos and São Pedro d’Arcos, a session entitled “Rivers and their fluvial corridors” was held, with the help of the characters and scenarios of the “Bolechas” story (by Pepe Carreiro). In the first part, the students were able to discuss their ideas on the key concepts of the session: biodiversity, river corridor, environmental services, threats (to river corridors), invasive species and Natura 2000. These concepts were then developed through videos and images so that the children could deepen their knowledge and awareness of river corridors, their functions and threats. The children also worked with the characteristic species of river corridors, combining the videos and images with contact with herbalised twigs of the tree species that they would later learn about in the field. Field activities included a visit to a small stream and its river corridor, with its native plant species and some of the exotic ones that may threaten it.

With no more time to play, we left some fun “homework” for all the children – the new Gota Game board – “O Vale do Lima e suas Veigas e Lagoas”, which will be homework not only for the children but also for their friends and family. In their pockets the children also took the story “Os Bochechas – Passeiam pelo Rio” and coloured pencils.

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