LEARNING IS APPRECIATING
What better way to appreciate the Earth than to step onto the sand barefooted and see the expanse of an ocean for the very first time? It was something of an Earth Day for the third- and fourth-grade students at Maysville Elementary school on their field trip to Bear Island with the N.C. Coastal Federation. Although Maysville is less than an hour from the beach, many of the students have never been.
“Look!” A student shouts out, pointing to large ripples left behind from a dolphin. The captain of the boat that ferries the kids to the island cuts the engine and the other 30 kids move to the bow. The graceful dolphin resurfaces closer to the ferry. The “whoa” and “wows” of the children fill the air.
“They’re, like, so beautiful,” says one young girl. It is the first time she’s seen a dolphin in the wild.
Since January, Rachel Bisesi, one of the federation’s educators, has been visiting the students at Maysville Elementary to teach them about coastal plants and how stormwater runoff pollution affects the health of the ocean. The students have been learning about ecosystems at school.