The Lemur Conservation Foundation offers a Professional Development Workshop for K-5 educators. The workshop covers topics to inspire educators in any setting to learn and teach about lemurs and the environment using our Ako Conservation Education Program materials. Educators who successfully complete the workshop earn a certificate of completion for professional development that can be used for teaching license renewal and recertification requirements.
LCF strives to establish a network of educators that promote awareness of environmental issues through the exploration of lemurs and Madagascar’s rich biodiversity. Homeschool, STEM, formal educators, and informal educators (from zoos, libraries, and other community organizations) are invited to learn essential background information about lemurs and their native home in Madagascar thanks to a provoking presentation from Dr. Erik Patel, LCF Conservation & Research Director. After a deep dive into concepts such as the importance of biodiversity and factors contributing to declining lemur populations, workshop participants are prepared to confidently and effectively take action to make a positive difference for lemurs.
Educators are provided with an opportunity to observe, model, and practice activities from the Ako Conservation Education Program curriculum in order to familiarize themselves with the content and conservation themes. The program features a series of lemur-themed picture books in which story and science converge. Illustrator Deborah Ross and the late primatologist Dr. Alison Jolly collaborated to create the six-book Ako Series. These books, available in English and Malagasy, led to accompanying posters and educator materials highlighting the incredible biodiversity of lemurs and their fragile habitats in Madagascar. Thanks to continued funding from Nature’s Path EnviroKidz, the Ako Program has developed into an international environmental education program.
With a full staff of lemur experts on hand, teachers are able to ask questions and discuss extensions during the workshop to create personalized activities. Workshop content is largely science-based, but a wide array of other subjects—including language arts, physical education, math, and more—are incorporated into the curriculum. This flexibility allows teachers to modify lesson plans to suit individual classroom needs.
LCF provides programs in managed breeding, scientific research, education and art to help conserve and protect lemurs and their habitat. With many species of lemurs on the brink of extinction, we are grateful to teachers who attend our workshops and demonstrate a passion for educating the next generation of conservationists.
To learn more about LCF’s Ako Conservation Education Program and download free lemur lesson plans, click here. If you are interested in attending a workshop, contact Katie Virun, LCF Education Manager, at email@example.com or call (941) 322-8494.