On the 10th of October Transition Year went on a school trip to the zoo. We got to school at our normal time and were on the bus excited for the day ahead at 10 o’clock. Rather than jumping straight into our planned workshop with representatives of Dublin Zoo, we were given time to explore and walk around and look at animals till the workshop started.
When it was time, we all gathered up and went into a room where we could look around at animal bones and skulls that were on display on shelves. It was fascinating to see the size of an elephant’s skull!
Because our group of 45 students was so large we were divided into two groups. One group was brought into a room where they were put into groups of five and a zoo employee talked to us about the environment, what sustainability is and orangutans. They did a couple of activities to do with what we were talking about. In one activity we were given a few pictures of things that affect the environment and we had to put it in order of the least harmful to the most harmful. This activity made us aware of how we are directly affecting the environment, it was scary.
In the second activity each team was given a role and a situation and we had to come up with a solution, one scenario was a farmer whose crops were being stolen by an orangutan and we had to come up with a solution for the problem.
The guide then brought us to see the orangutans where she talked a bit to us about what they eat, their habitat, how they mate etc. We learned they are an endangered species and if poachers don’t stop hunting them then they could become extinct. At around one o`clock when the workshop ended we were able to have some free time, go around the zoo and eat lunch.
We went home later in the afternoon. Everyone was satisfied after a very informative and enjoyable day at the zoo.
By: Hannah Ingram (TY Press)