On Tuesday 19th September, the 3rd Years went on a tour to Dublin Zoo for a Science and CSPE trip!
One of the zoo workers, Féilim, took the 3rd Years out to do an ecology workshop in Phoenix Park. He quizzed their knowledge on what a habitat and ecosystem is, and got them to fill in their ecology booklets to help them with their Junior Cycle study. Féilim explained the terms in great detail with pictures and examples for our 3rd Years!
He asked the students to assess the weather at that time to get a better understanding of the Irish climate and its ecosystem. He asked the students to use their "identification keys" to identify where north is, and even taught them how to identify directions using the sun.
The students were then able to do their own habitat study where they were able to observe different plants and insects in the park.
The 3rd Years were then taken into sustainability talks. One talk discussed technology and the other fast fashion.
In the technology talk, they talked about the sustainable development goals. They also did a quiz that discussed how different species are affected by coltan mining. They learned about the unethical ways of making technology by deforesting rainforests which leads to loss of habitat and the endangerment of species. The speaker, Brandon, told the 3rd Years how the money they gave to attend the zoo will help animal conservation, research, and breeding programmes globally in South America, Europe, Asia, and Africa!
Did you know the Democratic Republic of Congo was responsible for 64% of coltan mining in the world and the mining has led to a 77% decrease in local eastern gorilla population over the last 2 decades?
Brandon then got 7 volunteers to stand up and hold different tech products. The students had to discuss and guess which was the longest lasting product to the shortest lasting product. They rearranged themselves in the order they thought they would go in. Then Brandon and the 3rd Years discussed the term "greenwashing" and where to spot it. They discussed places that they should support such as "WEEE Ireland" that take in battery-powered tech for recycling
The 3rd Years also received a talk about fast fashion. Victoria walked the 3rd Years through how the sustainable development goals impact the needs of people in the present without affecting the needs of the future.
Victoria asked them to have a discussion about the extinction of many species of animals. They all agreed that fast fashion had a lot to do with the decline in many animals as they are slaughtered at rapid rates to make clothes. They also discussed what to do with unwanted clothes instead of just throwing the pieces out. For example: Recycle!
Both talks prioritised the 12th Sustainable Development Goal “Responsible Consumption and Production” which informed them of the importance of their work and research in Dublin Zoo.
Report by Ellie Hall (4th Year)
Photographs by Nikki Maxwell and Ellie Hall (4th Year)