I was honored to present my new Coastal California Nature Journal at the National Marine Educators Conference this month!
What is NMEA?
The National Marine Educators Association (NMEA) brings together professional educators from the US and Canada who teach about ocean or freshwater ecosystems. The organization includes informal educators (like me) from aquariums, museums, zoos, summer camps, science centers, and more, plus classroom teachers, university professors, scientists, and students.
Presenting my Coastal California Nature Journal
I shared my newest book, Coastal California Nature Journal, in a 15-minute talk at this year’s conference. I shared my methodology behind creating the nature journal, educational connections, and unique features. I also asked my audience to participate in a quick demonstration, and we sketched out a journal entry of hermit crabs from a photo I took. It was so great to hear positive feedback from the participants and tons of fun ideas for future nature journals.
Thank you to everyone who joined me for my talk!
This conference was one of the highlights of my year so far. I met so many wonderful people who have the same professional goals as I do: to increase ocean literacy and help people build positive connections to our marine ecosystems.
Some of my main takeaways included:
- Many innovative and creative educational tools are gaining support from scientific studies showing how effective they can be, including children’s books!
- Learning from and implementing traditional ecological knowledge is critical to protecting and revitalizing our planet’s ecosystems.
- Everyone has an environmental identity, or a way that they understand themselves as part of (or separate from) the natural world. This identity is formed in early childhood, making environmental education from a very young age key to fostering lifelong connections to nature.
Next up: North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) conference in October!