Spreading the word: genetics and conservation in secondary schools in Abruzzo 23.06.2021

One of the objectives of Endemixit is to increase public awareness about biodiversity conservation and the use of innovative genetic and genomic approaches as modern tools to protect the Italian biological heritage. This goal can be reached also involving school teachers and students in specific educational programs. For this reason, we are developing a dissemination project with secondary schools in and around the Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise National Park.
The program is focused on biodiversity conservation and genetics in general, but it will use the Marsican bear, one of the Endemixit species and a local and endangered iconic species, as an example.
A short educational package, including at least one seminar from the Endemixit team and 3-4 hours of teaching, will be developed together with the local teachers. Questionnaires will be also administered before and after the educational program, in order to verify the effectiveness of the method and to check if the knowledge and perception of the children about the Marsican bear and the use of genetics as a conservation tool are affected by the program.
We are now in the process of preparing the package, and at the same time we are in touch with different schools to define the administrative details and to discuss with the interested teachers the contents of the lessons. The plan is to start with the first questionnaires in Autumn this year.  

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