Tropical Field Research Program
We anticipate two teachers will be associated with the program. Seeds of Change Inc. will pay all of your expenses associated with your high school science group's trip. There should be a lead teacher and a second teacher/chaperone. The first trip is viewed as a trial for your high school. If the trip is a success and meets its’ objectives, we wish to make this an annual trip with your high school students. This means that we would plan to take 16 students each year.
As the school’s sponsoring teachers, we look to you to teach the five pre-trip classes plus a pre-trip meeting with students and parents, usually consisting of one class per month for about 90 minutes. In addition, we look to you to be the program spokesperson in your high school and the focal point for collecting the student’s payment checks as per their schedule. We do not expect you to be involved with any fundraising. Seeds of Change will manage that part of this program with parent volunteers.
Seeds of Change will provide you with curriculum for 5 pre-trip class modules (SOC program teachers, request login in footer of this webpage). Students will have a workbook that includes background information, research articles and activities that prepare them for the Costa Rica research program. You will have the teacher's edition and choice regarding which activities and homework you require.
Seeds of Change will also look to you to take responsibility for the students travel from your local airport to Costa Rica and to provide oversight of your school students during the trip. Once the students reach Costa Rica, we will meet your group at the airport, go to a local restaurant for lunch, and then transport you to the SOC research site. That trip will take about 1-1/2 hours driving from the Liberia airport to the tropical rainforest on the north slope of the Rincon Volcano.
Research Immersion Program
Once at the research site our scientists will take over the science component of this program and our on-site coordination team will be responsible for off-site activities. However, we look to the teachers to ensure that your group of students is on time for each activity, on or off-site, and that you manage/monitor their social, emotional and physical health during the program. You are responsible for enforcing lights out, for example.
We would like each teacher to monitor all the experiments being done and to participate to the degree you think seems logical. Once at the site, we look to you to help provide coordination insight and help make decisions about activities of the day. For instance, if on a certain day we had planned a zip line off-site, but there was profound rain, we would probably like to make a decision to switch activities for that day.
We look to you to coordinate and manage the daily blog, so that each day two students have responsibility for preparing the blog for that day. We would like you to keep the students on schedule to prepare their blogs and once you have approved the blog content, post it so the parents are updated.
On the eighth day of the trip, the students will present the results of their projects to the group and instructors. These presentations should also be given back at your school to parents and friends, school administration, board members, and other students. We would like you to assume responsibility for making this happen.
After this last day in the tropical rainforest, we will transition the next morning to El Jobo, Costa Rica in the dry forest along the Pacific coast about 2 1/2 hours away, arriving in time for lunch. Here we will spend two days conducting marine biology activities.
Students will stay in groups of 2-4 in homes with local families. Teachers also stay in homes within shouting distance of the student homes. At the start of the two days in El Jobo, students will get an introduction to our host NGO and their marine conservation activities.
On the eleventh day of the trip, the flight back to the U.S. usually departs at midday. So the last responsibility you have is to help manage packing up so students are ready/on time for the trip to the airport.
Seeds of Change covers the participating teacher’s costs associated with these science research trips. We realize that if this program is made an annual program at a school, the ongoing effort of these lead teachers must have compensation in order to maintain viability. It will require the two teachers to dedicate 1 to 1-1/2 hours once a month for six months preceding the trip and it will take 10 days out of their summer break. Seeds of Change will provide a modest stipend for lead teachers who help us carry out this program after the first year’s trip.