Today, we had a great afternoon with a group of elementary school kids as well as their teachers.
Firstly we went to their classroom to share stories of ocean animals with the kids.
We were so surprised at how they were interested in those animals! Not only did they keep asking questions, some of them actually knew about ocean animals pretty well.
When I introduced manta rays and whale sharks, I used photos in which they are with remoras by chance.
Of course the kids were interested in those little fishes looking like hitching a ride, so I talked about them a bit, then one kid asked me “is it mutualism?”
When I heard that, I was like “did I even know the word when I was that little?”
Anyway, the relationship between them is actually commensalism. Only remoras are benefited from clinging onto sharks, manta rays or other similar animals.
They catch and eat excess food that big animals have left behind, however those big don’t get any benefit from being sucked by remoras.
After that, I explained how the marine debris affecting oceans and underwater creatures. We also brought questions so that the kids could think of what we can do about it.
Watching some photos and videos, the kids were really feeling the pain of those animals!
We then moved onto an outdoor activity which was a riverside clean up.
The spot was supposed to be a beautiful and relaxing riverside park, but we picked up 8 bags of trashes only for 40 minutes!
Apparently some of them felt cleaning up was fun and said they wanted to do this again! This is a really rewarding word for us.
After the event, we called an Uber to bring the trashes to the waste collection center.
We kind of thought we might be refused because we were so dirty with these full trash bags, but knowing we were cleaning the park, the driver happily gave us a ride.
During the ride, one of the teachers from the school who helped us with moving the trashes were enthusiastically telling the driver how awesome the event had been.
Finally, when we saw a truck from the waste collection center, surprisingly it was the Uber driver that talked to the truck driver first saying we clean up the park!
From the beginning to the end, it was a happy afternoon full of great people!