What is ECO RACE “Nature Takes 5”?
The first ECO RACE “Nature Take 5” was successfully completed in September 2003 at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserved with overwhelming participation from the schools. EOA can organise customised Eco Race for school or organisation to natural places like Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Dairy Farm Nature Reserve, Labrador Nature Reserve, and so on.
ECO RACE draws its inspiration by the annual bird race organised by the Nature Society (Singapore). While the bird race focus only on wild birds, ECO RACE encompasses a wider spectrum of nature which may include plants, insects, reptiles and even marine life.
It involves the group participants armed with digital camera working together to first record a specified number of species in a specified area.
Once the field recording is done, the group comes back to an indoor space where they will download the digital images captured into a laptop and start the next phase of the race that is the preparation for a slide preparation.
Guide books will be provided for identification and an IT expert is on hand for assistance.
ECO RACE is done within a limited time period. In ECO RACE “Nature Takes 5” it would mean 5 hours to complete both the fieldwork and the indoor preparation for presentation. The group will then take turn to present their finished work to all present in the race.
Why ECO RACE “Nature Takes 5”?
We believe the outdoor and nature in particular has a lot to teach us if we make it point to go out and discover it for ourselves. The ECO RACE “Nature Takes 5” is based on this belief – LEARNING OUT OF THE DOOR.
In a traditional nature trip, a nature guide leads and talks while the participants merely follow and ask questions. If you are standing way back of the group you are likely not able to hear what is being said. It is a rather passive on the part of the participants and the trip is as interesting as the nature guide can be.
In ECO RACE “Nature Takes 5” the participants being in a competition have definitely to be active. Those serious in the race will probably have to do some homework like reading up on the flora and fauna of the location prior to the race date. The race hopes to encourage learning through self-discovery rather than being instructed most time.
The fact that modern IT equipment like digital camera and computers are used in the race means that the participants have also to be as IT savvy as possible. Some participants will have to do some preparation in term of practicing the necessary IT skill before the race. As limited time is given to the participants to the usage of the computer, it would mean the group who is most IT savvy would also has an advantage.
One of the judging criteria is image composition. This would mean having a good artistic composition sense. Practice and reading up would be the key to this skill and this would be best done way before the race date.
The last but important part of the race is the presentation of their finished work through a ‘powerpoint’ or equivalent presentation. This may be the most difficult for most participants. It would mean standing out there and face the whole audience.
The talking is therefore done by the participants not nature guide. Perhaps the nature guide or in this case the judges can chip in to correct or expand on the presentation. This is active learning.