Bahrain Treads New Ground in Fifth Annual GLOBE Green Walk

2009 GLOBE Green Walk Group
2009 GLOBE Green Walk Group

On 10 December 2009, the GLOBE Program in Bahrain hosted the fifth annual GLOBE Green Walk, an environmental awareness activity sponsored by the U.S. Embassy and Diar Al Muharraq W.L.L., in the Kingdom's Hawar Islands. Through this year's theme, "Together: Let's Discover the Biodiversity of Hawar Islands," students experienced Earth science first-hand through games and activities occurring during the walk. Secondary level students from both public and private schools participated, including ninety-four Bahraini students from 29 schools across the country, two GLOBE school coordinators, and five students from Saudi Arabia. Students and their teachers explored Bahrain's Hawar Islands from 6:00am to 5:00pm, learning about the flora (plant life) and fauna (animal life) on the islands. GLOBE protocols and other scientific activities were conducted strategically throughout the walk, allowing students and teachers to develop a greater awareness of the biodiversity of their local environment. Beyond learning about Bahrain, students' engagement in these stations provided opportunities for self-discovery, inquisitiveness, adventure and challenge through competitive games.

Students participate in activities to learn about endangered Hawar Island species
Students participate in activities to learn about
endangered Hawar Island species

]The Hawar Islands, characterized as an archipelago, or cluster of Islands, consist of 16 beautiful islands located off the west coast of Qatar in the Gulf of Bahrain. Due to unique environmental factors and habitats, multiple marine species, as well as resident and migratory birds, inhabit the area. By visiting eight different learning stations, students made observations to learn about the endangered species among the island's dwellers, including the Green Turtle, the Slender-Horned Gazelle, and multiple species of birds. Various resident and migratory birds inhabiting the Hawar Islands include: Sooty Falcons, Socotra Cormorants, Western Reef Herons, White-cheeked terns, Saunders's Terns, Greater Flamingos, and Ospreys.

Appropriate to the theme of biodiversity, this is the first year the GLOBE Green Walk has been held in the Hawar Islands. In previous years, the event was held in Al Areen Wildlife Park and was framed around such themes as "Climate Change and its Impact on the Environment" and "Seasons and Biomes." Each year, the theme is chosen by the GLOBE Bahrain management team consisting of school coordinators and members of the Ministry of Education and focuses on current local or worldwide environmental issues. This year's new location was suggested by Minister of Education, Dr. Majed Bin Ali Al Noami, who wanted to introduce students to the unique habitat of the Hawar Islands, giving them the opportunity to learn about its rare and endangered species.

Students explore the islands to learn about biodiversity
Students explore the islands to learn about biodiversity

Special recognition is given to the sponsorship of the U.S. Embassy and to Diar Al Muharraq W.L.L. for once again assisting GLOBE Bahrain to hold this annual event. The Bahrain GLOBE Green Walk allows GLOBE students from throughout the country to participate in inquiry-based explorations leading to a greater understanding of their local environment and opportunities to collaborate with other students in their region.

Read about the 2006 GLOBE Green Walk in Bahrain.

2 March 2010


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