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Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Environmental Workshops in Tulum

For the past 9 months, Tulum Expedition Members (EMs) and Staff have being delivering environmental workshops in two High Schools in town (Telesecundaria and Julio Ruelas).

The first recycling workshops were so succesful that were followed by the Coral Reef Conservation one and more recently current expedition members prepared and delivered a Mangroves and Sea grass workshop, all of them proving to be a success among the students. Paralel to the workshops street cleanings around the school area were organized in a regular basis which reinforced recycling and environmental culture.

Part of the workshop preparation was some research carried out by the EMs, in Spanish of course , which lead to lots of funny stories and learning heaps of new terms and vocab in Spanish. As the workshops had to be delivered in Spanish, this was a great way to practice and get ready for the big day!

In order to assess what was learned, the students were given a questioniare throwing the following results:


Escuela Julio Ruelas

  • 81 children took the questionaire.
  • 70% can recognize the Recycling symbol and 88% of them know why its important to recycle stating either that its better for the environment (most answers) or that it allows to reduce garbage or save energy.
  • 75% of them know they can recycle plastics in their school but oly 36% kow where to dispose it.
  • The 3 Rs concept seems to have been quite well understood with nearly half of them giving the 3 correct answers and nearly 40% of them 2 correct answers.
  • 70% of the children can locate the Recycling centre.


  • 152 children took the questionaire.
  • 70% of them recognize the Recycle symbol and 85% know why its important to recycle (less contamination most cited)
  • 3 quarters of them know they can recycle plastics in their school but 22% think they can recycle other materials too which is incorrect.
  • 80% of them are correct giving examples of things in plastic that they can recycle. Most often cited is bottles.
  • Concept of 3 Rs seems to have been well understood with 3 quarters giving of them the 3 correct words.


  • 7 Questions out of 9 have been answered correctly.
  • 88% of them understand that humans are the bigger threats towards these ecosystems (humans, contamination).
  • The reef have been the best understood ecosystem. There's some confusion between sea grass and mangroves but they understood that they are all related.

Without a doubt the workshops have proven to be an outstanding activity for both EMs and the community. We look forward to keep working in Tulum with the EMs from Pez Maya.