A SERIES OF FOUR SESSIONS TOOK PLACE IN SCHOOLS OVER THE AUTUMN TERM, EACH ONE LED BY A SAFARI RANGER FROM THE ZOO.
The Safari Ranger initiative aims to promote conservation messages in schools. Evaluation is crucial for their continued success
The first three sessions each focused on a different area of conservation, and the final session was a conservation-related craft session. The primary school students who participated were 7-11 years old. Before the series of sessions, each student was surveyed to assess their current understanding of conservation related issues.
The same worksheet was presented to students after the sessions, allowing us to assess the impact of the sessions on their level of conservation understanding. The worksheet included these three questions:
- What is conservation?
- Do you think that YOU can help protect endangered species? If yes, how could you help?
- Can you draw some of the ways that we can help stop animals from becoming extinct? (include labels if you can)
Each question was quantified by use of a numerical scale that increased as the depth and understanding shown in the answers improved. Across the group, the mean score for each of the above questions was significantly higher after the Safari Ranger programme.
We also included four attitude statements on the survey, two of which showed significant changes across the programme. There was a significant decrease in agreement with the statement: ‘It is wrong for animals to be kept in zoos’ and a significant increase in agreement with the statement: ‘Zoos are for saving animals from dying out (‘extinction’).’