How do you inspire children to care about the environment? Maritza Morales Casanova, an environmentalist and Rolex Young Laureate from the Yucatán, established Ceiba Pentandra, a theme park designed to teach students all about environmental issues.
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How do you inspire children to care about the environment? It’s a question Maritza Morales Casanova, an environmentalist and Rolex Young Laureate from Yucatán, Mexico, has spent her life working to answer. Morales Casanova established Ceiba Pentandra Park, what she calls a theme park of sorts in Yucatán designed to teach students all about environmental issues.
“A normal school in Mexico has no environmental education,” Morales Casanova says. As such, Ceiba Pentandra is no normal school: It’s a free, interactive, and fun experience, where young visitors learn all about climate change, wetland conservation, pollution, and wildlife. Morales Casanova leads them in examining small animal species, planting and tending to soil, and playing games.
Seeing her Yucatán community in peril initially fueled her passion for environmentalism. A lack of environmental awareness is a huge problem in Mexico, and Yucatán is a hot spot for resource degradation. Morales Casanova looks to children—she calls them the best teachers in the world and the next heroes of "Grandmother Earth"—to change the future.
“Their hands may be small but their hearts are immense,” she says.
Her next goal? To take Ceiba Pentandra’s curriculum to other interested schools around the world.
PRODUCER/EDITOR: Katy Daily
SENIOR PRODUCERS: Chris Mattle and Mike Olcott
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: Jared M. Gair
Her "Classroom" is an Environmental Theme Park | Best Job Ever
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