Students benefit from free educational tours

October 23, 2015
Contributed Michelle Thomas (third from left), Miss Kingston and St Andrew Festival Queen 2015 poses with 'Educatours Ja' team members at the launch of the educational tours of Blue and John Crow Mountain for Heritage Week recently.

Seventy-five students from the Corporate Area benefited from a set of free educational tours of the Blue and John Crow mountains earlier this week, under an initiative spearheaded by Michelle Thomas, the reigning Kingston and St Andrew Festival Queen.

The tours, which ended yesterday, were launched under the name #ToursBJCM, and was an initiative that sought to expose students from various high schools to different aspects of Jamaica's natural and cultural heritage through an exciting tour experience.

According to Thomas, the tours were a tremendous success.

"We wanted 60 students, but some 75 students turned up so we had to reshuffle resources to accommodate them, but everything went according to plan. The students enjoyed the tours, the activities, the food, everything that we have in store for them," Thomas said.

She noted that the most popular activity on the expedition was the Treasure Hunt game in which students interacted with the environment using tablet devices.

The winners were given cultural passports, which allowed them to visit certain cultural sites free of cost.

Other activities on the tours included hiking trails, quiz and team building activities, cultural explorations, and fauna and flora discovery.

Thomas noted that there will be more tours of cultural sites on the island in the coming months with other students.

The #ToursBJCM project, as well as the upcoming tours, is in partnership with 'Educatours Ja', a team of young individuals, who utilise unconventional methods to educate students in outdoor settings.

"We are looking at trying to engender a sense of cultural awareness in our youth even beyond these tours," Thomas said.

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