World Wildlife Day - 3 March 2016

3rd March marks World Wildlife Day, an international day to raise awareness of wildlife conservation issues such as endangered species and the destruction of habitats.  The current statistics are not encouraging.  Some of the most well-loved and iconic species such as tigers, pandas and African rhinos are classified by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) as either ‘endangered’ or ‘critically endangered.’

The theme of this year’s World Wildlife Day is “The future of wildlife is in our hands” and the focus of this year's commemoration is the protection of elephants.  

The relationship between humans and animals and the responsibility of preserving the world’s wildlife for the next generation are the key messages that this day aims to convey.  With a large number of species under constant threat from poaching and destruction of habitats, the struggle to protect animals the world over is unending.

The classroom is a good place to promote understanding of this subject and there is a wide range of sources available to the teacher online.  The International Fund for Animal Welfare has a range of resources available on its website and this collection of lesson plans and activities, entitled ‘Elephants, Never Forget,’ ties in neatly with the theme of this year’s World Wildlife Day. 

For older students who may be considering a career working with animals, this web page provided by the University of Kent is full of information on the right career path for a host of animal-related jobs  and could inspire animal-loving pupils who are unsure about what they want to do when they leave school or university.

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