Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Dark Tide: Ecotourism

Ecotourism is defined as "responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people." (TIES, 1990) Definition and information provided by the wonderful site below. Don't miss visiting  it. They have been doing an awesome job!

I. Ecotourism is about uniting conservation, communities, and sustainable travel. This means that those who implement and participate in ecotourism activities should follow the following ecotourism principles. In pairs, think of examples of how to accomplish them in en ecotourist tour:
  • Minimize impact.
  • Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect.
  • Provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts.
  • Provide direct financial benefits for conservation.
  • Provide financial benefits and empowerment for local people.
  • Raise sensitivity to host countries' political, environmental, and social climate.
II. Work in pairs.

Here is a list of Do's and Don'ts about ecotourism. Decide which statements are do's and which ones aren't. Justify your answers and give examples.

1 - Carry back all non-degradable litter such as empty bottles, tins, plastic bags etc.

2 - Observe the sanctity of holy sites, temples and local cultures.

3 - Cut noise pollution. Do not blare aloud radios, tape recorders or other electronic entertainment equipment in nature resorts, sanctuaries and wildlife parks.

4 - Take away flora and fauna in the forms of cuttings, seeds or roots as long as you don't take too much.

5 - Use detergent, not soap, in streams or springs while washing and bathing.

 6 - Leave cigarettes butts hidden and make open fires in the forests as long as you do it safely.

7 - Ask for prior permission before taking a photograph.

8 - After defecation, cover with mud or sand. Make sure that the spot is at least 30 meters away from the water source.

9 - Offer children food stuff and sweets.

Don'ts: 4, 5, 6, 9 Do's: 1, 2, 3, 7, 8

III. Discuss these questions:

1. What's your opinion about eco-tourism?

2. Have you ever experienced eco-tourism? Talk about your experience.

3. What kind of trip would you rather take? Ecotourism, cultural trips, visits to huge cities, trips to small cities, or any other?

4. What ecotourist trip would you rather take if you had to choose one from the list below. Rank them from 1 to 10, considering 1 your favorite.

- a safari in Africa

- a rain forest trip

- seeing the whales in South Africa

- seeing dolphins in Fernando de Noronha, Brazil

- seeing seals and penguins in Antartida

- climbing up a volcano in Chile

 - visiting Indian tribes in South America or Africa

- diving with the sharks in the Caribbean

- touring the canyons and national parks in the USA

- snorkeling in The Great Barrier Reef, off the east coast of Australia, the world's largest coral reef 

 IV. Watch the movie segment from the movie Dark Tide and answer the questions that follow. 

1. Describe the scene. 

 2. Would you consider it ecotourism? Justify your answer. 

3. What did the tourists see and do in their trip? 

4. What kind of information are the tourist provided with? 

5. How efficient are the tour guides? Why? 

6. Would you like to take such a trip? Why (not)? 

7. Have you ever done anything similar to the movie segment's tourists? Talk about your experience. 

8. How could you make this trip more interesting


Sunday, January 20, 2013

Patch Adams: Clown Care

Clown Care is a program in hospitals and medical centers involving visits from specially trained clowns. They are sometimes called "Clown Doctors" which is a trademarked name in several countries. These visits to hospitals have been shown to help healing patients with the positive power of hope and humor. There is also an associated positive benefit to the staff and families of patients. (Wikipedia)

 I. Work in pairs: Here are some techniques and facts clown therapies make use of. Decide why they are important and how do you think it helps with the therapy.

1. Clown Doctors attend specifically to the psycho-social needs of the hospitalised child but in some hospitals they also visit adults. They parody the hospital routine to help children adapt to their surroundings, they also distract from and demystify painful or frightening procedures.

2. Clown Doctors use techniques such as magic, music, storytelling and other clowning skills to empower children with doses of fun.

3. The human body has immediate reaction to healing when humor is involved.

4. Clown Doctors use parody to help demystify and simplify complicated medical procedures by performing their own "highly technical" clown medicine that includes red-nose transplants, kitty cat scans, chocolate milk transfusions, plate spinning platelet tests, and prescriptions of laughter.


 1. The atmosphere of fun and laughter can help children forget about the illness and the stress for a moment.

 2. That helps them deal with the range of emotions they may experience while in hospital: fear, anxiety, loneliness, boredom.

3. The healing power of humor and laughter combats stress, reduces pain by releasing endorphins (the body's natural painkiller), boosts the immune system by increasing the level of T Cells& lowering serum cortisol levels, helps promote a positive outlook, helps people to cope with difficult situations and helps to create bonds and therefore support between people, all of which aids the healing process.

4. It is easier to associate medical procedures while having fun and laughing.

 II. Watch the 1st segment from the movie Patch Adams and discuss the questions:

1. Describe the scene.

 2. What were some of the techniques you saw in Exercise 1 that he used in the movie scene?

3. How did the doctor react? What about the children?

 4. What kind of treatment are these children going through, in your opinion?

5. How can this doctor's approach make a difference in these children's lives?

 III. Watch the 2nd segment from the movie Patch Adams and discuss the questions.

1. Describe the scene.

 2. What are his plans for the fun hospital?

3. What is his partner's reaction to his idea? Why do you think she reacted like that?

4. Should the government invest in such kinds of hospitals? Why (not)