Wildlife education through camera and football game

How do you teach children to stop being afraid of wild animals?

This time, we had to dig deep into our bag of tricks and were able to win over some prominent supporters: a representative of the safari provider Great Plains Conservation and two football players from the Botswana club Sankoyo Bush Bucks.

All three had travelled especially to Matsaudi, where currently more than 30 children participate in the SAVE environmental education programme Education for Conservation.

The main aim of the day was to sensitize the children and other inhabitants of Matsaudi to the wildlife in their surroundings. The day started with singing and dancing together, after which the filming began. The children were accompanied by the camera the whole day: on their way to school, in class during lessons and during wildlife education.

At Education for Conservation, wildlife education is never just boring knowledge transfer but always packaged playfully. Just like on this day.

They competed in a group duel: Domestic animals against wild animals. One group wore masks and dog and cat, the other of lion and elephant. Now the children had to guess in each case: Which animal is wild and which is domesticated?

Sankoyo Bush Bucks

Matsaudi playgroup, Great Plains Conservation and two football players from the Botswana club Sankoyo Bush Bucks.

Mr. Letso from the safari provider Great Plains Conservation, as a wildlife expert, told stories about the individual animals, described the differences and explained their behaviour. Finally, he gave the children good tips on how to recycle waste, especially the many plastic drink bottles that all too often pollute the environment for ages.


Next, there was the highlight of the day, especially for the boys: the two players Kennedy Modisane and Johnson Kelediretse from the Sankoyo Bush Bucks club did a special football training with the children.

Run, score goals and run away fast. This symbolized the rules of the animal world, the eternal game between the hunters and the hunted. In the “hunt”, the children ran as fast as they could towards the target, scored a goal – translated: grabbed the prey. When running away, they slipped into the role of the hunted.

So on this day, the children were alternately lions and antelopes and thus experienced the deep rules of the wild. In a way that is probably much more memorable and lasting than dry lessons in class.