School teachers who participated in an exercise aimed at improving their teaching methods found, to their pleasure, that learning could be made engrossing.

The teachers were exposed to the joys of teaching through a project by the Kuruvila Jacob Initiative for Promoting Excellence in School Education and the Care Earth Trust.

Sharing their experiences on Tuesday at the launch of a resource manual on biodiversity, the teachers said that like their students, they were on a journey of discovery – learning to appreciate plants, animals and birds in their everyday surroundings. 'They have created herbal gardens in small patches in their schools and carried home the message of conservation.

Teachers said the five-day workshop taught them to appreciate the need for recycling, reducing garbage and creating pleasant surroundings.

Mohan Varghese Chunkath, additional chief secretary, environment and forests department, who launched ‘Green Guru’, a resource manual on biodiversity, said practical knowledge will go a long way in enthusing students to take up environmental sciences and biology.

AJT Johnsingh, former dean, Wildlife Institute of India, who received the first copy, praised the teachers’ initiative.

He urged people to protect the small pockets of forest in the city and create a healthy environment.

“Conservation is a collective effort and everyone has to contribute to it,” he said.

S. Viji, core committee member of the Kuruvila Jacob Initiative explained that the project was funded by a group of alumni of the Madras Christian College School, who had set up the initiative in honour of their headmaster, Kuruvila Jacob.

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