Ask Robert Roca, Director of Education and Science Programs at the New Bedford Whaling Museum, about their new inflatable mascot and you'll learn a lot about how this organization is impacting education in their community. "'Salt' is a 43-foot humpback whale," says Robert. "She will be used for special events and as part of a whale-focused education program that we are hosting for six elementary schools in New Bedford. She was first inflated for our Party for the Ocean event and two weeks later for our big summer fundraising gala.
"We see this inflatable as both a formal teaching resource for school programs and as a 'wow factor' for the general public. We are working to generate a high level of understanding and appreciation of whales. Words have their limitations, but a teaching tool like an inflatable wildlife tunnel most definitely conveys visually the enormous size and grace of whales. We can use our inflatable to catch people's attention when they walk into the museum or as the culminating activity of a school program to bring the lesson home.
"The results have certainly been visceral, in that people react pretty strongly, and are really impressed by the size of the whale and by the quality.
"Adults were as eager to climb inside the whale as children were!"
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