Ecology Trip: Desert Camping with Year 7 Students

Wadi Degla runs northwest from the mountains of the Eastern Desert to debouch into the Nile Valley at Maadi just south of Cairo. It travels through limestone country cutting a deep winding canyon in which floodwaters have carved the rock into spectacular shapes. Fifteen kilometers of the thirty-kilometer-long wadi and the adjoining area form the sixty square kilometers of the Wadi Degla Protected Area, declared in 1999. The Protectorate is intended to preserve the area and maintain a model of the varied habitats of the northern Eastern Desert. Wadi Degla is a part of the Eastern Desert and to comprehend its heritage, it is necessary to look beyond its boundaries and into the Eastern Desert. This comprehensive publication of Wadi Degla Protected Area, also introduces readers of all ages to the larger Eastern Desert region (egyptheritage.com). Every year we take Year 7 on an overnight desert camping trip to learn about the local flora and fauna, which compliments their ecology unit in science. It begins with a 5 km walk back into the desert. Once we arrive at our campsite, we set up tents. Next we break the students up into small groups where we teach each group about local ecology. This excursion was both educational, but what I enjoyed most was bonding with both my colleagues and our students – what a wonderful way to learn about science. See photos below.

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