A signature program at FernLeaf is FernLeaf Travel Experiences. These trips are an EXCELLENT way for students to build independence, develop strong interpersonal skills and discover their unique passions and aptitudes. FernLeaf staff coordinate multiple different optional travel opportunities, domestic and overseas, throughout the year for our students. From March 10 through March 17, 2023 three of our teachers and a small group of students went on a field course study throughout the country of Belize. These blog posts are written by the students and will document their adventures and learning! See DAY 1 , DAY 2 , and DAY 3 posts here.
After packing the previous night we woke up energized and with a delicious breakfast to send us off from the TEC. We then headed to the city of Dangriga, and took a bathroom and snack stop at a local store. At the docks our group got fitted for snorkel gear and boarded a skiff that whisked us a way to another world, Tobacco Caye.
Upon arrival we were stunned by our picturesque home for the next two days. First we settled into island life by enjoying a wildlife filled swim. Even before donning our snorkel gear we were able to see more than 20 different species: spotted eagle ray, large skate, needle fish, barracudas, sea urchins, and more.
Next our group was treated to a delicious lunch of chicken fajitas which we happily devoured. A snorkel excursion around the south side of the ocean followed lunch. During our snorkel lesson we learned how to put on and clear your mask. Our guide also showed us how to dive and then clear our snorkel from water, then we set off to explore.
On our snorkel trip around the island we learned about the resident fish species as well as coral and plant life. We saw a well camouflaged scorpion fish in the shallows. We also observed a school of blue tang, the same fish as seen in 'Finding Nemo.' The coral here was not in great shape, because of a disease that has devastated corals all across the area.
Dinner held a delicious surprise after zucchini rice and sweet and sour pork, that being a Key Lemon Pie. We proceeded to hear a very engaging presentation about mangroves, coral reefs, and seagrass ecology. We learned they are all connected to create the marine ecosystem Belize has today. Our knowledge will be put to the test tomorrow as we hit many snorkel spots along the reef in the area.
Kedzie :0, Eloise >:), Kaden :/, Logan <3