About Coral Live 2019: new STEM and geography live video lessons from Curaçao

Registration is open for schools around the world to connect their primary and secondary classes to research scientists, marine biologists and science communicators during AXA XL Coral Live. This is an opportunity to take students on a free virtual field trip to the Caribbean to build literacy, practice working scientifically, inspire STEM careers and develop environmental stewardship.


How does Coral Live work?

Jamie Buchanan-Dunlop, educator and expedition leader, will host 25 AXA XL Coral Live STEM and geography live video lessons from the Caribbean Research and Management of Biodiversity (CARMABI) station in Antilles' Curacao. The topics are animated by follow-along live investigations, interactive interviews with experts, and Ask-Me-Anything sessions.

Each day, between 11-15 November inclusive, will be dedicated to a topic: corals and restoration, ecosystems, threats to the reef climate change and ocean acidification, and adaptation.

To participate, primary and secondary school teachers will need to register which will help them download supporting classroom resources and subject knowledge updates.


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Why is learning about corals important?

Covering less than one percent of the marine environment, coral reefs are home to a quarter of marine species and are important nursery habitats to edible fish. Climate change, coastal development, pollution, and over-fishing are threatening these life-sustaining ecosystems and resources approximately one billion people depend on. Confronted with the daunting reality of destructive human impact, Coral Live and its collaborating science partner, CARMABI, engage young people at scale to learn about the vital role coral oceans play.

What is CARMABI?

CARMABI is short for the Caribbean Marine Biological Institute on the island of Curaçao, Dutch Caribbean. Founded in 1955, around the time dive gear was being invented, it continues to be the largest field station in the Southern Caribbean. Researchers or students who want to study Caribbean coral reefs, terrestrial systems or geology use these facilities for their science projects. The institute is currently visited by almost 250 scientists a year for research purposes and by various universities for courses related to coral reef ecology.

The field station still sits at its original, picturesque location at the opening of the Piscaderabay and reefs are found right in front of it. This is a prime location for researchers who can literary jump off the pier to being their investigations. Approximately 65 coral species can easily be found at any site around the island with Coral cover higher than 70%. The institute is also an active and founding member of the Association of Marine Laboratories of the Caribbean (AMLC), DCNA, Member of IUCN, and the Caribbean Conservation Association.

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Where is Curaçao?

Curaçao is an island in the southern Caribbean Sea, making part of one of three ABC islands, the other two being Aruba and Bonaire. It is situated about 37 miles (60km) north of the coast of Venezuela, and although it is part of the American continental shelf, it makes part of the Leeward Antilles in the Caribbean Sea. All three islands are part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands although they remain outside the European Union. Curaçao is an autonomous and self-governing constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The capital is Willemstad.

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Curaçao, in the Dutch Antilles © Encounter Edu
Making Coral Live possible

AXA XL Coral Live is generously funded for a fourth year by the AXA XL Oceans Education which is committed to impart ocean literacy, knowledge, and governance to today's children. It is also supported by the CARMABI research station which is an active supporter of education outreach for school-aged students.

Since 2009, AXA XL has been committed to supporting ocean science through the Catlin Arctic Survey, XL Catlin Seaview Survey and XL Catlin Deep Ocean Survey. Through its partnership with Encounter Edu, this has engendered the unique approach of developing education programs derived from the science delivered to children around the world. The collaboration has resulted in some of Encounter Edu's flagship live education programs, live Arctic Live as well as the underpinning award-winning and nominated resources, Frozen Oceans, Coral Oceans, and Submarine STEM.

Joined by a common vision, both AXA XL and Encounter are committed to ignite children's curiosity for the oceans, develop their literacy of them, inspire future STEM careers and have children becomes champions for environmental stewardship for the long term benefit of the planet's health.



For inquiries about the programme, access to speakers, and or participating schools during the event and please contact us on [email protected].