My 4th graders were enthralled with the experience of sitting both outside and inside the humpback whale named Nile. Cynde's vast knowledge of whales and their ocean environment provided meaningful connections to our classroom lessons. The fact that Nile is a life-size model of a real whale including fluke patterns and scars from fishing gear made this activity truly memorable for us all. --Linda Bowden, Glen Urquhart School 4th grade teacher, Beverly, MA
Cynde spent the afternoon in Abington with her life size, inflatable replica of Nile, a 43-foot, humpback whale that feeds off the coast of MA during the summer season. We had a full house with kids ranging in age from K-6th grade. Cynde had the whole group together for the first 25 minutes to learn all about whales (how they eat, communicate, etc). We then broke out into three groups according to age for the rest of the program and kids got to venture inside of Nile to learn more about his body, play recycling games, decorate whale tails, and checkout all kinds of hands-on-science (whale teeth and what not). It was a great afternoon of science and learning about how to be an ocean advocate. Cynde and her team were terrific to work with, and she has a special gift to fit a 43 foot whale into just about any space. A simply fantastic program for libraries, schools and museums. --Lauren Budd, Children's Librarian, Abington Library, Abington, MA
Cynde and Nile visited our local Elementary School speaking to grades 2-5. Over two hundred students and teachers were completely enthralled watching Nile grow into a full life size humpback whale! I heard only positive comments from the teachers after the program. How excited their students were to hold the whale artifacts and go inside the whale and how remarkable Cynde was in dealing with and educating the children about whales. Cynde also set up several stations about whales in the library the next day. Several children from the elementary school came to the library with their younger siblings wanting to learn more! Great program for schools and libraries. Barbara Twigg, Branch Manager, Sharpsburg Library, Sharpsburg MD.
Cynde has a wonderful way of engaging her audience. She shares personal experiences with whales in an interesting way. The use of video as well as audio materials during the presentation reaches all learners. The children are able to touch whale related materials and also have the exciting opportunity to enter a life-size whale. It is a fascinating experience for both students and teachers. --Cathy Craven, Kindergarten Teacher, Topsfield, MA
Hi Cynde, the children, as well as staff, were all so excited with your presentation. But the real thrill for many came when they had the opportunity to watch Nile grow to life-size before their very own eyes. Added excitement came as they slipped off their sneakers and walked around Nile as you pointed out different parts of a whale, and then again with the opportunity to actually enter deep inside her to view the blow hole, baleen, vertebra, organs and even the "poop shoot!" This amazing event was something that they not only spoke about for days; some even wrote about their experience and how it was one of the "coolest" activities they had experienced in first grade! Interestingly, when tie-dying shirts the following week for a field trip adventure...the designs on the light blue background reminded them of not only jellyfish, but "barnacles" and a "humpback whale bubble net!" Thank you so much for sharing your experiences and expertise about these wonderful mammals that can be found or seen right in the waters off the coast of our own state: Massachusetts. --Nancy Kullis, Mary Rowlandson Elementary, Lancaster, MA