Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) conducted a workshop, "Implementation of the Merdeka Curriculum P5 Module on Mangrove Ecosystems for elementary school teachers on the Coast of Ogan Komering Ilir (OKI) Regency" at SDN 1 Sungai Lumpur, Pesisir District. OKI, South Sumatra, on 6 – 9 November 2023. This training is a collaboration between YKAN, the OKI District Education Office, and the South Sumatra Education Quality Assurance Center (BPMP) to increase awareness of the importance of the mangrove ecosystem in the OKI coastal area.
Followed by 12 teachers from nine elementary schools (SD), participants received briefings on the Merdeka Curriculum, an introduction to the mangrove ecosystem on the OKI coast (classroom and field materials), sharing of the implementation of the P5 Module, and technical aspects of how to implement the P5 Module with students in the classroom with the students—elementary school.
This practical trial was carried out at SDN 1 Sungai Lumpur. Even though this school is located in the outermost region of South Sumatra, students are used to learning with the Merdeka Curriculum scheme, which encourages learning through focus group discussions and presentations in front of the class. The material that has just been presented can live among students through interactive discussions between students and teachers, not just one way.
Lidya, an elementary school teacher from SDN 1 Sungai Lumpur, said, "I agree with this module being implemented here. "Even though the students live around mangroves, many of them still don't know the importance of mangroves."
"YKAN packages the supporting content for the P5 module with local nuances, which facilitates the delivery process from teachers to students. One is an animated video as reference content, which is prepared using the local language, Malay Ogan. "Illustrations of settlements and natural environments are made as similar as possible to those around where the students live so that students feel more connected to the message conveyed," explained Mariski Nirwan, YKAN's Senior Manager of Coastal Resilience.
Misdamayanti, an elementary school teacher from SDN 1 Sungai Lumpur, also admitted that showing animated videos like this (with local nuances) makes it easier for students to understand."
The importance of introducing mangrove ecosystems in OKI
Located around 130 kilometers from Palembang, Sungai Lumpur Village, the most populous village on the OKI coast, is relatively difficult to reach and needs more basic facilities such as electricity and water. The most prolonged coastal ecosystem in South Sumatra is dominated by mangrove forests, with an area of 40,020 hectares (YKAN, 2023). Local communities depend most of their livelihoods on nature, such as marine products and coastal landscapes, which they cultivate into ponds.
However, based on a study conducted by YKAN in 2022, the number of mangrove forests on the OKI Coast has decreased by more than 8,000 hectares in the last three decades. One is caused by converting mangrove land in protected forest areas into ponds. Therefore, YKAN, through the Mangrove Ecosystem Restoration Alliance (MERA) Program, is trying to introduce a sustainable, integrated conservation strategy to protect OKI's remaining coastal mangrove forests. The development of PLH related to the mangrove ecosystem on the OKI coast for elementary school students, who will become environmental stewards in the future, is part of the MERA strategy.
For this reason, YKAN is collaborating with the OKI District Education Office, BPMP South Sumatra, and the South Sumatra Teacher Mobilization Center (BGP) to develop PLH through the P5 Independent Curriculum scheme with the theme of a sustainable lifestyle. This scheme gives teachers and schools the freedom to invite students to learn things around them and create simple projects to solve problems in their environment. Preparing the P5 module with a local nuance and training for elementary school teachers is one of the essential achievements of YKAN's partnership process with education partners over the past year.
Kardinal, Assessor/Widyaprada Associate Expert BPMP South Sumatra, revealed that the partnership model carried out by YKAN with education stakeholders on the OKI coast could be an example that could be replicated in various other contexts. There are multiple problems around schools whose solutions can be started from small things, one of which is through projects from the P5 Independent Curriculum scheme.
The P5 module on mangrove ecosystems will begin to be implemented on a limited basis in several schools on the OKI coast in semester 1 of 2024. During that period, YKAN and educational partners will work with school supervisors to monitor and evaluate the module's implementation. The results of this evaluation will be helpful for YKAN and education partners to develop and perfect this module before it is implemented in all elementary schools in the OKI coastal area.
Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) is a scientific-based non-profit organization that has been present in Indonesia since 2014. With the mission of protecting lands and waters as life support systems, we provide innovative solutions to realize the harmony of nature and humans through effective natural resource management, prioritizing a non-confrontational approach, and building a network of partnerships with all stakeholders for a sustainable Indonesia. For more information, visit ykan.or.id.