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Brazilian Journal of Biology
On-line version ISSN 1678-4375
OBARA, AT. et al. Environmental education in the Upper Paraná River floodplain, municipality of Porto Rico (Paraná State), Brazil. Braz. J. Biol. [online]. 2009, vol.69, n.2, suppl., pp. 627-635. ISSN 1678-4375. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1519-69842009000300017.
Since 2003, researchers, faculty, graduate and undergraduate students from the State University of Maringá have been working alongside teachers from the state and local schools in the municipality of Porto Rico (Paraná State), located on the banks of the Paraná River. Their objective is to outline actions and strategies with the purpose of building methodological paths to insert environmental education into the school curriculum. Based on the action-research methodology, the group has developed the following programs: a) the Continuing Education Program in Environmental Education; b) the Development of Interdisciplinary Projects; c) the Insertion of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs); and d) the Production of Teaching Materials. The evaluations of the programs indicate that teachers have been able to gradually build a theoretical and methodological basis for environmental education while simultaneously growing into the role of teacher-researchers as they create the conditions to investigate their pedagogical practices, reflect upon them, share experiences, innovate, and make the teaching-learning process more significant. Allied to the advances in educational practices and with the aid of ICTs, the activities developed in the classroom, in the field and in the lab - all of which involve natural and cultural aspects of the region - have contributed to teachers' and students' better understanding of the ecological, cultural, social and economic value of the floodplain, and consequently, of the importance of preservation and management in order to maintain local biodiversity.
Keywords : teacher formation; middle and high school; Information and Communication Technology (ICT); Paraná River; floodplain.