Students Get Big Lesson on Whale Day - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Students Get Big Lesson on Whale Day

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Students from the Panama City Advanced School are seeing firsthand how whales eat, how they move, and just how big one can get.

"I decided to pick whales because you find them in every ocean in the world, they're very diverse, and also they're approachable," said Professor Cristina Rios at the FSU-PC. 

Professor Cristina Rios teaches ESOL courses which stands for English Speakers of Other Languages. Her final project for her students is Whale Day. 

"I think that sometimes we forget and we get so carried away with assessment that we never have fun and I think if we're gonna motivate the children and engage them, we need to set the example," said Rios. "And Whale Day is the perfect way."

Professor Rios says the mammal represents diversity, which is found amongst ESOL students.

"I think they're found in every ocean in the world, in the same way we have children from different nationalities, and it is very interesting to find out that they communicate too," said Rios. "So language is very important to them."

And while Rios' students are put to the test during Whale Day, the handful of students in grades K through 5 are leaving with an over"whaling" amount of information.

"I also didn't know that the fin of a whale is kind of like the fingerprint of your thumb," said Noah Biech, a fifth grader at Panama City Advanced School. "It's unique in a way."

"It's fun while you're still learning which is really cool," said third grader Janna Elzawahry. 

Rios started the Whale Day final project back in 2007.