Forest dept's novel effort to educate children

The Karnataka Forest Department, in collaboration with well-known artistes, will release a set of nursery rhymes to increase awareness about environmental protection among children.

Aiming to spread awareness on environmental protection, the Karnataka Forest Department is joining forces with a Grammy winner to capture the message in nursery rhymes.

The department is working with composer Ricky Kej and filmmaker Amoghavarsha J S to produce the first set of 26 nursery rhymes, besides an anthem for the Indian Forest Service (IFS), to mark the World Environment Day (WED) on June 5.

"We usually plant saplings and work on conservation initiatives, but the music this year is aimed at taking the message to more people, especially children," Shivaraj Singh, principal chief conservator of forests (PCCF), information and communication, said.

PCCF Punati Sridhar said the music would showcase the richness of Karnataka's forests and biodiversity. The album of rhymes, titled 'My Earth Album', is being made in 16 Indian languages, including English.

The  concept for the album is being derived from the 17 sustainable and humanitarian goals set by the United Nations. The department would release the first set of rhymes in English and Kannada during the WED celebrations. But Kej said the translations to other languages would take time.

While nursery rhymes are usually imported from other countries, the environmental verses will be uniquely Indian, teaching all required morals, Kej added. Singh said the department has begun work on how to reach the rhymes to the intended audiences.

Terming the IFS anthem as a gift to the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Amoghavarsha said the video would showcase places and officials, besides depicting the landscape and biodiversity. The idea is to change people's idea about their surroundings, he added.

The anthem and the rhymes will be made available for free on public domains. QR codes are also being created for the rhymes to make them immediately available on the mobile phones. The department is also talking to the education ministry on ways of taking the rhymes to the schools.

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Forest dept's novel effort to educate children

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