In this project 4th graders learn about the environment through different in-class and outdoor activities, and improve and decorate their schools and school surroundings using recycled materials. At the end of the school year SONATI holds a "green school competition" in which the winner schools are chosen. Green school project program (in Spanish)
The Green School project is financed with the help of Tierra Tours
Tour Operator & Nicaragua Travel Specialist.
Guided outdoor activities for school children
We offer different guided circuits for school children, in and around Leon:
Illegal wildlife trade; mammals & reptiles: We visit the local zoo in Leon and learn about the different animals kept there, many of which are unfortunately very rare in wild areas around Leon. We talk about the negative environmental impact of the illegal wildlife trade as well as its ethical dimensions and the long-term implications for biodiversity in Nicaragua. Location: Arlen Siu Park. Duration: 2 hours. Cost: free!
Birds at the edge of the city and the importance of river bank plants: We watch and learn about birds that can be found at the edge of Leon (an urban-rural habitat). We then walk along "rio chiquito" to the municipality's sewage treatment pools in order to understand the importance of plants in maintaining and cleaning our water resources. Location: "Tangara". Duration: 2 hours. Cost: free!
Plant ecology: We learn about the common plant species in and around Leon and about species from other ecosystems in Nicaragua. We learn about the adaptations of plant species to their habitats, with an emphasis on the tropical dry forest species. Location: Leon's botanical garden/ "CIMAC". Duration: 2 hours. Cost: entry cost to the botanical garden/ CIMAC- CS$ 10.00; guiding cost: free!
Insect ecology: We learn about the amazing world of insects, about many of their unique adaptations that help them survive in different ecological niches, and about the insects´ multiple and varied significance in ecological systems. Location: The entomology museum in Leon. Duration: 1 hour. Cost: Museum entry cost- CS$ 10.00; guiding cost: free!
Birds of the tropical dry forest: We watch the birds of the dry forest around Leon and learn about their ecology. Location: "La Gallina". Cost: public transportation- C$ 16.00; guiding cost- free!
Aquatic birds: We watch the birds of Palermo lagoon and learn about some of their unique ecology and adaptations to their aquatic habitat. Location: "Palermo". Duration: half a day. Cost: public transportation- C$ 16.00; guiding cost- free!
Mangrove swamp adventure: We go on an unforgettable, wet and muddy adventure hiking through a mangrove swamp. We view different mangrove species and learn about their special adaptations for this habitat. Location: Isla Juan Venado reserve. Duration: half a day. Cost: public transportation- C$ 20.00; guiding cost- free!
Cerro Negro - Into the most active volcano in Leon: We climb the volcano, go into its crater, see the fumaroles, and learn about its history and the phenomena of volcanism around Leon. Duration: half a day. Cost: transportation- variable, guiding cost- only C$ 5.00 per student.
Click here to see more photos from the outdoor circuits.
Environmental activities with kindergarten children
We carry out different activities that cover various environmental topics for kindergarten children. Cost- free!
Click here to see more photos from these activities.
Environmental leadership course for school children
This course consists of 2 weekly activities: environmental activity and English class. Also, the last two months of each year are dedicated to carrying out environmental projects in Leon. Children can apply to start this course while they are 9 to 10 years old. The course lasts for 7 years, until these children finish high school. The aim of the course is for students to have deep environmental knowledge and good English. Even more important, students cultivate passion and motivation to improve the environment around them. We empower these children to be the environmental leaders of tomorrow in Nicaragua! Cost- free!
This campaign consists of activities with kindergarten and school children. Each activity contains an exposition and a movie that explains the process and the problematic consequences of wild animal trafficking. Activities are given for free at schools.
We offer communities a series of up to 13 activities that focus on different issues: the environment, natural resources, renewable energy, compost, organic gardens, water, flora, fauna, volcanism, and personal environmental responsibility. We carry out these activities in different forms: presentations, games and outdoor activities, and excursions. Cost- free!.
In this course we visit nature's pearls around Leon- the beach, mangroves, and volcanoes Cerro Negro, Telica, Las Pilas, El Hoyo, San Cristobal, Cosiguina, Momotombo & Laguna Asososca. Most outings are 2 days of trekking and we camp in the outdoors under the stars. The course is available for the local public at any time of the year, depending on demand (minimum of 10 participants is required).
Participation cost: CS$ 10.00 to 80.00 per person per outing! (depends on age and program)
We prepare educational videos about different environmental topics. These videos are used by us, by the Nicaraguan Ministry of Education, and by other environmental organizations in different activities with children and adults.
The following videos are available online and at our office: Forest = Life: Video about the importance of the forest. The video focuses on the endangered tropical dry forest in western Nicaragua, its fauna and flora, its importance to humans, the problems caused once people destroy the forest, and the ways in which we can live together with the forest in a sustainable manner. Wild animal trafficking: Video about the terrible consequences of wild animal trafficking and about the cruel process of animal training in a circus. "One day in Leon": Video about the routine daily life of 2 children in Leon, Nicaragua. The children carry out different activities, one in a responsible manner and one in an irresponsible manner, toward the environment. This video is about responsible consuming and is intended to be used in activities with school children.
Tropical Dry Forest Festival in Leon
Each year in October, SONATI carries out the week-long Tropical Dry Forest Festival in Leon. The objective of the festival is to increase local awareness of the disappearing tropical dry forest in Nicaragua. The festival consists of different activities such as: a drawing competition for school children, expositions, guided outdoor courses about plants, mammals and birds, a guided excursion to a nature reserve, and an environmental parade. Participation in all the activities is completely FREE!
In this project we transform an abandoned and polluted piece of land in the center of Leon into an environmental park made of recycled materials. This park will be used for recreational purposes, while at the same time serving as an education center for recycling.
In this project we create decorative murals in Leon with environmental designs and messages made of recycled materials (mainly bottle caps). We carry out this project with the help of school children volunteers.
In this project we install solar lamps made of plastic bottles in poor houses in the city of Leon and in rural communities. These lamps significantly reduce the use of electricity during the daytime, saving money for the families. And, of course, they are super environmentally friendly! The cost of each lamp: $3.00
SONATI engages in different reforestation campaigns around Leon, using only native trees of the local tropical dry forest. So far, we have planted about 20,000 trees. While most of them have been planted in Los Madroños nature reserve, we have also planted at the foothills of Las Pilas Volcano and in Goyena community.