The island nation of Saint Lucia in the West Indies is one of our homeschool countries-of-the-week, so why not spend a few minutes today learning about one of Saint Lucia’s World Heritage Sites: the Pitons Management Area.
The two volcanic cones known as the Pitons are a natural symbol of the island of Saint Lucia:
Belonging to the Lesser Antilles, the volcanic island of Saint Lucia is located in the Eastern Caribbean Sea and surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean. The Pitons Management Area (PMA) in the Southwest of Saint Lucia is a multiple use conservation and management area of 1,134 hectares of land and 875 hectares of sea, respectively, totaling 2,909 hectares. The eponymous Pitons, two towering volcanic spires, are the major iconic landmark of the island. These spectacular twin pinnacles, Gros Piton and Petit Piton, rise side by side from the sea to 770 and 743 m.a.s.l., respectively. They are bridged by an inland ridge and tower above an accessible caldera-like formation known as the Qualibou Depression. The PMA finds itself within the Soufriere Volcanic Centre and encompasses a wide range of its diverse geological features, including a site of geothermal activity with fumaroles and hot springs, known as the Sulphur Springs. Petroglyphs and diverse artifacts bear witness of the Amerindian Carib population which historically inhabited what is now the PMA.
Despite the small extension there is a high diversity of terrestrial habitats, flora and fauna. The dominant vegetation is comprised of various forest types, including rare elfin woodland on the summits. Small, little disturbed patches of natural forests remain, preserved by the steepness of the land.
The Marine Management Area within the PMA is a strip of roughly 11 km long and about one kilometre wide along the shore. It comprises a steeply sloping continental shelf with healthy fringing and patch reefs covering more than 60% of the marine area, boulders and sandy plains. The diverse marine and coastal habitats harbour important marine life. Hawksbill turtles are seen inshore, and whale sharks and pilot whales offshore. (World Heritage Centre #1161)
You can find a gallery of additional photos of the Pitons Management Area on the World Heritage Centre’s website.
World Heritage Sites are cultural or natural landmarks of international significance, selected for recognition by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. More than 1000 such sites have been recognized in over 160 countries, and we feature one every Wednesday, drawn from one of our homeschool countries-of-the-week. You can find a complete list of World Heritage Sites online at the World Heritage Centre and in Wikipedia.
The World Heritage Centre also has a free and comprehensive World Heritage education kit for teachers, as well as a wonderful full-color wall map of World Heritage Sites, available for the cost of shipping. Why not add them both to your own homeschool library. 🗺
What world treasures have you explored in your homeschool this Leo Term? 😊
❡ Books in the running brooks: You can always turn to your River Houses almanac, atlas, and history encyclopedia for more information about any of our countries-of-the-week. The almanac has profiles of all the nations of the world on pages 752–859; the endpapers of the atlas are indexes that will show you where all of the individual national and regional maps may be found; the history encyclopedia includes national histories on pages 489–599; and you can find additional illustrations, flags, and other mentions through the indexes in each of these volumes. For an ideal little lesson, just write the name of the Weekly World Heritage Site on your homeschool bulletin board, find its location in your atlas, read the WHC’s brief description aloud, look at a picture or two, and you’re done. Over the course of the year, without even realizing it, your students will absorb a wealth of new historical, geographical, and cultural information. 🇱🇨
❡ The great globe itself: This is one of our regular Homeschool States & Countries posts featuring historical and natural sites of international importance. Download a copy of our River Houses World Heritage Calendar and follow along with us as we tour the planet, and add your name to our weekly mailing list to get great homeschool teaching ideas delivered right to your mailbox all through the year. 🌎 🌍 🌏