video: Visiting the Congo to write Endangered
New York, NY USA
SCHOOL VISITS: 3rd - 12th
I start by talking about what makes an ape an ape, and then go into the essential differences between bonobos and chimps and how they can help us examine our own human origins. Then I share my sideways entry into primatology, it's onto videos of my time in Congo and some candid moments I filmed with the irrepressible bonobos. I link the apes' physiological adaptations with their culture, all through the lens of how a novel (Endangered) gets structured.
Year(s) of participation: 2018
A4ED school visit photos & blurbs:
2018 at ST. DAVID'S SCHOOL in New York, NY USA and SOMERS MIDDLE SCHOOL in Somers, NY USA
ELIOT FUELS CONSEVERATION AT ST. DAVID'S AND SOMERS
I loved meeting with the boys of St. David's School. This was my first A4ED event, and I was pleasantly surprised that the students chose to support Animal Legal Defense Fund, a non-profit that protects animals in agriculture and captivity through the court system. It's less romantic than other charities that involve feeding baby apes, but vitally important work.
At Somers, after large group sessions about how I came to write Endangered, and the conservation issues the bonobos are facing, I got to run a writing workshop with a select group of seventh and eighth graders. We went over the basic buildings blocks of story, and I was really impressed with the model narratives the kids came up with. Money donated to Ape Action Africa will support the non-profit's education efforts at its gorilla sanctuary in Cameroon.