National Geographic grantee Adjany Costa is a conservationist and ichthyologist (fish scientist) working in the Okavango River Basin. She has a master’s degree in marine biology and is working toward her Ph.D. She is from Angola and in addition to her work with National Geographic’s Okavango Wilderness Project she hopes to help create a marine reserve off the southwest coast of Angola.

Use the resources in this collection to prepare your students for her upcoming National Geographic Live! student matinee experience. Use the “Before the show” ideas to introduce students to Adjany Costa and the topics (wildlife, Okavango, conservation) that she will discuss during the show. Use the “After the show” ideas to extend the learning after the event has ended.

Before the Show:

  • Have students review Adjany Costa’s biography.

  • Download and print the provided maps of Angola, Botswana, and Namibia, or use the MapMaker Interactive, to explore the area where Adjany Costa works. 

  • Next, have students examine The Okavango Delta and Lifeline to a Desert Delta infographics to learn more about the wildlife in the region and the human pressures impacting the region.

  • Have students read the preservation and conservation of encyclopedic entries. After reading, ask: How are different types of conservation connected to one another? Can conservation be good and bad? What is the difference between conservation and preservation? 
  • As a class, watch the film clip Sand to Source (1:39) which provides a brief overview of the National Geographic Okavango Wilderness Project, whose website has the latest information about the team and their expeditions.

  • Learn more about deltas is with this article

  • Use the Freshwater idea set to find the perfect activity for your class to learn more about how to conserve this precious resource. 
  • Need more activities exploring freshwater ecosystems? Check out this collection!

  • Provide each student with a KWL Chart. Introduce the program they will attend and, who Adjany Costa, and offer a brief description of Adjany Costa's topic(s). Have students fill out the What I Know and What I Want to Know columns of the KWL Chart. Have them fill out the What I Learned column after the show.

  • Use the graphic organizer collection to select a graphic organizer to help your students organize their questions and new knowledge before, during, and after the program. For example: 

    • Download and print the T Chart. Have students label the left column with Questions I Have and the right column with Answers, and then conduct research about Adjany Costa and her topic ahead of the program. Have students record answers to their questions during or after the program. Have students conduct research to complete any unanswered questions for homework. Have each student share a question and answer with the class. 

    • Download and print the provided Five Ws Chart. Have each student bring their copy to the matinee program and take notes. Have students share and discuss their notes after the show.

 After the Show:

  • Use the Explorer Comparisons worksheet and have a class discussion to help students make connections between themselves and Adjany Costa. Distribute the worksheet to students before the presentation and review the directions with them. Review any terms with which they are unfamiliar with. After the presentation, have students share the notes that they took during the show. Have a class discussion about attitudes and skills and how students demonstrate them in their everyday lives. Have students record their personal examples on the worksheet.

  • Review the continents, countries, or areas that Adjany Costa presented. Ask: What continents, countries, or areas does Adjany Costa work in? Have younger students imagine that these places were characters in the stories that Adjany Costa shared. Ask: What role did place play in Adjany Costa’s story? Why was location important to the story? How did the characteristics of the place influence the story? Note: You may need to introduce the concept of place for your students before they can answer and discuss these questions. 

  • Discuss and define any unfamiliar terminology that Adjany Costa used. Ask: What vocabulary words did Adjany Costa use that were new to you? Invite volunteers to write the words on the board, and have the class define them as a group using the information they learned from the Adjany Costa or through research. If desired, have students record unfamiliar terminology during the show on one-half of a T Chart. Then, have them write the definitions on the other side following this class discussion.

  • Have a class discussion about the attitudes National Geographic explorers embody. Ask: What attitudes did Adjany Costa talk about today? In what ways does Adjany Costa demonstrate curiosity, responsibility, empowerment, and persistence in his work? Why do you think these attitudes are important for explorers? Students can use their Five Ws Chart for reference and a graphic organizer to organize their ideas.

Have a whole-class brainstorm on how students can make changes or support Adjany Costa’s work. Ask: What, if any, call to action did the Adjany Costa make? How can you implement any changes in your day-to-day life? What can we work on together as a group?


to transmit, transport, or carry.


person who works to preserve natural habitats.


to save or use wisely.


community and interactions of living and nonliving things in an area.


journey with a specific purpose, such as exploration.


having to do with a habitat or ecosystem of a lake, river, or spring.


to carry out plans.


to preserve observations with notes, drawings, photographs, audio or video recordings.


scientific observations and investigation into a subject, usually following the scientific method: observation, hypothesis, prediction, experimentation, analysis, and conclusion.


set of terms used in a specialized subject.


organisms living in a natural environment.