Regional natural history expeditions - Tugan Yelge Tagzym Project
120 students and 30 teachers of the Nazarbayev Intellectual schools for the first time took part in the regional research and history expeditions within Tugan Yelge Tagzym Project on June 15-26, 2012. The project has been developed by the Autonomous Educational Organization “Nazarbayev Intellectual Schools” in order to kindle students’ interest to their motherland and raise the patriotic spirit. The Nazarbayev Intellectual schools exchange the routes of the trips to familiarize with and carry out research in the regions of Kazakhstan. Within the framework of the project the students visited North Kazakhstan, Akmola, East Kazakhstan, Almaty and Zhambyl regions and the city of Astana.
A group of 20 students of Grades 7, 8, 9 and 10 from each region selected based on the academic, creative, sport and other achievements participated in the expedition. The research expedition lasted for ten days. During this time students got acquainted with flora and fauna of the regions (rare plants and animals, including those listed in the Red Book), natural landscapes (mountains, rivers and lakes), national parks and nature reserves, historical sites and landmarks (architectural monuments), large industrial facilities, research centers, museums, theaters, well-known and eminent people of the regions, music, songs, legends, folk tales and traditions.
Schoolchildren from the Nazarbayev Intellectual school of Physics and Mathematics in Astana toured Ust-Kamenogorsk and sights of East Kazakhstan region. The young researchers travelled via Ust-Kamenogorsk-Ridder-Akbauyr route. Children paid a visit to the region’s largest hydroelectric power plant, Asia Auto machinery works, Ulbinsk machinery works and carried out a research at the local history and ethnographic museums, saw monuments to writers Abai and Pushkin and scientists Ushanov and Protozanov in Ust-Kamenogorsk. Participants of the expedition met with employees of Tauken ore mining company, researched peculiarities of the region rich in non-ferrous metals and studied biographies of historical figures in Ridder. They also had a chance to explore the natural wealth of the East Kazakhstan region at the West Altay natural reserve and cave drawings at Akbauyr monument near which one can find a unique ethno aul (village).
Schoolchildren from Semey toured Astana city and Akmola region. Their trip began at the Museum of the First President where they visited Nursultan Nazarbayev’s study and found out a lot of interesting facts about his childhood, youth and adulthood. They also went to Kultegin monument at the Eurasian National University. Rector of the university noticed lively interest of young visitors. Yerlan Sydykov personally greeted students and gave them valuable advice related to research work. In addition, he presented them with his book and a souvenir plate with university’s logo. The most exciting part of the trip, according to the students, was a tour around Kurgaldzhin natural reserve. The students were busy with finding rare plants and animals. A lot of scientific questions were raised. Deputy Director of Science of Kurgaldzhin natural reserve Alexander Koshkin gave answers to all the questions and told a lot of amazing stories about the region. The schoolchildren visited Yerementau history and ethnographic museum opened in honor of Bogenbay Batyr, Kabanbay Batyr mausoleum 35 km away from Astana and Alzhir ethno-memorial complex in Akmola region. They also paid homage to Kazakhs who died of famine in 1930s and studied highly-valued materials of the national archive.
Students of the Nazarbayev Intellectual school of Astana had a wonderful opportunity to visit and study the work of educational, cultural and innovative-industrial complexes of Zhambyl region during their trip. The first stop on the research route was one of the most ancient cities in Kazakhstan – Taraz. The students worked on a dig, attended unique places of interest – museums and archives, auls (villages) where national traditions and customs are still preserved. They witnessed the making of dombra (Kazakh national music instrument) and hunting with golden eagle. Residents of Zhualy and Ornek villages and students’ peers cordially received the NIS students. They competed in team and national sports. The schoolchildren arranged such campaigns as ‘Bulak Korsen, Kozin Ash’, ‘Karttar Zhasyp Koigan Khatpen Ten’ and ‘Salauatty Urpak’ within the meetings with the older generation of the region. The students were lucky to find out about life and creative work of living classic author Sherkhan Murtazy. They also had a meeting with Director of Taraz Recreation Park Aidina Khanum who told about challenges of leisure business.
An expedition of students from Nazarbayev Intellectual school of Ust Kamenogorsk traveled to the town of Ushtobe in Almaty region. They visited the Korean ethno-cultural center where they familiarized with the history, culture and traditions of Korean people. The students spent the second and the third days of the expedition at the Ili-Alatau State National Park. They also saw Saki burial mounds, an ostrich farm, Turgen gorge and a trout farm. The expedition surveyed historical places, architectural monuments and landscape of Northern Zhetysu while touring the town of Issyk. The next stop of the expedition was in Taldykorgan where young researchers went sightseeing. They found out interesting facts about the history of the city, saw monuments to Ush Ata-Balpyk Bi, Yeskeldi Bi and Kabyliss Zhyrau. They heard a story about the fate of a well-known Kazakh writer Ilyass Zhansugurov at his house museum. They also went to the town of Tekeli to see the nature, explore the history and attend industrial objects Tekeli Granit and Kazakhstan Tekstilain. The students visited the museum of Akyn Sara, Tamshy Bulak spring and Kapal Arassan health resort in Kapal village.
‘Young followers of Columbus’ from Nazarbayev Intellectual school of Kokshetau turned their steps to Semey in East Kazakhstan region. They surveyed Yamyshev Gates that remained after the Semipalatinsk fortress was destroyed, monument to the victims of Semipalatinsk nuclear testing area and Museum of Arts of the Nevzorovs. The students attended Alash Arystary Museum where they found out about dramatic fates of leaders of Alash Orda Government that was formed in 1917 – Alikhan Bokeikhanov, Akhmet Baitursynov, Myrzhakyp Dulatov, etc. They also paid a visit to Abai museum. While surveying the Semey Ormany natural reserve the researchers faced the ecological problems of the region. Due to forest fires and illegal forest clearance the ecological problem of the unique pine forest is high on the agenda. The students witnessed how young pine trees take roots. They became acquainted with the bus assembly technology at SemAZ Ltd. The children spent one of the most exciting and informative days in Zhidebai – where a great Kazakh writer Abai was born. They attended Abai and Shakarim memorial complex and Murat Auezov museum in Borili.
Students from Taldykorgan made a trip around Kokshetau-Burabai-Srymbet route that was mapped out by their peers from the Nazarbayev Intellectual school in Kokshetau. The expedition visited museums, industrial objects, sport complexes in Kokshetau, Burabai resort, Karasai and Agyntai batyrs memorial complexes, Aiganym country estate (that belonged to Shokan Ualikhanov’s grandmother) and archeological excavations of Botai village in Aiyrtausk district of North Kazakhstan region. The children were happy to see a lot of historical monuments, unique nature, flora and fauna of the region that will be reflected in their research.
The Tugan Yelge Tagzym expeditions will become a tradition. Young researchers, the best students of the Nazarbayev Intellectual schools, will make enthralling trips around the most beautiful and mysterious corners of the country next year.