Thank you, New Zealanders, for your overwhelming support.
We now have 7000 subscribers — twice as many as our target — and all the shop copies we printed have been sold. Response to the first issue has been fantastic. Some of the scores of letters we have received from readers are printed on pages 7 and 8.
One of the most exciting responses comes from Horowhenua, where a primary school has been using our first issue as the basis of its social studies programme. Colin Dunn, headmaster of Foxton Beach Primary School, took a class set of copies of the magazine and the Form One and Two students have been working through the stories one by one.
The children love it! And as a result of reading the article on Goat Island marine reserve, they plan to take action to preserve the Foxton Beach area.
Obviously Foxton Beach School takes geography seriously, and this became even more apparent when we visited the school and found a full-scale telescope in the schoolyard. Foxton Beach is the only primary school in the country, we believe, with its own observatory.
We heard from another teacher that there was more information on our rock pool poster than in the education syllabus resource material.
It’s feedback like this that makes us confident we’re heading in the right direction with New Zealand Geographic. We sincerely believe that this is one teaching resource that should be in every school.
And not only in schools, of course, but in the home. New Zealanders are becoming more and more aware of the global threats facing Planet Earth, and we are convinced that the subject of geography must take centre stage in the education of parents and children alike.
New Zealand Geographic has been launched with just that purpose in mind. We hope that each article, photograph, illustration and poster will in some way improve our appreciation of New Zealand and its people. And beyond that, to build respect for the planet and all its inhabitants.
We are proud that our journal is already being used as a learning tool to make geography exciting and relevant to schoolchildren in New Zealand.
Who knows, after reading this issue our Foxton fans may all become amateur beekeepers!