At last, the Higher course is finished. I was pretty pleased with our sand dune activity today, which I'm just going to detail here should I want to use it again next year:-
Three groups of terms on cards, starting with Dunes
Embryo, Fore, Yellow, Dune slack, Grey, Climax vegetation
Then, another group of cards with conditions,
Highest/Lowest PH, Windblown sand, Highest humus content, Little/ Complete ground cover, Dry, On/Near Water Table, High Soil moisture content
etc etc. Final Group are plants:
Restharrow, Couch Grass, Marram, Buckthorn, Sea Rocket, Reeds , Creeping Willow, Bluebell
and so on. Task begins with organising pupils with 'dune' cards into a 'transect' from sea to shore at the front of the classroom. After the correct order has been established, the 'conditions' are invited to attach themselves roughly to the correct 'dune' and finally the 'plants' card holders have to do likewise. When this is done, I put the Embryo and Fore Dune groups together, the Yellow dune and dune slack and the grey/climax as a pair. The groups were then asked to appoint a scribe who would also be allowed to question group members to create a summary of their area of the transect ( considering things like PH, salinity, humus, water content, plant adaption etc) before a member of the group then presents the summary to the class. It was a quick and easy way for me to see if the class got sand dune succession, which thankfully, they very much did! Well, the past papers tomorrow might tell me a little more about this...