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A weblog designed to share Geography resources with students and colleagues

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Starting with starters...

Categories: Geography General

I don't know where to start tonight, have got so many things I want to blog about and probably won't manage them all. First of all, it was my annual trip to the Scottish Association of Geography Teachers conference in Edinburgh on Saturday, and as usual have learned a lot and want to try a lot of what I've seen. On top of that, I have been drawn to a couple of really nice resources which I'm trying to find a way to bring into lessons, so here goes...


I attended Ollie Bray's seminar as well as enjoying his keynote and picked up some useful things to think about as lesson starters. Ollie spoke about the search engine Bing having an image every day which is mostly to do with landscapes- to illustrate that, today's was the Yorkshire Dales, a location my s3 are studying right now. The picture has 3 hidden clues to the location and it's a great and simple way to introduce place. He also spoke about some great ways to get place into lessons through google maps. From something like smoke signal lesson objectives from the place you are studying to geogreetings spelling out children's names (suggested as a good home learning activity where students indentified countries where the letters come from, pick one country and create a profile), all the ideas were appealing as they were easily reconstructed to suit the needs of your own class. Something that Ollie used as a lesson ender to develop a knowledge of place was using google squared as a search tool, selecting cities from, for example, Europe and then sticking these into the classtools random name picker. Whichever name came out, he then opened (or let the students open?) it up in Google Earth and turn the layers on bit by bit to explore the place.
I am already thinking of using the smoke signals from the New Orleans superdome with lesson objectives for s1 tomorrow. We are about to start looking at the impact of hurricanes on people and landscapes, and will be using one of Tony Cassidy's activities again, this time around the BBC special from the time. I thought it would be good to start the lesson by showing the dome satelite photo showing before and after, so beginning at this location makes perfect sense.
Two other things outwith SAGT that I particularly liked were flickr's five card story and one word, both from a Tom Barrett presentation via Mark Warner's ideas to inspire site. I have created a 5 card story with no narrative (pictures above) which I'd like a class to try for homework to see if they can use geography as the theme to link all 5. I'm also going to warm up my s3 class for their limestory by using one word and asking them to write for 60 seconds in geographical terms about it. This is a great activity for any subject to encourage students to write. Finally, back to Ollie, I am really going to make a conscienscious effort to start using the news at the beginning of lessons, particularly with the new s1 rotations later this month
Right, that's it for tonight. I have a whole post to write about David Rogers session on citizenship through Geography, as I see loads of spaces in our present schemes of work which would benefit from the ideas he presented, and I am also hoping to write up something about assessment too, as I have really been challenged by something I've been asked about future assessment. I can think of lots of ways that either the students or myself as the teacher assess during lessons, but I wonder if the kids know they are being assessed? I wonder what they understand by that term?Would they feel the same or a greater sense of achievement if they were assessed in less traditional ways? I also wonder if my assessment of students carries enough rigour. I hope to talk to some classes about this in the coming week as I gather my thoughts on it.


At 6:19 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They all can be related to travel.
The coffee to stay awake during the journey during it you probably will feel hungry(spaghetti). Also the Underground ( London Underground ) and the road ( road signs) take you to your destination where you will stay (house). You usually go away for the weather or the views etc etc. (the weather)

At 12:44 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They all have signs of civilization and all have man made things in them


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