Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Why We Need To Teach Geography

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Spatial And Causal Relationships

Why we need to teach geography.mov

Studying geography concurrently with social studies can also improve students understanding in math and science. Geography can be a gateway for students to understand spatial and causal relationships. By developing a sense of the interconnection of place, students can use these same global understandings to thinking like a mathematician and critical scientist.

Ten Geography Tools For Primary Children

1. Every child should have easy access to a world globe. Whether your child is formally learns at home or in school, having a world map in the proper shape is vital for children to understand our world, its land masses, and geographic locations. We often run to get our globe while simply reading picture books or having discussions as a family. A must-have.

2. We love the raised felt in the Montessori Map Work book. The pages are simple and uncluttered and teach the continents of the world.

3. My absolute favorite geography book for children is the Lift-the-flap Picture Atlas. I love that it discusses all different cultures in bite size chunks of information. Children love to lift flaps, and using fine motor skills to make this movement will help children retain the information better. I highly recommend this for grades Preschool through fifth grade or higher its even fun for adults to read!

4. We also love the Childrens Picture Atlas. There is so much information about differences in land forms and cultures. There are also suggestions for how you can extend your reading to work at home for activities such as cooking, dressing, or listening to music. Each continent is filled with information about cultures and food and animals.

Why Do We Teach Geography And Why Should Students Study It

Of course its not all about colouring maps but theres a reason why many adults think it is, says Ian Stock, and its one thats worth exploring

Early dates can be trepidatious affairs especially when one party is a teacher. Too many memories of misspent youth? Perhaps thats why so many pedagogues marry each other

At any rate, the person who subsequently became my wife nearly stepped on an early mine when she said, Geography? All I remember is learning capital cities and colouring a lot of sea! I didnt hold it against her.

My specialism is often the unfortunate recipient of such misconceptions the legacy of a particular way of interpreting it during those critical classroom years.

Another chance comment recently got me thinking about how subjects change over time and how that affects both the way they are taught, and the understanding that the population at large goes away with.

Such impressions can last a lifetime.

It is perhaps useful, therefore, to reflect on what we teach and how we teach it. So here is a little potted history of geography, with my own teaching fitted in.

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How To Land A Spot At One Of These Tuition

The links between geography and other subjects are endless. In literature, for example, consider the connection between John Steinbecks Grapes of Wrath and the Dust Bowl, or a history lesson on Machu Picchu and the engineering feats of the Inca people. One surveyed educator said: All subjects relate because everything we study is connected to a placewhether you look at the carbon cycle across the globe or how ancient Koreans created celadon porcelain glaze.

This school year alone, at least half of the surveyed educators said they plan to incorporate geography into their curricula, and many with a focus on tough-to-teach topics such as racial injustice, climate change or the COVID-19 pandemic.

So, why is learning about geography so critical to educators? One participant said, Learning about our world allows us to learn and express empathy, and it builds kindness in humanity. Another educator phrased it this way: Because of the scope and breadth of what geography encompasses, students need to see the connections between all of these to better understand the world, its cultures, its connections and its beauty.

A mural created by students at Smithtown High School East in St. James, N.Y., which theyve … requested to hang near storm drains throughout their Long Island community to help raise awareness.

A mural, created by students at Smithtown High School East in St. James, N.Y., hangs in the local … town hall. Photo courtesy of Tim Needles.

Study Geography To Understand Our Planet

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Studying geography can provide an individual with a holistic understanding of our planet and its systems. Those who study geography are better prepared to understand topics impacting our planet such as climate change, global warming, desertification, El Nino, water resource issues, among others. With their understanding of political geography, those who study geography are well-positioned to comprehend and explain global political issues that occur between countries, cultures, cities and their hinterlands, and between regions within countries. With instant global communications and media coverage of geopolitical hotspots around the world on twenty-four-hour news channels and on the Internet, the world might seem like it has gotten smaller. Yet centuries-old conflict and strife remain despite huge technological developments over the past few decades.

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Honor A Connection To Nature

With ongoing discussions of climate change, students should deepen their understanding of geography to fully understand the challenges of living in a constantly adapting natural environment. Many people are already aware of “the butterfly effect” on weather, but climate changes in one region of the world can have profound effects on world trade or social movements. Students need to understand how their own choices can lead to a butterfly effect in their immediate world. By applying a detailed understanding of geography, students can build a sense of place and how humans affect and can be affected by nature. Give your students the opportunity to research waste in different countries and its effect on nature, or visit a recycling facility to help them grasp real-world applications of their actions.

Photo: istock.com/LightFieldStudios

Teaching The Art Of Geography

This post was written by educator Sandra Turner.

My life and teaching practice has been made richer by the study of people, place, and the natural world. This insatiable curiosity to see and discover more has cultivated a zeal for travel, photography, and diving. My journey is always crafted with the unfolding of a wall-sized paper map given to me by a world traveler. Oddly to some, my choice of destination is largely driven by how remote the location and how much of the ocean surrounds it. I then immerse myself into learning everything I can about its people, points of interests, landscapes, culture, and history. My favorite part of the journey are the life-long memories that I return home with that get stitched into stories while sharing photos.

To me, geography means intellectual expanse and awakening. Our planet is an inexhaustible exploration to behold. It can begin right where we are! I became a National Geographic Certified Educator to share my adventures with my students and teach them what I call, the art of geo.

National Geographic Education : Geography helps build bridges and create connections. How do you see this play out in your work?

NG: How is geography relevant to 21st-century thinking and what might we do differently with geography in mind?

NG: Where/how do you see geography playing out in the news/world today?

NG: How can we connect geographic thinking to solving the worlds most pressing problems?

NG: What geography fact fascinates you the most and why?

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How To Teach Geography To Children

I am excited to share with you our tools for kindergarten geography today. We use multiple books and hands on items to help my children become aware of our world and where we are located on the map. I have collected many additional tools that may be of interest to you as you teach your child about geography.

My children are very interested in our physical world and in the cultures that surround us. Its important for children to understand that the world is round, there are land masses surrounded by bodies of water, and that people of all different cultures live in various areas of our amazing Earth!

Physical geography involves the physical properties of the earth.

Cultural geography involves human cultures and society.

In teaching geography to children, it is important, even from a young age, for a child to feel and experience the differences in the globe and raised books. Experiences can also be enhanced through exploring different foods, dress, music, and tradition. Maria Montessori developed her method of teaching during a tumultuous time in our history, during the World Wars at the beginning of the 21st century. She felt that if children understand and accept other cultures and embrace geographical properties for those cultures, than children could become productive and peaceful members of society.

Geography Teaches How To Navigate Our World

Why we need to teach geography trimmed

History is the study of the past, but geography is the study of the past, present and future.

Heffernan postulated that the attacks of 9/11 caused a rebirth of the study of geography, because we needed it to make sense of what happened.

As we began to process who had done this, a more important question emerged. Why? Why did people want to do this to us? Heffernan said in his article, explaining that the answers to those questions came from a better understanding of geography and cultures.

Because geography looks at people and culture and the whys and hows of what is taking place, it has the power to answer tough questions, S. Kay Gandy explained in a 2007 article for NCSS.

It is a subject that deals head-on with the globally integrated world we live in and the big issues of sustainability, migration, refugees and asylum seekers, global inequalities, population and climate change, said Tim Costello in a .

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References And Eric Resources

The following list of resources includes references used to prepare this Digest. The items followed by an ED number are in the ERIC system and are available in microfiche and paper copies from the ERIC Document Reproduction Service . For information about prices, contact EDRS, 3900 Wheeler Avenue, Alexandria, Virginia 22304 telephone numbers are 703-823-0500 and 800-227-3742. Entries followed by an EJ number are annotated monthly in CIJE , which is available in most libraries. EJ documents are not available through EDRS however, they can be located in the journal section of most libraries by using the bibliographic information provided below.

Buggey, JoAnne, and James Kracht. “Geographic Learning.” In ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SOCIAL STUDIES: RESEARCH AS A GUIDE TO PRACTICE, BULLETIN 79, edited by V. A. Atwood. Washington, DC: National Council for the Social Studies, 1985.

Council of Chief State School Officers . GEOGRAPHY EDUCATION AND THE STATE. Washington, DC. Council of Chief State School Officers, 1988. ED number will be assigned.

Grosvenor, Gilbert. “Geographic Ignorance: Time for a Turnaround.” NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE 167 : 6.



Saveland, Robert A. “Map Skills Around the World.” SOCIAL EDUCATION 47 : 206-210. EJ 278 675.

We Are Teaching Geography Wrong

teaching kids geography. Image: Weblio

Geography is not complicated. A lot of mistakes and misconceptions can be avoided by opening a map.

I remember in school learning how to read a map and about the different maps .

Even in the age of GPS and Google Earth, maps are awesome.

How many times do you open a science fiction and fantasy novel and the first thing you see is a map?

A map indicates the story will involve a quest, dueling kingdoms, multiple settings, and epic storytelling.

In real life, maps indicate known lands, unknown lands, travel and trade opportunities, and yes, just like in fiction, dueling empires.

Geography wallpaper, Pixabay

The biggest misconception about geography is that it is about the memorization of random facts. It is not.

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Primary Geography Curriculum Making

To help children to understand their powerful geographical knowledge powerful because it helps to empower their lives we, their teachers, need to recognise and appreciate that we are incorporating and teaching geography in topics and to ensure that the children know that they are doing geography . Children can then meaningfully develop and deepen their understanding and application of geographical knowledge and skills. This is liberating for us as teachers and for children, and is the basis for good primary geography curriculum making creating geographical studies that have meaning and value for children.

Geography curriculum making is premised on teachers and children having agency in developing their geographical studies within subject or cross-curricular topics . Teachers who are good at creating their geography curriculum use a wide variety of the subjects pedagogical repertoire. They listen to and are actively engaged as a critical friend to childrens perspectives and ideas, valuing and engaging with childrens personal geographies. They provide an informed sense of direction in and for childrens graphical studies, as the person with clarity about where their geographical learning needs to go teachers hold the curriculum map for their learning, provide the overview of its landscape, and discern and help their children select effective routes to realise their potential.

What Gets Tested Gets Taught

Why We Use Photography

Last year, geography education also received another blow from an unexpected source. The National Assessment Governing Board, which sets policy for NAEP exams, prefaced its 2018 geography framework as well as all previous versions as guided by the conviction that a broad knowledge of geography is an essential part of a full education.”

“This is particularly true at a time when the lives of nearly all our citizens are deeply affected by what happens throughout the world,” it warned.

It came as a surprise then, when NAGB announced last year it had eliminated geography from the testing schedule for the time being.

We were completely blindsided, said Tina Heafner, president of the National Council for the Social Studies. We had no idea that they were changing the assessment schedule.

Lesley Muldoon, executive director of NAGB, said budget constraints forced the board to remove and scale back assessments in some subjects to focus more resources on reading and mathematics, the only two subjects Congress specifically mandated for NAEP testing. Muldoon tried to allay anticipated concerns about the message NAGBs decision might send to state education departments.

“The value of a particular subject should not and does not depend on whether NAEP measures it,” she said in a .

Not all geographers share that confidence. They fear by eliminating it from NAEP testing, states and districts will have even less incentive to include geography in an already overcrowded curriculum.

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Effectiveness Of Instruction Maps And Spatial Concepts Evaluating Geographic Learning

Geography, like history, is not defined by the uniqueness of its content rather, both gain their distinction by the way in which they organize and analyze the data they collect regarding particular aspects of the human experience. History compares and contrasts information within the framework of chronology, while geography organizes its information within the context of the spatial environment. Today, the focus of geographic inquiry is generally conceded to be on spatial interactions, that is, the geographer seeks to understand the significance of human activity within a spatial framework. Where historians report their findings primarily through written narratives, geographers present their data primarily through the construction of maps.

Until the advent of the Progressive movement in American life, beginning in the decades following the Civil War, geography was taught as a separate subject. Memorization of the names of important cities, physical features, and relational facts dominated instruction. Recognition of the temporary shelf life of that kind of information taught in rote fashion led Progressive educators to deemphasize the acquisition of facts and to instead emphasize the role of reasoning and problem solving in learning. Under this program, the traditional subjects of geography, history, and civics were fused. In this context the teaching of geography began to lose its identity as a unique area of study.

If They Teach You To Memorize Capitals Flags Names Of Rivers And Mountains They Are Teaching You Geography Wrong Geography Is About Discovery

If they would teach geography as a scavenger hunt or a search game, it would be more exciting.

Open a world map. How many continents do you see? How many oceans?

Can you find the biggest desert? How many countries do we border? Can you find where does the Nile starts and ends?

Now, that is how you should teach geography. Screw the memorization. Make it interactive.

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Steps In Planning A Lesson

A lesson plan is the instructors road map of what students need to learn and how it will be done effectively during class time.

Herbartian steps for lesson planning are as follows:

  • Preparation
  • This method is adaptable to many different settings .


    Teachers not only use demonstrate specific learning concepts within the classroom, they can also participate in demonstration classrooms to help improve their own teaching strategies, which may or may not be demonstrative in nature.


    • Team teaching involves a group of instructors working purposefully, regularly, and cooperatively to help a group of students of any age learn.
    • Teachers together set goals for a course, design a syllabus, prepare individual lesson plans, teach students, and evaluate the results.
    • They share insights, argue with one another, and perhaps even challenge students to decide which approach is better.

    More Than Labeling Countries On A Blank Map

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    As of 2019, just 20 states require some geography for high school graduation, according to the Education Commission of the States, but most of them give districts wide latitude to decide what to cover and how to teach it. For example, North Dakota and Oklahoma say only that geography may be included in social studies requirements, while in Texas, Virginia and New Hampshire, students can meet the requirement with either geography or world history.

    Often geography is folded into one of the other disciplines making up social studies civics/government, history or economics. Only six states require students to take a standalone geography class to graduate.

    A key challenge, said León, is the public doesnt understand geography and that trickles down to our policymakers and the people who are ultimately put in charge of making these decisions.

    Geography often evokes middle school memories of identifying countries on a blank map, naming the longest river in Asia or memorizing the 50 state capitals the sort of game-show knowledge that takes a minute to find online.

    But geography is really the study of places and the relationships between people and their environments, explains National Geographic.

    Geography seeks to understand where things are found, why they are there and how they develop and change over time. Gilbert Grosvenor, former chairman and president of the National Geographic Society, has said geography allows us to analyze the past and anticipate the future.

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