Love the enthusiasm, but put your hands down now, please.
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
1y ago
“Tom, what do you think? Why has the writer used this term to describe this character?” Words to make your heart sink. Why has the teacher asked me? I haven’t got my hand up. “Erm… I’m not sure, Miss.” “Tom, can we have 5 minutes at the end, please?” Even more words to make your heart sink. This is a brief extract of a year 10 English lesson. I’m Tom and I’m the young man sitting in the classroom, coasting through my English lessons, half reading the book, half day-dreaming about the cricket match I’ve got at the weekend. September of Year 10, I had a new English teacher. And she made it clea ..read more
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Steve Waugh, James Vince and teaching
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
I hope you’ll indulge this slightly off-piste post. Let’s talk about cricket and, more specifically, two cricketers. The first one we’ll focus on is Steve Waugh and the second James Vince. Steve Waugh no longer plays, having retired in 2004, but is known as one of the finest cricketers of the all-time. Notable for his role in the transformation of Australian cricket, I’m more interested in Waugh’s personal transformation. We’ll revisit that later. James Vince is still playing professional cricket. Captain of Hampshire CCC (incidentally, the team I support!), Vince has played for England on a n ..read more
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Take notes – sometimes it’s OK to copy?
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
I’ve got to kick this off with a big old disclaimer. The following thoughts are based on my experiences as a classroom practitioner and therefore may not be rooted in research. I wrote a couple of posts previously on the purpose of exercise books and booklets. In both of these posts, I make an argument for bookletising the curriculum and broadly I stand by those arguments (spoiler: kids can read loads). However, prior to the half term break I had a couple of evenings marking my students exercise books (we’ve not gone full booklet yet!) and had cause to reflect on what I was seeing/marking/givi ..read more
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What’s the point of an exercise book?
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
I’ve been teaching for 9 years. In that time, I have never not used an exercise book. Every child who has passed through my class has been gifted a (usually green, don’t @ me, geography is always green) blank, lined paper book that will act as a physical manifestation of everything we cover in the classroom through that year. The last 20 months have made me increasingly introspective about education, my values and what we’re trying to do. I can’t quite shake from my mind that the way we use exercise books (secondary school geography teacher here), or the way I’ve seen them used, isn’t really h ..read more
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How I teach… the long and cross profiles of a river (AQA, GCSE)
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
We are a few weeks into the new academic year and I have spent some time reflecting on my new Y11 class. We’ve started the year with the ‘River landscapes in the UK’ element of the course. Interestingly, this topic doesn’t seem to attract the same sense of confusion that the GACM does but I think the early part of this unit can be equally tricky. The shape of river valleys changes as rivers flow downstream. The long profile and changing cross profile of a river and its valley.Fluvial processes: erosion – hydraulic action, abrasion, attrition, solution, vertical and lateral erosionTransporta ..read more
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GUEST POST – Carbon Choices by @carbonchoicesuk
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
**Geographer Neil Kitching has recently published a book on the solutions to our climate change and nature crises. It is a comprehensive guide, written in easy to read language and as such contains ideal material for teachers to share with older students studying geography. In this blog, Neil talks about the solutions to our climate and nature crises from a geographer’s perspective.** Geography is at the centre of climate and nature – the defining issues of the next few decades. Geography, the study of human impact and natural processes, provides the context and overview for pupils. Geography ..read more
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Geography in the news? Yeah, OK.
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
Sometimes, you’ve got to hold your hands up and say you were wrong. I wrote this and stood by those words for quite a while. A lot of my thinking here was informed by my emerging understanding of ideas of curriculum, powerful knowledge, cognitive psychology and I probably lost sight of the subject… If you haven’t read the post, the argument I present is primarily that we have a curriculum plan, carefully planned and sequenced, and any deviation away from that is a poor decision and disrupts the ground work we had laid previously. Looking back, I think I’ve gotten this quite badly wrong. This p ..read more
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GUEST POST – Developing schema and unearthing misconceptions: Connection Walls @Geogthorne
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
**Incredibly grateful to Suzanne Thorne for sharing her thoughts and expertise here. A really fascinating approach – certainly one I will be looking to apply to my own teaching as we adapt to our new normal! Make sure you give Suzanne a follow, here @Geogthorne** Last term during our period of remote teaching it became increasingly difficult to use verbal questioning to inform our teaching and as a class teacher our understanding of our pupil’s gaps and misconceptions was more challenging to identify. On return to the classroom, but without the same flexibility to live mark, identifying pupil ..read more
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How I teach… Using booklets
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
I tweeted earlier in the weekend that I was spending some time working on booklets and shared a little snapshot of what they look like, here. This seems to have generated some interest and so I thought I’d breakdown some of the thinking behind using booklets and what their use looks like in the classroom. When I say booklet, I mean a complete workbook – the booklet replaces the need for a separate exercise book (though I encourage A-Level students to run a notebook alongside the booklet) as it contains everything. Class notes, exam practice, homework and independent work. This means they can b ..read more
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GUEST POST – How I teach… The development gap @RobboGeog
Team Geography
by GeographyTom
2y ago
**Following some positive noises on Twitter, delighted to return to #HowITeachGeog! This post is provided by the brilliant @RobboGeog – go and find her on Twitter – who got the writing bug and shared this over. Love it!  Tackling a sensitive and interesting issue here – I think Hina does a great job in unpacking some of the issues and challenges around this topic. Let us know your thoughts #geographyteacher!** The development gap is one of my favourite topics to teach. It is a really important basis for so many other aspects of geography, including country studies. In the current climate ..read more
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