Manifesto for geography: key messages

1. Geography: A curriculum resource par excellence

  • Geography is for everyone - not an academic subject for a few
  • It helps explain, inspire and address curiosity about the earth
  • It contributes to wider and deeper educational agendas

DOWNLOAD DOREEN MASSEY - 'THE GEOGRAPHICAL MIND' (PDF, 2.2M) From The Secondary Geography Handbook

2. Thinking geographically

  • Through geography, one can apply ideas to new and changing settings
  • It sees connections between places and scales
  • It has its own 'vocabulary' - the words it uses and the contents of the world atlas
  • It has a 'grammar' based on a set of big ideas - concepts - that help organise thought

SEE PETER JACKSON - 'THINKING GEOGRAPHICALLY' (Free access for GA Members)

3. Living geography

  • Geography is concerned with 'real world' issues
  • It needs relevance to the students’ lives and work
  • It has a future perspective
  • It observes deeply and perceptively
  • It encourages critical understanding of big ideas, such as 'sustainable development'

DOWNLOAD LIVING GEOGRAPHY CHAPTER 1 (PDF, 1.3M) From Living Geography.

4. Geography and young people

  • Young people should help to shape what is taught in geography
  • It encourages communication, conversation and discussion about what is taught
  • It uses students' everyday experiences - geography can be about them
  • It offers visions beyond the students' immediate horizons
  • It has a 'futures' orientation

VISIT THE YOUNG PEOPLE'S GEOGRAPHIES WEBSITE

5. Investigating and exploring geography

  • Geography is about active participation in enquiry
  • It uses digital and other media
  • It uses imagination and creativity
  • Geography challenges prejudices and received wisdoms
  • It addresses fundamental questions about people and places and how both physical and human processes work

SEE MARGARET ROBERTS' BOOK GEOGRAPHY THROUGH ENQUIRY

6. Geography and the 'real world'

  • Fieldwork is essential for 'real world' learning
  • Learning outside the classroom is often a real motivator

VISIT THE LEARNING OUTSIDE THE CLASSROOM WEBSITE

7. Curriculum making with geography

  • Teachers of geography need to be active determinants of what is taught and how it is taught, responding constantly to change in subject matter and context
  • The curriculum must ensure that students are helped to think critically
  • Geography crosses intellectual boundaries and can help to link them.
  • The subject lends itself to using innovative teaching approaches

VISIT THE GA'S CURRICULUM MAKING SECTION


A Different View was produced and funded by the Geographical Association. The GA maintains its independence through the support of its members, whose subscriptions provide the GA's core funding and who give the GA its authority to speak for geography and its role in schools. If you are not already a member of the GA, you can join online now

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