Geography is a “discipline that seeks to understand the world, its human and physical features through an understanding of place and location” (Preston, EEO410– Geography as a Curriculum Area, Deakin University, PowerPoint Slides, 2018). Geography draws on a range of skills geographical techniques, graphicacy, map interpretation, fieldwork and data processing.
Throughout the five mini lessons in week 5, Geography was explored through mapping and how mapping can be represented in different ways, different climates and industries and their impact on the environment. Gilbert and Hoepper’s (2017) 3 stage inquiry model was used when teaching these lessons through establishing what the students want to find out, the finding out stage and deciding what to do with what has been learnt. Preston (2016), states “skills and concepts are developed through an inquiry approach” (EEO410– Developing Geo-spatial skills in Geography, Deakin University, PowerPoint Slides) and not separately.
The students researched and inquired through YouTube clips, video profiles and IQ scanning devices to learn about comparing different industries in different locations, different climates and the effect it can have on flora and fauna and how mapping can be represented in different ways. Students displayed what they had found out displaying their work using flow charts to show how the climate can impact different flora and fauna, using clay to represent how the aboriginal culture represented mapping with symbols, and a map of Deakin island to locate different landmarks and industries. The learning intentions for the mini lessons were based off the Victorian Curriculum standards (2018) and included “Describe and explain the diverse characteristics of places in different locations” (VCGGC085), “Identify and describe locations and describe and explain spatial distributions and patterns” (VCGGC086), and Describe and explain interconnections within places and between places” (VCGG087).
Activities which involved locating structures on a map of Deakin island were useful activities in teaching fundamental geographical skills to students as “Maps are predominant means of communicating spatial information.. and it is through geography that students are taught to read, construct and interpret maps in a sequential order” (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2017, p.260)
Students will need to consider sustainability when learning about geography as teachers “have a long history of considering issues of sustainability, and sustainable development has featured in geography teaching for many years” (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2017, p.257)
Gilbert, R, Hoepper, B 2017, Teaching humanities and social sciences: History, geography, economics & citizenship, South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia
Preston, L , EEO410– Geography as a Curriculum Area, Deakin University, PowerPoint Slides, 2018
Preston, L , EEO410– Developing Geospatial skills in Geography, Deakin University, PowerPoint Slides, 2016
Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority, 2018, Accessed on 09/04/19, Retrieved from <http://victoriancurriculum.vcaa.vic.edu.au/the-humanities/geography/curriculum/f-10#level=5-6>
Activity 1 (Sally): Locating different industries on a map
Activity 2 (Jordan): Use video profiles to locate landmarks on a map
Activity 3 (Owen): How climate on flora and fauna impacts industries
Activity 4 (Nichol): How Indigenous Australians represent mapping