Thursday, November 13, 2008

Geography Becomes Extinct

Can you believe how many people do not know the continents or where major countries are located? I found these two lessons: A Collaboration Project for All Ages and Writing a Story in Google Maps and thought they would be great to use with students. We have come a long way to teaching geography. I recently found out that our district has cut geography from the middle school curriculum. After I picked my jaw off the ground, I had to say that this seems totally ridiculous to me. As we become a more global society, I would think that geography would be even more important. How can we interact with people from other countries if we have no idea where they are or even how to find out where they are? There have been many news articles reflecting the horror of knowing that our children do not have geography skills. Yet, they are doing away with teaching geography in school?

As I interact with teachers from other countries, I am finding out how much we are same more than different. I see that we have a lot of common difficulties in the schools and the students. We celebrate our successes of our students with the same enthusiasm no matter where we live. We share common fears for our children and our countries but we don’t let our differences keep us from connecting and collaborating. Maybe if our governments can’t work for peace from the top down, we can do it by teaching our students and work from the bottom up.

I think doing one of these projects would be successful in the classroom. If the school district is not promoting teaching geography, I feel these lessons could be used to teach reading, writing, computer literacy, and even history. There are so many ways to adapt these lessons to the needs of your students. Since Geography is now pushed out of the classroom, I hope that teachers will incorporate it as much as possible with their lessons.I hope you give one of them a try.

Photo credit: Original image: 'globe'

1 comment:

Nic Mobbs said...

Another great mapping/narrative tool would have to be - putting together an interactive travel journal. I want to use it with my students.