Wednesday, 30 April 2014

New iBook from Paul Turner

I had a sneak preview of Paul Turner's new iBook a few days ago, and it's now out, and available on iTunes at 'my favourite price'.
This is a really nice summary of some of the best tools out there for teachers wanting to find out about technology that can help.

I particularly like p.54 :)

Well done Mr. Turner !

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

TES Geography Week

Today's additions to TES Geography Week include some podcasts from Paula Owens and John Hopkin and three guidance notes from the Royal Geographical Society on teaching the new national curriculum, the UK, and Global Learning.
More to come each day this week...

Monday, 28 April 2014

Cloud Loving Geographer

The blog written by my fab HoD - developing nicely....
Has resources for some areas already there, and others will be added over time... a work in progress and should prove to be very helpful for those wanting a further glimpse into what we get up to in our department, which holds a GA Centre of Excellence award... we've (nearly) got a certificate and everything !

Greater London National Park - Dan on BBC London

Daniel Raven Ellison followed Damon Albarn into Robert Elms' radio studio today to talk about the Greater London National Park.

Follow from 01.10'.10" to hear him explain why.

It's also in Time Out today too.


I like the connection between Damon Albarn and the fact that the article is called 'Park Life'...

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Two videos for ArcGIS Online

ArcGIS Online is one of my summer 'projects' - I need to work on getting it more embedded into my teaching.
One of the main ways that I learn of new work is through the work of schools who kindly share their work.
One of them is the Royal High School, Bath who shared this video on proportional flow lines, as well as some work on GOAD Plans.

The second is by the guru of all things ESRI, the inestimable Joseph Kerski.
It shows how to explore journeys to school using the mapping tool.



My next plan is to get into Story Maps too....

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Tofal's blog

It's always good to hear from other bloggers...
I was recently contacted by Tofol Tobal Conesa, who has a blog called 'The Freelance Geographer' which describes some of his projects and travels.

Thanks for getting in touch !

Pale Blue Dot

Planning Year 7 work for next few weeks based on this short film, the Cassini spacecraft and Earthrise images, and the Young Geographer of the Year competition (PDF download of guidelines from link)

It'll be over on GeographyTeacher2Point0


Pale Blue Dot from ORDER on Vimeo.

Friday, 25 April 2014

Uk Data Explorer

A reminder of this site, which has a range of useful data visualisations.
Most of these have been blogged about at some point when they appeared but it's good to find them all in one location.

TES Geography Week

I've been spending a bit of time this week doing some writing for next week's TES Geography Week.


I'll be checking in next Monday to see what Matt Foulds has to say about the new Geography curriculum - get your questions ready for him....

Here's the full timetable for the week...

Monday 28 April

Join us for a live chat at 6pm with an expert from the Department for Education to discuss the changes. Send us your questions here.

Paula Owens, primary curriculum development manager at the Geographical Association, will be blogging about the changes to the primary geography curriculum:
1. Key changes, essential messages and how we ought to interpret them

2. How geography can contribute to school improvement

3. How to evaluate geography provision

4. Thinking geographically: Enquiry, mapping and fieldwork

5. Global Learning: How do we teach about the wider world?

Dr John Hopkin, head of accreditation for the Geographical Association, will be blogging about the changes to the Key Stage 3 geography curriculum:

1. What’s changed, with some first thoughts on getting started

2. Some of the key challenges

3. Curriculum making, key concepts, and going beyond

4. Geographical enquiry

5. Progression: Despite the government’s decision to abolish level descriptions, many practices which support progress in the classroom will still be useful

Tuesday 29 April
The Royal Geographical Society has produced a resource pack to help you unpick the new geography curriculum. This will focus on: i) how the curriculum has changed; ii) teaching about the UK; iii) teaching about development issues. We will be launching this here on Tuesday.

We will also have podcasts from Paula Owens and Dr John Hopkin on a range of issues relating to the new curriculum.

Wednesday 30 April
Dr Rita Gardner, director of the Royal Geographical Society, who has been particularly influential in shaping the new curriculum, will be blogging about the major changes and explaining why the curriculum is as it is.

Thursday 1 May
The Department for Education will be releasing a video about the changes to the geography curriculum.
Alan Kinder, CEO of the Geographical Association, will be blogging about the changes to the curriculum for the Department for Education.

Friday 2 May
My favourite resources: Teachers will be recommending their favourite resources. Tell us about yours in the TES Geography forums or by tweeting @tesResources.

We will have a range of blogs from practising teachers bringing you the best of the Geographical Association’s 2014 conference.

Monday, 21 April 2014

John Muir Day

Celebrate his legacy today...
Earlier this year, we published a book as part of our work with the John Muir Trust
Download it as a PDF here.....


"These missions are great, you can really see the spark they've generated with teachers." 
Carol Walker, South Lanarkshire Outdoor Learning Development Officer

Sunday, 20 April 2014

GA Conference - IoW Map

A good interactive map of the Isle of Wight which has been developed by the MEDINA Field Centre on the Isle of Wight.

About a year ago, I led a session for the GA on Fieldwork in Geography, and spoke to Keith from the centre about the Interactive map of the Dorset Coast that has a range of layers.

A year on, they have now created their own version of the map.


Check out the other RESOURCES.

myVolcano app from the British Geological Survey

A new free app from the British Geological Survey.

Find out about volcanoes, but also contribute to citizen science and crowdsourcing, especially with regards to volcanic ash.
May be useful if and when one of Iceland's volcanoes decides to erupt again...



Saturday, 19 April 2014

GA Conference - Discover Geography

Launched to coincide with the GA Conference, and developed by Discover the World Education in association with the GA, a new resources site DISCOVER GEOGRAPHY.

Registration is required to access any of the content on the site.

GA Conference - the official photos

For many years now, the official photographer at the GA Conference has been Bryan Ledgard, who has also been designing the GA's books and journals for some time.
This year, the official photographer was Bryan's daughter Rose, and she's done a cracking job...
Check out a sample of the photos which have gone up onto Flickr...

Here's some young geographers admiring a rather fine book for example....



Image copyright: Rose Ledgard / Geographical Association

GA Conference - Masarang

Thanks to Alex Murchie for the details on the MASARANG project, which he talked about at the conference, along with Chris Durbin.
This is a conservation project in Indonesia.
Alongside the project website itself, there is a set of teacher resources, which promises 25 ways to bring Masarang into your lessons.
These include materials related to pictures, and also on the production of Sugar Palm.


Next week....

I'll be doing something based around Fashion Revolution Day.... will you ?
April 24th marks the first anniversary of the collapse of the garment factories at Rana Plaza in Bangladesh.


Friday, 18 April 2014

Proper Geography

From the British Pathe YouTube release...

GA Conference - blog feedback...

It wasn't just me writing about the GA conference - there's a whole range of other bloggers who have been sharing their thoughts.
Here are links to some of the blogs that I've come across via Twitter.
Feel free to tell me about yours if you have one...
V2: 20th April

David Rogers has several posts about the Conference currently at his blog.
Rachel Norman posted her favourite sessions, Margaret Roberts included, on her Geographical Enquirer blog.
Hannah Holden blogged about her time on the Future Geographers' day, and was particularly impressed with Dan's Guerrilla Geography presentation

Updates
Garry Simmons blog here

Meanwhile, Rayburn Tours put a video on YouTube..

GA Conference - New Primary blog...

While at the conference, I was introduced to a newish PRIMARY GEOGRAPHY blog, with postings from people like Anthony Barlow.
There's already a few ideas on there that I'm going to use.





GA Conference - Missions

Thanks to all the delegates who came along to the conference, but also took the time to complete some of our special missions.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

British Pathe archive released to YouTube

Tweet earlier today from British Pathe

There are, therefore, thousands of historic videos now available to Geographers.
I don't sadly have time at the moment to do this justice.
Here's a small selection of architecture films that one blogger has identified for those exploring urban themes.
So much scope here... 
Please add any really good Geography films that you find as comments below...
Or add them to the GOOGLE SHEET here.

Here's some maps being made in 1961 for example...

GA Conference - David Rogers' Lecture


#gaconf14 New curriculum lecture from David Rogers

I was unable to get to this lecture as it clashed with something else I had to be at, but it had great feedback...
Here's the slides that David used, although as with all these online resources, you really need to hear the speaker to bring them to life completely...

Now listening...


GA Conference - Centre of Excellence Award for King's Ely

After the Association at Work day and AGM, the GA Conference opens to the main group of delegates with the Public Lecture.

This time it was given by Professor Iain Stewart, who talked about the artificial division between Human and Physical Geography, and also the importance of energy sources, such as fracking.

I was also there Claire and Jane from my department to pick up the Centre of Excellence award, that we had received from the GA this year, associated with the Global Learning Programme. The 'official photo' will be added here when available, but here's an iPhone snap for starters...

Congratulations to all the award winners, particularly Sharon Witt and Andrea Tapsfield.

Update
The official pic by Rose Ledgard


Image copyright: Rose Ledgard / Geographical Association

Google celebrates 63 years of the Peak District...


Wednesday, 16 April 2014

London Curriculum

Have you heard of the London Curriculum ?
I hadn't until a few hours ago...

A conversation with a colleague at the GA Conference today led me to the project, which is designed to support the National Curriculum.
Check out the LONDON CURRICULUM WEBSITE here.

We are using London itself to inspire new key stage three resources and activities in the capital’s schools. The Mayor of London’s Education Inquiry recognised the huge opportunity to enrich and strengthen education in London, by drawing on the city’s rich heritage. We are now entering the pilot phase of the London Curriculum, scroll down to find out how you can take part!
You can find the London Curriculum guide and subject summaries for English, art and design, music, history and geography at the bottom of this page.
The London Curriculum will support the new National Curriculum, while helping young Londoners to better understand and engage with their city. The London Curriculum aims to improve:
  • Subject knowledge and skills – helping teachers bring subjects to life by making illustrative and inspiring connections to the city, its people, places and heritage.
  • City knowledge and skills – helping London students to become experts in the places, people and events that shape their city.
  • Connection and contribution – helping students connect with London and other Londoners, to make more of the opportunities and help shape their city for the better.
The teaching resources are being developed by a partnership of subject specialists, cultural and heritage organisations and London schools, to support learning in and out of the classroom.

How will the pilot work?

We are currently developing the London Curriculum resources with around 30 pilot schools in London, before they launch for all schools in June 2014, ready for the new school year. At present the materials are aimed at Key Stage 3 and cover English, history, geography, music and art. You can find more detail in the guides at the bottom of the page.
London Curriculum pilot schools all over the city are enjoying inspiring educational opportunities inside and outside the classroom based on the resources we are developing. Their pupils are discovering the rich architecture of the city, exploring London's global heritage from the Roman times to the present day and learning about musicians inspired by the capital, from Handel, to the Kinks and Dizzee Rascal. 
Head to the WEBSITE page, scroll down to see the link to the GEOGRAPHY DOCUMENT (PDF)

The project will be launched in June / July ready for use in the September 2014

I wonder whether schools in cities other than London might want to develop something similar for their own locations too, based on the structure used here...

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

GA Conference - Writing's on the Wall

Presentation used in workshop 'Writing on the Wall'.

See my teaching blog: GeographyTeacher 2.0 for more on the work that I did on Touching the Void.
Download the resources from Scribd and Slideshare here...

Sheet created by my HoD Claire

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Earthquake comparisons...

Thanks to Ben King for the tipoff to this really useful resource...

History will teach us... er... something

I try to keep aware of what is happening in subject communities beyond Geography... mainly so that I can subvert their ideas for Geography though.
I became aware of Michael Fordham's History blog recently, and he has been adding some interesting posts on what the changes to the GCSE might mean for planning, and talks about it needing a 'five year plan' to integrate KS3 with the new GCSE - some good ideas here, and a well designed blog.

Stats and I-USE - preparing for GA conference session

One of the workshops that I am taking part in at the GA Conference is related to to the I-USE project, which is one of the EU projects I'm currently taking part in. This is aimed at developing teachers' ability in statistical literacy.

Statistics were also in many people's minds earlier this week when the new GCSE Subject Content guidance for Geography was released.

Appendix: Use of mathematics and statistics in geography 

The list below outlines the range and extent of mathematical and statistical techniques considered appropriate to geography GCSE. The following should all be covered in any specification. Examples in bold are to aid understanding and suggest range, and these are not compulsory. 
Cartographic skills 
 use and understand gradient, contour and spot height on OS maps and other isoline maps (e.g. weather charts, ocean bathymetric charts) 
 interpret cross sections and transects
 use and understand coordinates, scale and distance
 describe and interpret geo-spatial data presented in a GIS framework (e.g. analysis of flood hazard using the interactive maps on the Environment Agency website)

Graphical skills 
 select and construct appropriate graphs and charts to present data, using appropriate scales and including bar charts, pie charts, pictograms, line charts, histograms with equal class intervals
 interpret and extract information from different types of graphs and charts including any of the above and others relevant to the topic (e.g. triangular graphs, radial graphs, wind rose diagrams, proportional symbols) 
 interpret population pyramids, choropleth maps and flow-line maps

Numerical skills 
 demonstrate an understanding of number, area and scale and the quantitative relationships between units
 design fieldwork data collection sheets and collect data with an understanding of accuracy, sample size and procedures, control groups and reliability
 understand and correctly use proportion and ratio, magnitude and frequency (e.g. 1:200 flood; and logarithmic scales such as the Richter scale, in orders of magnitude) 
 draw informed conclusions from numerical data

Statistical skills 
 use appropriate measures of central tendency, spread and cumulative frequency (median, mean, range, quartiles and inter-quartile range, mode and modal class)
 calculate percentage increase or decrease and understand the use of percentiles
 describe relationships in bivariate data: sketch trend lines through scatter plots; draw estimated lines of best fit; make predictions; interpolate and extrapolate trends
 be able to identify weaknesses in selective statistical presentation of data

We'll explore these at the meeting and make sure that we cover them.
Finally, here is David Rogers' view on the changes, which makes interesting reading as does the GA's thoughts on the document.

UPDATE
Also some really interesting thoughts from Carl Phillips here.


Come along to the I-USE workshop at the GA Conference 2014, on Wednesday next week at 9am - we'll be talking about support for statistics.

Follow us on Twitter @StatsinEdu for more details

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Top 100 UK Education Blogs

See the list in the latest UK EdChat Magazine @ukedchat #ukedchat



New day and time for my GA Conference workshop

We've had a change to the timing of our GA CONFERENCE workshop.

WRITING ON THE WALL will not now take place on the Wednesday morning.

It will now take place on Tuesday the 15th of April between 1.50 and 2.40 pm

Come and see 
One slight advantage of the changed timings is that we are no longer up against Margaret Roberts, which means that we may have more people coming along.... although it does mean we're now up at the same time slot as Andy Knill and Angus Willson.
Come and see Gary Dawson, Kathryn Stephenson and myself.

It also means I will be able to take part in the I-USE workshop on the Wednesday morning.

Also keep an eye on the GLP STRAND - don't forget my GLP CPD course



Friday, 11 April 2014

National Trust Shifting Shores report


A useful report for those teaching about COASTAL Management.
Published by the National Trust, and takes a look at the next 100 years of coastal change.
Click to download as a PDF - update of 2005 report pictured below

Thursday, 10 April 2014

GA Conference Missions

A first look at the special Mission:Explore missions that we have prepared for delegates at the GA Conference.
See you there...

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

ISSIG CPD at Charterhouse

A useful CPD update day for colleagues teaching iGCSE / 'A' level

GCSE and Post-16 Geography Cluster group

Charterhouse, Godalming. Surrey

Wednesday 25th June 2014 9.30am –3.45pm


Presenters: Peter Price (host), Dr Gareth Hughes, Kieron Young, Ewan Laurie, Dr Garrett Nagle, Iain Palot, Steve Brace, Paul Baker

Morning: GCSE Cluster - updates and planning for all exams

09.30 Arrive for coffee, tea and pastries

10.00 Opening Lecture: Dr Gareth Hughes: ‘Is natural gas all it is fracked up to be’

11.00 Coffee

11.15 Kieron Young: ‘ GPS and Geocaching for GCSE‘

12.15 Two Workshops – make your choice

1. Peter Price and Gareth Hughes: ‘Where are we with IGCSE’

2. Paul Baker and Steve Brace ‘GCSE – the new GCSE syllabi and how to resource it.

13.15 Lunch

Afternoon: Post 16 Cluster - updates and Planning for all Post-16 exams

14.00 Future Post 16 exam updates Ian Palot ( Chair of GA Post 16 Committee) and Steve Brace (RGS)

14.45 Workshops looking at relevant resources, past examinations and exploring strategies to manage courses effectively:

Workshop 1 - IB (Ewan Laurie and Garrett Nagle)

Workshop 2 - A Level (Iain Palot and Dr Gareth Hughes)

Workshop 3 - Pre-U (Peter Price)

16.00 Close and depart

Cost £60 for the day

Reserve your place now by emailing Paul Baker bakerpabs@gmail.com and asking for a booking form or more information.

I spoke at this event last year, and it's a really useful day to update your practice and knowledge.

New GCSE Geography Subject Content

Published today by the DfE - new guidance on Subject Content for GCSE Geography.
Click here for PDF download.

Some interesting clarification on content, use of GIS, nature of FIELDWORK etc.

This includes the loss of Controlled Assessment as fieldwork is assessed 'through examination only'

There is mention of GIS to be used for certain tasks, and also guidance on the use of statistical techniques.
Some interesting physical and human geography also emerging.
I quite like the focus on urban challenges, something I've written about before...

Download the document and have a look yourself...

It's what you'll be teaching in a few years' time...

From statement by Michael Gove:

In geography, the balance between physical and human geography has been improved - developing students’ locational and contextual knowledge of the world’s continents, countries and regions and their physical, environmental and human features - alongside a requirement that all students study the geography of the UK in depth. Students will also need to use a wide range of investigative skills and approaches, including mathematics and statistics, and we have introduced a requirement for at least 2 examples of fieldwork outside school.

And this is important as it's the guidance to those who will be writing the new GCSE specifications:

When designing specifications, awarding organisations should note the following ways in which curriculum emphases should progress from KS3 and ensure that specifications facilitate this: 
 broadening and deepening understanding of locational contexts, including greater awareness of the importance of scale and the concept of global 
 a greater emphasis given to process studies that lead to an understanding of change 
 a greater stress on the multivariate nature of 'human-physical' relationships and interactions 
 a stronger focus on forming generalisations and/or abstractions, including some awareness of theoretical perspectives and of the subject’s conceptual frameworks 
 an increased involvement of students in planning and undertaking independent enquiry in which skills and knowledge are applied to investigate geographical questions 
 enhancing competence in a range of intellectual and communication skills, including the formulation of arguments, that include elements of synthesis and evaluation of material

Thought for the Day

A lot of our geography is in the mind
Doreen Massey

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Preparing for GA Conference - next week !

Spent part of today finalising one of my many and varied contributions to the GA Conference 2014.

I'll be talking about literacy with respect to the work we did in my department around the Scholastic edition of the book 'Touching the Void'.

Here's the description of the workshop which it forms part of, which is being led by Gary Dawson, a fine teacher and colleague on the GA's Secondary committee.


Thanks to Tony Cassidy for some contributions that he's made, and various other folks on Twitter who I'll thank in full when I write-up the outcomes from the workshop at the end of next week. I shall be sharing all the resources, including the presentation once it has been presented.

Also don't forget to pick up a copy of our special MISSION:EXPLORE missions for the conference if you are coming along.

See you at the Conference - come and say hi if you see me around...
And don't forger the BEERMEET on the Tuesday evening

Ten Pound Poms

Updating an old resource for a project that I'll be sharing with you next week...
A nice archive ad attracting people from the UK to live in Australia...

Yorkshire Film and TV Map

Locations in Yorkshire for Film and TV
Related to a 'Game of Thrones' resource that I'm working on...



Idea Zone at GA Conference

Come to the Idea Zone at the GA Conference next week to see Follow the Things' own Lego Maker challenge, and also Top Trumps games.

A chance to recreate one of the scenes from the FOLLOW THE THINGS website, for which I've created some teaching materials.

Also a chance to take part in some special MISSION:EXPLORE challenges for conference time.
Keep an eye out for a new look to our website coming soon as well...

As a starter, we've recreated a scene from one of Professor Iain Stewart's TV shows... Come and see him at the Public Lecture on the Monday evening...

Monday, 7 April 2014

Books in Geography lessons...

Just preparing for one of my contributions at the GA Conference, which is next week.
If you have used a book in a Geography lesson recently, let me know which book, which year group and how you used it...
What I mean by this is not a textbook, but a fiction or fact book used as a resource, or for reading by the students.
I'll be talking about my work with TOUCHING THE VOID along with colleagues from the GA Secondary Phase Committee.

Will be sharing all the responses after the conference...
Thanks in advance for all contributions

 

21st Century Challenges - resources

New resource to go along with the RGS-IBG's 21st Century Challenges website.
This has a range of posters that you can print off for classroom display purposes, and then links to a set of resources around some of the themes that the project has considered.
Well worth exploring, particular for those teaching GCSE and 'A' level.


Rockefeller Foundation 100 Resilient Cities

A useful resource, which I came across today.
Ideas for improving the resilience of cities, and a useful blog which has case studies of particular cities.
Good for units exploring futures of cities, and also changes in existing ones. Interesting idea to ask residents to suggest why their city needs to improve its resilience, and how to go about doing it.

Dan Ellison steps up to his next challenge...

Back in the original Mission:Explore book we had this mission...


This summer, Dan Ellison is going to do this for real, and he needs your help to reach the height of Mount Everest.

Check out Dan's blog for the details and a form that you can fill in, or direct people to that you know who have a building in the centre of London that Dan can use for his challenge.

Ruin Lust

Quite interested to go to see this exhibition at Tate Britain

Friday, 4 April 2014

Greater London National Park Student Challenge

Earlier this week, the Greater London National Park website was launched, with the idea that London should be the first urban National Park. There's been a lot of support for the idea, and interesting debate.

If you're a student you can take part in the Student Challenge

What if London was a National Park?
Our Student Challenge is to respond to this question in a creative way. We will be posting the best responses in a public gallery on this website.
To take part simply follow these three steps.
1. Think
Think deeply about the reasons for and against London becoming a National Park. Do some research and explore this website, especially ourvision page.
  • Do you think an entire city can be a National Park?
  • How would London change if it became a National Park?
  • What would be the benefits for people who live outside of London?
  • Who, what and where would be affected by these changes?
  • What could London be like 5, 10 or 50 years from now?
You can think about these questions from different points of view and scales. The opinion of a city banker who lives in a penthouse apartment will probably be different from a suburban garden hedgehog.
2. Create
Make something visual to respond to the question. It could focus on a particular animal, plant, place or issue. You could:
  • draw a picture,
  • create a map,
  • write a poem,
  • make a short film,
  • build a model,
  • annotate set of photographs,
  • or something else entirely.
3. Share
Once you are done take a good quality photograph or scan what you have done. Email it to us at imagine@greaterlondonnationalpark.org.uk. We will look at all of the submissions and publish the best ones to a public gallery on this website. We will treat all submissions as Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives unless you tell us otherwise

Got a Kindle ? Get this...

On Sunday only for £1...

Latest offer from Crown House Publishing
In the previous three months I've got Independent Thinking by Ian Gilbert, Trivium 21C and Vic Goddard's 'Best Job in the World' all for just £1 each too...

NB: I don't have a Kindle, but have the app on iPad and my Nexus so that works fine too...

Athens 3 - Mission:Explore....

After I'd done my 90 minute session at the conference (see earlier post), I asked for directions from a delegate who lived locally, and headed off through the suburbs of Athens to the nearest Metro station to make my way into the centre of the city.

Here's a Slideshare of the report on Cloud education that was shared at the event.



I took the chance to explore the city of Athens while I was there, as I may not return any time soon.
I had a wander through the suburbs, and travelled on the Metro, which I later remembered was built for the Olympics, which explains why it is spacious and well built, and serves a large part of the city. Having dropped off my conference documentation and laptop and changed into suitable more suitable for the 70 degree temperatures, it was into the centre to the Acropolis.


That evening, I met up with other conference delegates for a chat and some beers.

RGS Earthwatch Event


Thanks to Paul Baker for sending through details of this event...

How can we conserve rainforests as suppliers seek to meet increasing demand for palm oil?

When: Thursday 15th May, 2014 @ 7pm (bar opens 6pm) 

Where:  Royal Geographical Society London SW7 2AR 

How much: Free, but a donation to Earthwatch is encouraged! 

Oil palm is the world’s most widely used vegetable oil, but environmental and social concerns
surrounding its production, make it one of the most controversial crops. Our speakers will examine the challenges we face in conserving biodiversity in rapidly changing landscapes, and the role that science, citizens and certification can play towards a sustainable future.
More than 45 million tonnes of palm oil are produced annually, of which about 87 per cent is grown in Malaysia and Indonesia. Palm oil is used in about 50 per cent of packaged food products on supermarket shelves and has also been developed to produce biodiesel.
The cultivation of palm oil has been criticised for multiple negative impacts on the natural
environment including deforestation and the loss of natural habitats, which has threatened critically endangered species such as the Sumatran orang-utan and Sumatran tiger.
Since 2008, Earthwatch has supported research to maintain the health and strength of the rainforest in Borneo in the face of changes in climate and land use.
Earthwatch is putting together a diverse panel of speakers with vast personal and professional
experience from academia, corporate and industry backgrounds.
Keynote speaker will be Dr Glen Reynolds, Director of the South East Asia Rainforest Research Programme (SEARRP) and leading Earthwatch scientist for the research project ‘Climate and Landscape Change in Borneo’s Rainforest’. 

For more information and to book tickets log on to http://eu.earthwatch.org/events/ 

Do it for Denmark

An interesting campaign to tackle low birth rates in Denmark, which could well have been an April Fool's joke given the date...
Called Do it for Denmark, it is being organised by a travel company in Denmark, and those who participate in the scheme have a chance to earn prizes if they can prove that they conceived a baby while on holiday with the firm.


An interesting one for pro-natal population policies.

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Newcastle on Tyne

Up to Newcastle on Tyne yesterday to speak to students at Northumbria University on the Geography in Education course, and also do a session for the GA's Tyne and Wear branch.
It was the hottest day of the year, with 21 degrees being recorded in Kent, but in Newcastle under a fret it was around 7 degrees...

I spoke about technology to support teaching (for the teachers) and learning (for the learners) of geography. Thanks to those who came along to hear me.

Image: Alan Parkinson
Slide illustration by Tom Morgan Jones

Now listening



43 years old and still better than most anything you'll hear today...

Migration Visualisation

This kind of migration diagram has been around in various incarnations, but this circular version is compelling in its depiction of the global flow of people over the years.
It explores the Global Flow of People, and animates when you click around the edges to see a particular part of the world.

Click here to find out more.

GA Conference - some things I'm hoping to see....

The GA Conference is happening during the Easter holiday, which means that it's getting closer by the day as the holiday draws nearer.

I've had a good look at the conference programme, which is available on the GA website (and was also sent out in recent journals for those who subscribe) and there's plenty of sessions that I am going to be involved in, and am also hoping to get to see.
I serve on the GA's Secondary Committee.
We've created a list of suggestions for first time visitors to the conference , which is on the GA website.
I'm going to be quite busy for a lot of the time in a meeting of the I-USE project.
CHECK OUT THE PROJECT WEBSITE TO SEE WHAT WE'RE UP TO....

Monday night
Driving over to Guildford and checking in to my hotel and meeting colleagues on the I-USE project. I'll be arriving during the day sometime.
Public Lecture by Professor Iain Stewart - last time I saw him was the SAGT conference.
Awards Presentation - my colleagues will be collecting their Centre of Excellence certificate.
Wine Reception
A few beers and conversation...

Tuesday 15th April

I-Use Meeting takes place during the day. This involves an exploration of the next stage of the project: a teacher training course. We'll be spending a lot of time working on various dissemination tasks too.

Back at the conference venue at the University, there is also the new Idea Zone, which is offering a range of activities, including the chance to take part in some special Mission:Explore missions and say hi to Dan Raven Ellison, and also the Follow the Things Lego recreations department and Top Trumps challenge.

This means I'll miss quite a few sessions I would otherwise have gone to, such as Paula Owens and John Lyon talking about Global Learning programme, Richard Treves on Google Earth Tours and Prezi, or David Rogers on the new curriculum, Andy Knill on apps and Jason Sawle on GIS, Andrew Lee on 'thinking like a geographer'.

There are also other sessions offered by SPC colleagues, such as Victoria Ellis and Rebecca Kitchen's session 'Moving on Up' and Rachel Kay's 'Mark my Words' session.

BeerMeet in the evening will provide a chance to 'network' with lots of other geographers, and also

See the poster below - feel free to use to let others know of this opportunity to think global at someone's local...


Wednesday 16th April

The first session of the day involves the GA Secondary Phase Committee - this unfortunately clashes with the I-USE session that I am also potentially involved with, but if there's no space in the SPC meeting you may want to head over there.
Come along and see us in Workshop 33

Margaret Roberts' session on Enquiry will no doubt draw lots of people first thing on Monday, in fact I'd be in it under any other circumstances.
Sadly, it clashes with our sessions and also the I-USE one, along with David Lambert's session on GeoCapabilities. 

I shall be catching up with a few people while over at the Conference venue, including former GA colleagues.

At the end of the day, I shall then be driving back home from Guildford

There is still a chance to attend if you ring or e-mail Lucy Oxley at the GA in the next few days.

If you see me, say hello !