GA Conference 2008 Presidential Address Sustaining Geography John Westaway, GA President
Sustaining geography <ul><li>Geography – past, present and future </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Who are geographers and where ...
Who are geographers and where do they come from? Geography – past, present and future
The invisibility of geographers <ul><li>Who and where are all the geographers? </li></ul><ul><li>GA as Geographers Anonymo...
Guess the subject! <ul><li>It was his love of maps, of globes and atlases,  which had years ago led him, in a roundabout w...
Where do geographers come from? <ul><li>Some are born geographers </li></ul><ul><li>Some achieve geography </li></ul><ul><...
Some are born geographers Daydreams in the classroom <ul><ul><li>Football (Bristol City)   </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cric...
Some have geography thrust upon them
Some achieve geography <ul><li>What attracts young people to geography? </li></ul><ul><li>Attractions of the subject? </li...
Attractions of geography? <ul><li>Exotic places? </li></ul><ul><li>Issues? </li></ul><ul><li>Physical   environment? </li>...
Charismatic teachers or good teaching?
Good at geography?
Bristol – a GA President hotspot <ul><li>Pat Cleverley (1984-85); Vic Dennison (1980-81); Sheila Jones (1975-76)  </li></ul>
Bristol – a GA President hotspot Jeremy Krause 2001-02 Chris Kington 2002-03 Margaret Roberts 2008-09 John Hopkin 2010-11
The quantitative approach <ul><li>GAP i  /GAP </li></ul><ul><li>__________ </li></ul><ul><li>Pop i /Pop </li></ul>Where: G...
And the results are … 1975-2011 Location quotient – 20.2
How to make more young people achieve geography <ul><li>Ensure young people continue to    experience geography </li></ul>...
Geography – past, present and future <ul><li>Where is geography now and how did it get there? </li></ul>
Where is geography now?  <ul><li>Marginalisation of geography in primary (and secondary?) schools </li></ul><ul><li>Declin...
…  and how did it get there? <ul><li>The Halcyon Days of Geography(?): the whole of geography until 1991 </li></ul><ul><li...
The Halcyon Days? <ul><li>1960s </li></ul>
The Halcyon Days? <ul><li>GYSL </li></ul><ul><li>Bristol Project </li></ul><ul><li>Geography 16-19 </li></ul>But ….. ‘… (t...
The Dark Ages? <ul><li>1991-95: the 1991 National Curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>1995-2000: the 1995 National Curriculum </l...
The 1991 National Curriculum
1991-1995 <ul><li>Compulsory geography 5-16 </li></ul><ul><li>Overloaded & overprescriptive curriculum </li></ul><ul><ul><...
Geography SATs
The 1995 National Curriculum
1995-2000 <ul><li>Geography optional in key stage 4 </li></ul><ul><li>No statutory testing of geography in key stages 1-3 ...
The 2000 National Curriculum
2000-08 <ul><li>Revised   NC for geography </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Further content reduction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Incr...
So why is geography faring so badly? <ul><li>Are things that much worse than in 1990? </li></ul><ul><li>Tests, league tabl...
Geography – past, present and future <ul><li>What next for geography? </li></ul>
At the crossroads: 2008 <ul><li>Primary review </li></ul><ul><li>New secondary (ie key stage 3)   curriculum  </li></ul><u...
Opportunities & Challenges: Primary Review <ul><li>New improved geography curriculum? </li></ul><ul><li>But: </li></ul><ul...
Opportunities & Challenges: Key stage 3 <ul><li>New, improved programme of study – key concepts; flexibility </li></ul><ul...
 
Opportunities & Challenges: 14-19 <ul><li>New GCSE & AS/A level specifications – scope for improving quality of geography ...
<ul><li>Opportunities   provided by the new geography curriculum frameworks </li></ul>Opportunities & Challenges <ul><li>C...
A case for geography <ul><li>A case for geography 1987 </li></ul><ul><li>A case for geography 2008 </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><...
A case for geography <ul><li>Stick to our knitting? And become an intrinsic, pure, minority pursuit </li></ul><ul><li>Go f...
Geography for sustainable    development and the sustainable development of geography
A focus on sustainable development? <ul><li>Geography has a real opportunity to   establish itself more securely in the sc...
The case for a sustainable development focus <ul><li>Sustainable development could be    to geography what literacy and   ...
Sustainable development and geography <ul><li>The central place of English in the school curriculum owes much to the fact ...
The case for a sustainable development focus <ul><li>We’re already doing it – and have been for many years </li></ul><ul><...
GYSL People Place & Work 1975
Geography National Curriculum 1991
Geography National Curriculum 1995
Geography National Curriculum 2000
Geography National Curriculum 2008 <ul><li>Environmental interaction & sustainable development   is one of the seven key c...
The case for a sustainable development focus <ul><li>We’re already doing it – and have been for many years </li></ul><ul><...
So what is ESD? <ul><li>‘ ESD enables pupils to develop the knowledge, skills, understanding and values to participate in ...
Geography & sustainable development: the overlap Key processes/key elements Geography  ESD fieldwork … an essential elemen...
Geography & sustainable development: the overlap Concepts Geography NC  GCSE Geog pilot  ESD Place Space Scale Interdepend...
Geography & sustainable development: the overlap Content Geography Flexible choice of content ESD The Sustainable Schools ...
Sustainable Schools
Sustainable schools – travel and traffic
Sustainable schools – global dimension
The challenge for geography <ul><li>New curriculum frameworks </li></ul><ul><li>Three more years of the    Action Plan for...
Sustainable schools and geography <ul><li>So what do we need to do? </li></ul>
What can the GA do? <ul><li>APG sustainable development strand – curriculum development examples and online CPD on GTT web...
What can teachers do? <ul><li>Make sustainable development more prominent and/or explicit in your new teaching schemes </l...
Geography for sustainable development … …  and sustainable development of geography!
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  1. 1. GA Conference 2008 Presidential Address Sustaining Geography John Westaway, GA President
  2. 2. Sustaining geography <ul><li>Geography – past, present and future </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Who are geographers and where do they come from? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Where is geography now and how did it get there? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What next for geography? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Geography for sustainable development and the sustainable development of geography </li></ul>
  3. 3. Who are geographers and where do they come from? Geography – past, present and future
  4. 4. The invisibility of geographers <ul><li>Who and where are all the geographers? </li></ul><ul><li>GA as Geographers Anonymous? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Guess the subject! <ul><li>It was his love of maps, of globes and atlases, which had years ago led him, in a roundabout way, into the world of _______. So many maps had he pored over in his time that he dressed, without fully realizing, in the pastels of cartography: yellow corduroy trousers (6000-9000 feet above sea level), the jacket of darkly woven maroon (Antarctic Tundra), shirt of Viyella peach (less than 1 inch of rainfall per annum), and the red fleck on his woollen tie looked like International Boundaries or population over 500 persons per square mile.’ </li></ul><ul><li>From: Homesickness by Murray Ball </li></ul>zoology and the missing word is ….
  6. 6. Where do geographers come from? <ul><li>Some are born geographers </li></ul><ul><li>Some achieve geography </li></ul><ul><li>Some have geography thrust upon them </li></ul>
  7. 7. Some are born geographers Daydreams in the classroom <ul><ul><li>Football (Bristol City) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cricket (Gloucestershire) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pop music (Rolling Stones et al) </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Some have geography thrust upon them
  9. 9. Some achieve geography <ul><li>What attracts young people to geography? </li></ul><ul><li>Attractions of the subject? </li></ul><ul><li>Charismatic teachers and/or good teaching? </li></ul><ul><li>Being good at it? </li></ul><ul><li>Leads to a particular career? </li></ul>
  10. 10. Attractions of geography? <ul><li>Exotic places? </li></ul><ul><li>Issues? </li></ul><ul><li>Physical environment? </li></ul><ul><li>Fieldwork? </li></ul>
  11. 11. Charismatic teachers or good teaching?
  12. 12. Good at geography?
  13. 13. Bristol – a GA President hotspot <ul><li>Pat Cleverley (1984-85); Vic Dennison (1980-81); Sheila Jones (1975-76) </li></ul>
  14. 14. Bristol – a GA President hotspot Jeremy Krause 2001-02 Chris Kington 2002-03 Margaret Roberts 2008-09 John Hopkin 2010-11
  15. 15. The quantitative approach <ul><li>GAP i /GAP </li></ul><ul><li>__________ </li></ul><ul><li>Pop i /Pop </li></ul>Where: GAP i is the number of GA presidents who were born, live or lived, teach or taught in city i GAP is the number of GA presidents in the nation Pop i is the population of city i Pop is the population of the nation Source: Walter Isard. Methods of Regional Analysis. MIT Press, 1960
  16. 16. And the results are … 1975-2011 Location quotient – 20.2
  17. 17. How to make more young people achieve geography <ul><li>Ensure young people continue to experience geography </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that what they experience is high quality geography </li></ul>
  18. 18. Geography – past, present and future <ul><li>Where is geography now and how did it get there? </li></ul>
  19. 19. Where is geography now? <ul><li>Marginalisation of geography in primary (and secondary?) schools </li></ul><ul><li>Declining numbers at GCSE & A level </li></ul><ul><li>Lots of satisfactory or worse geography teaching (Ofsted) </li></ul><ul><li>Poor public image – pub quizzes; boring </li></ul><ul><li>Invisibility of geographers </li></ul>
  20. 20. … and how did it get there? <ul><li>The Halcyon Days of Geography(?): the whole of geography until 1991 </li></ul><ul><li>Post-National Curriculum – the Dark Ages(?): 1991-2008 </li></ul>A brief history of geography
  21. 21. The Halcyon Days? <ul><li>1960s </li></ul>
  22. 22. The Halcyon Days? <ul><li>GYSL </li></ul><ul><li>Bristol Project </li></ul><ul><li>Geography 16-19 </li></ul>But ….. ‘… (there is) the need for a close and critical look at all tasks requiring straight copying , an exercise with more custodial than educational usefulness. Copying is not as rife at Hampstead as elsewhere … ’ ‘… too much time is spent in transferring quite complex maps and diagrams from printed page or blackboard …’ Notes based on an Inspectorate Study visit, 1981 1970s & 1980s
  23. 23. The Dark Ages? <ul><li>1991-95: the 1991 National Curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>1995-2000: the 1995 National Curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>2000-08: the 2000 National Curriculum </li></ul>
  24. 24. The 1991 National Curriculum
  25. 25. 1991-1995 <ul><li>Compulsory geography 5-16 </li></ul><ul><li>Overloaded & overprescriptive curriculum </li></ul><ul><ul><li>5 Attainment targets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>183 Statements of Attainment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>10 levels of attainment </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Standard Attainment Tasks (SATs) developed for key stage 1-3 geography </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Double page spread’ textbooks making sense of the NC </li></ul><ul><li>Testing & school performance tables </li></ul>
  26. 26. Geography SATs
  27. 27. The 1995 National Curriculum
  28. 28. 1995-2000 <ul><li>Geography optional in key stage 4 </li></ul><ul><li>No statutory testing of geography in key stages 1-3 – Teacher Assessment instead </li></ul><ul><li>Dearing Review – revised NC for Geography </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reduced content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Single attainment target </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>8 levels of attainment plus EP; level descriptions </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Optional Tests and Tasks for Key Stage 3 </li></ul><ul><li>Schemes of Work for key stages 1 and 2 </li></ul><ul><li>Relaxation of PoS in key stages 1 & 2 </li></ul>
  29. 29. The 2000 National Curriculum
  30. 30. 2000-08 <ul><li>Revised NC for geography </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Further content reduction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased flexibility through reorganisation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Return to full National Curriculum in primary schools </li></ul><ul><li>Scheme of Work for key stage 3 </li></ul>
  31. 31. So why is geography faring so badly? <ul><li>Are things that much worse than in 1990? </li></ul><ul><li>Tests, league tables and subject priorities? </li></ul><ul><li>Quality of teaching? </li></ul><ul><li>More competition? </li></ul><ul><li>Curriculum non-development? </li></ul><ul><li>Non-specialist teachers/less subject support? </li></ul>
  32. 32. Geography – past, present and future <ul><li>What next for geography? </li></ul>
  33. 33. At the crossroads: 2008 <ul><li>Primary review </li></ul><ul><li>New secondary (ie key stage 3) curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>14-19 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New GCSEs (2009) and A levels </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Diplomas, including one for Humanities </li></ul></ul>‘ Geography is at a crucial period in its development. More needs to be done to make the subject relevant and more engaging for pupils, particularly at Key Stage 3’. Christine Gilbert, HMCI
  34. 34. Opportunities & Challenges: Primary Review <ul><li>New improved geography curriculum? </li></ul><ul><li>But: </li></ul><ul><li>Aims of primary review – more time for literacy & numeracy; arts & music? PE & sport? compulsory MFL? </li></ul>
  35. 35. Opportunities & Challenges: Key stage 3 <ul><li>New, improved programme of study – key concepts; flexibility </li></ul><ul><li>But: </li></ul><ul><li>Place of geography (& subjects generally) in whole curriculum – two year key stage 3? Move to more integrated curriculum? </li></ul>
  36. 37. Opportunities & Challenges: 14-19 <ul><li>New GCSE & AS/A level specifications – scope for improving quality of geography teaching & learning </li></ul><ul><li>But: </li></ul><ul><li>Diplomas – new humanities diploma - squeeze on geography GCSE & A level? </li></ul>
  37. 38. <ul><li>Opportunities provided by the new geography curriculum frameworks </li></ul>Opportunities & Challenges <ul><li>Challenges come from the wider curriculum framework in all key stages & phases. Why should curriculum managers give geography any sort of priority? </li></ul><ul><li>We need to argue the case for geography (again) </li></ul>
  38. 39. A case for geography <ul><li>A case for geography 1987 </li></ul><ul><li>A case for geography 2008 </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Different curriculum context - geography still a statutory subject 5-14, but subjects no longer king </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Audience for the case for geography not primarily the government, but more curriculum managers in schools </li></ul>
  39. 40. A case for geography <ul><li>Stick to our knitting? And become an intrinsic, pure, minority pursuit </li></ul><ul><li>Go for legislation? Because ‘geography is essential’ </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasise vocational utility – maps, GIS? </li></ul><ul><li>Argue for extrinsic educational purpose and the contribution geography can make to the educated person? </li></ul>David Lambert. Paper to GA Governing Body 8 Mar 2008 Choices
  40. 41. Geography for sustainable development and the sustainable development of geography
  41. 42. A focus on sustainable development? <ul><li>Geography has a real opportunity to establish itself more securely in the school curriculum through a more explicit focus on sustainable development </li></ul><ul><li>Sustainable development is near the top of society’s agenda. Government launched Sustainable Schools strategy two years ago - schools will be expected to become more sustainable </li></ul>
  42. 43. The case for a sustainable development focus <ul><li>Sustainable development could be to geography what literacy and numeracy are to English and mathematics </li></ul>
  43. 44. Sustainable development and geography <ul><li>The central place of English in the school curriculum owes much to the fact that it includes literacy </li></ul><ul><li>Why can’t geography occupy a more central place in the school curriculum because it includes sustainable development? </li></ul><ul><li>The central place of mathematics in the school curriculum owes much to the fact that it includes numeracy </li></ul>
  44. 45. The case for a sustainable development focus <ul><li>We’re already doing it – and have been for many years </li></ul><ul><li>Sustainable development could be to geography what literacy and numeracy are to English and mathematics </li></ul>
  45. 46. GYSL People Place & Work 1975
  46. 47. Geography National Curriculum 1991
  47. 48. Geography National Curriculum 1995
  48. 49. Geography National Curriculum 2000
  49. 50. Geography National Curriculum 2008 <ul><li>Environmental interaction & sustainable development is one of the seven key concepts identified for geography </li></ul>
  50. 51. The case for a sustainable development focus <ul><li>We’re already doing it – and have been for many years </li></ul><ul><li>Significant overlap between geography & ESD </li></ul><ul><li>Sustainable development could be to geography what literacy and numeracy are to English and mathematics </li></ul>
  51. 52. So what is ESD? <ul><li>‘ ESD enables pupils to develop the knowledge, skills, understanding and values to participate in decisions about the way we do things individually and collectively, both locally and globally, that will improve the quality of life now without damaging the planet for the future’ </li></ul><ul><li>National Curriculum 2000 </li></ul>
  52. 53. Geography & sustainable development: the overlap Key processes/key elements Geography ESD fieldwork … an essential element values & attitudes issues … now & in the future how … economies, societies & environments are interconnected questioning, investigation & critical thinking responsibilities to other people, the environment … out of classroom learning viewpoints & opinions Futures systems approach – interaction between economic, social & environmental systems critical thinking …, weighing evidence, presenting reasoned argument question own lifestyles & attitudes
  53. 54. Geography & sustainable development: the overlap Concepts Geography NC GCSE Geog pilot ESD Place Space Scale Interdependence Physical & human processes Environmental interaction & sustainable development Cultural understanding & diversity Uneven development Interdependence Futures Sustainability Globalisation Citizenship & stewardship Interdependence Sustainable change Needs & rights of future generations Uncertainty & precaution Quality of life Diversity
  54. 55. Geography & sustainable development: the overlap Content Geography Flexible choice of content ESD The Sustainable Schools framework ‘doorways’* * www.teachernet.gov.uk/sustainableschools/
  55. 56. Sustainable Schools
  56. 57. Sustainable schools – travel and traffic
  57. 58. Sustainable schools – global dimension
  58. 59. The challenge for geography <ul><li>New curriculum frameworks </li></ul><ul><li>Three more years of the Action Plan for Geography </li></ul><ul><li>The Sustainable Schools strategy </li></ul>
  59. 60. Sustainable schools and geography <ul><li>So what do we need to do? </li></ul>
  60. 61. What can the GA do? <ul><li>APG sustainable development strand – curriculum development examples and online CPD on GTT website; </li></ul><ul><li>Geography Awareness Week (23-27 June) focus on sustainable schools </li></ul><ul><li>Places People Want: building sustainable communities details & online CPD on GA website; </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on sustainable development in journals (Primary Geographer, Autumn 2007; Teaching Geography, articles on sustainable schools, 2008); </li></ul>
  61. 62. What can teachers do? <ul><li>Make sustainable development more prominent and/or explicit in your new teaching schemes </li></ul><ul><li>Make explicit links to the Sustainable Schools framework in your teaching schemes </li></ul><ul><li>Check what your school is doing about the Sustainable Schools strategy and ensure SMTs know about it and the central role geography is, or should be, playing </li></ul><ul><li>Be proactive in the school’s adoption of the Sustainable Schools framework, making clear the links to geography scheme of work </li></ul><ul><li>Make geography indispensable – in terms of what and how you teach and your students learn </li></ul>
  62. 63. Geography for sustainable development … … and sustainable development of geography!

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