First think about what progression the students can make…
- To move from the known (our place) to the unknown (the Outback of Australia)
- To develop an understanding of key concepts such as place, scale and space
- To make informed decisions using geographical evidence
- To work towards the application of higher order skills such as analysis and evaluation.
How are you going to get the students motivated?
Adapted from Cornell 1989
1. Awaken enthusiasm
The enquiry question formed the motivational ‘hook’:
How long does it take you to get to school each morning?
Imagine having a ten hour drive to school.
How would you, your family and the local community cope with this situation?
2. Focus attention
The design of activities that challenged our learners in a fun and creative way and required concentration including: the ‘think of the link’ activity, jigsaw task, the opportunity for model making, using music/film and designing websites.
3. Share inspiration
The development of interesting ways for our learners to reflect together on what they have learned for example with their ‘Reflection Logs’ and ‘Reflection Blobs’.
Progression was observed and reflected on by both teacher and learner.
Key points were recorded in personal ‘Reflection Logs’ at the end of each lesson.
Structured Interim and plenary debriefs reflecting on ‘What have I learnt? How did I learn?’ were undertaken regularly.
Personalisation of the curriculum
It is really important to personalise the curriculum even when learning about such distant places. We apply a range of strategies such as:
- Drawing on personal experience.
- Providing a series of THINK POINTS giving our learners the opportunity to question, to imagine, to discuss and to reflect on the issues presented.
Examples of strategies
1. The enquiry question
- How long does it take you to get to school each morning?
- Imagine having a ten hour drive to school.
- How would you, your family and the local community cope with this situation?
2. ‘My Route to School’ – discussion
- How long does it take you to get to school?
- What forms of transport can you use to reach school?
- Describe your route to school – road names, directions
- Any issues? Solutions?
3. Alice Springs – Would you like to live here? Why? Why not?
4. Our School compared with the School of the Air. THINK POINT – Do your school grounds look like these? What is the same? What is different? Why?
5. A picture taken of pupils of the School of the Air listening to the first broadcast in 1950. What do you think of Lynette’s and Rob’s classroom?