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Violent Earth Teacher Reflection

Looking back on the unit

Ian felt that several factors contributed to the success of the unit:

  • The use of video clips, particularly CCTV footage, helped to bring the experience of being in an earthquake to life
  • The practical demonstration of rocks falling on a desk while a student hid below it really engaged the students
  • The mixture of resources and techniques worked well and enthused the students.

Improving the unit

In this short interview Ian explains that in the creative writing task the geography was sometimes overshadowed by the dramatic nature of earthquakes and so the unit was modified accordingly.

He also suggests using giant world maps to show the plate boundaries.

Assessing the students’ work

All three pieces of work were assessed together and given a level from the mark scheme.

Assessment Mark Scheme

Students were given a list of ways they could have improved this project:

  • Present your work neater
  • Complete all sections of the project
  • Offer more detail in section 1
  • Research in more detail actual earthquake events
  • Convey the messages better in the leaflet
  • Finish off unfinished work
  • Write a more realistic story for section 3
  • Do all work to the best of your ability

Like many assessment mark schemes this includes generic statements and does not clearly show how the students can make progress in geography. This could be adapted to include geographical criteria such as ‘clearly locate all the places mentioned in the work’, ‘show a clear understanding of the processes that cause earthquakes’ and ‘explain the long term impacts as well as the short term impacts of an earthquake’.

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