Valuing Places was a CPD-led curriculum development project (2003-06) which explored how teaching about places within key stages 2 and 3 developed students’ understanding of global interconnections. It paving the way for the GA’s later work on ‘Living Geography’.
- Increase public understanding of our global mutual dependence and the need for international development by valuing the uniqueness of places at a variety of scales and exploring how these are interconnected.
- Educate every pupil in the country about development issues so that they can understand the key global considerations that will shape their lives.
- Establish a real understanding of our interdependence and of the relevance of development issues to people’s everyday lives.
By exploring localities familiar to us and linking these at a variety of scales, Valuing Places was about valuing ourselves in those places, revealing our roles and responsibilities towards both the people and environment and all the other places that our place is linked to.
Another key focus of the project was inclusivity. Through the involvement of an extremely large number of teachers and pupils a wide range of teaching and learning styles was used both in terms of professional development and in terms of the resources produced.
Valuing Places also aimed to promote opportunities to raise standards of achievement. Teachers were engaged and motivated by their involvement in some sophisticated debates about the global dimension in their teaching about place. Pupils were equally valued, since they were the starting point of the work – their views, their places and their connections with the wider world.
Project activities and achievements
Valuing Places brought together a wide range of people from all areas of the country including GA volunteers, members, practising teachers and pupils. Many participants were heavily involved with development education and national projects involving the global dimension. The project generated discussion and curriculum materials relevant to both teachers and pupils of geography at key stages 2 and 3.
Project CPD units were created to share tasters of the ‘big ideas’ that the Valuing Places project explored. Many of these focus on images of China but can be applied to other resources. Each idea is accompanied by a curriculum review activity and a classroom idea. The activities are appropriate for key stages 2 and 3.
Valuing places project CPD units:
- Geographical Imaginations
- Think Maps
- Place and Interconnectedness
- Suggestions for further activities
The Spring 2005 issue of Teaching Geography was a Valuing Places special and contained more than 20 articles related to the project and themes of space, place, identity and interconnectedness.