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Where Will I Live? Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School

Where Would You be Willing to Live?

Name of Teachers

Margaret Foxley and Alan Young

Key Stage

Key Stage 4, Year 10

Focus

Where would you be willing to live within Blackburn-with-Darwen at different stages of your life?

Summary

In this scheme geography and citizenship teachers worked closely together. About one-third of the students study geography, but all have citizenship lessons. A particular feature of this work was the half day working seminar at the end of the sequence. During this morning session, students learnt from each other and started to articulate their explanations as to where they wanted to live and why. Two examples of student reasoning can be downloaded below:

Concepts and Big Ideas

  • Place
  • Space
  • Scale
  • Interdependence
  • Sustainable Communities
  • Reasoning with Maps
  • Geographical Imaginations
  • Geographical Communication

Places

Housing wards within Blackburn-with Darwen

Adapting this scheme for your own school

The idea of where would you like to live at different stages of your life was used to examine the housing stock provision in Blackburn-with-Darwen. Is there sufficient housing of different types and of different prices to meet potential need? A big challenge, and one that is key to the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister’s notion of Sustainable Communities.

It is interesting to read the student accounts, one of whom certainly doesn’t see his needs being met within England. This raises a lot of interesting dilemmas about place and identity and planning for a mobile future. Some of the tensions between mobility and community are explored by the students. Certainly many of these geographical conundrums will have resonance with the students in the place that you teach.

You may like to share the student accounts here as a stimulus to encourage your students to write a piece of their own. The essence of this scheme is that it is based on quality geographical information through place based images and statistics, (for example consider the responses of student 1, student 2, student 3) whilst also making appropriate time and space for students’ own experiences.

Files that can be downloaded to support this scheme of work

Evaluation

We have had some fascinating exchanges with both pupils and staff who have been studying the different housing wards.

We enjoyed encouraging pupils to recognise how many factors influence the access that people have as to where to buy or rent.

The youngsters seem to have enjoyed the work. Even if they don’t realise it, they have been encouraged to think in new ways about the built environment, to look at it through others’ eyes and to realise that they have a stake in its future development. Who knows – we might have helped to create some future architects, estate agents, property developers, town and country planners, geographers, local councillors, prime ministers, decent citizens…

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