Tips for Geography Success in your classroom
Geography has never been more relevant as a subject. Within many of our classroom we have pupils of diverse nationalities, religions and from countries around the world who’s ancestors, if not immediate relatives have come from many different parts of the globe. We embrace such diversity within our schools so providing children with a deeper understanding of the cultures and people that make up our society is increasingly important.Apps lend themselves really well to opening up discussion and learning around topics of Geography (both human and physical). With interaction and game-play to allow for fun and collaborative interactions between pupils, there is huge opportunity for you to incorporate geography apps in your lessons.
To this end, here are our top tips for Geography success, as ever with a digital twist:
1) Dynamic Data – There are some great apps that work in a similar way to traditional atlases but are more interactive and easier for a child (even a very young one) to access. Finding out information related to population, climate, land mass etc is easy using apps such as Barefoot World Atlas. With children able to zone into countries around the world, apps are great for kinesthetic learners and those who might struggle with accessing text in more traditional contexts.
2) Love of Language – With a large number of languages spoken in our schools, and children having a huge variety of languages other than English as a first language, it’s important for all pupils to be able to have an understanding and appreciation of the basics of at least some of these. Many of the geography apps that we review come with different language modes and so offer an opportunity, not just for English as an additional language children to have a way to easily access information, but for pupils to learn terminology and phases in different languages too.
3) Clock the country – Many children struggle when it comes to knowing where countries, and even the seven continents, are on an atlas. Atlas apps are a great way to familiarise children with the geography of the world and for them to get used to locating and naming countries, continents, oceans and even major rivers and mountain ranges. Apps like Plant Geo make this a game with children learning through fun!
4) Capitals and Cities – Children have always loved learning the major capital cities, anthems and flags. Now with many apps such as Globe Earth 3D Pro, children have a portable bank of geographical knowledge!
5) Compare and Contrast – Children like to imagine themselves living in different countries and having contrasting lives. Learning about children of a similar age but in very different cultures, climates and locations is always interesting for pupils and a good way to help them to develop empathy. Considering housing, schooling and hobbies make other cultures very real for our pupils. Globe Smart Education is an app that aims to give children an understanding of their place in the world, alongside the viewpoint of other children from different backgrounds around the globe.
Have fun leaning about the world in your classroom!