Sunday, 19 January 2014

Why use GIS? Article worth reading in Teaching Geography!

Following on from my previous post about GIS I delivered a CPD session to members of my department. One of the most useful sources that I found was an article from Teaching Geography, which is definitely worth a read if you are unsure of whether to attempt using GIS:

Mitchell, L. (2010) Why use GIS? Teaching Geography 35 (1), p.18-20
If you are a GA member you may be able to access the journal online -

The following quote in particular was very useful in trying to convince my department that GIS was not a difficult thing to use or expensive...

“I had spoken to geography teachers who feared that using GIS could be too complicated, for themselves and for students. However, I found the opposite to be true.
Moreover, it was easy to incorporate GIS into existing schemes of works, it didn’t incur any additional costs and, importantly, it didn’t require too much extra planning and preparation.” (p.18)


Sunday, 5 January 2014

What are Kew Gardens doing in Sumatra?

Putting GIS into tropical rainforests scheme of work

For a Year 9 SOW I was trying to think of different ways of using GIS (instead of just Google Earth or Scribble Maps) and came across a project by Kew Gardens in the rainforest of Sumatra.

This is a great example of how GIS is actually used by scientists and links to a news story about how Google Earth have also been mapping the rainforest. This way students can learn about the importance of GIS whilst also practising their own IT skills.

I created a worksheet for students to follow researching what Kew Gardens are trying to do in Sumatra whilst also plotting their findings on Scribble Maps. Through a series of tasks students focus on the conservation of tropical rainforests and the higher ability students are challenged to consider the benefits and problems of using GIS.