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Thursday, November 23, 2006

Reflection 5: Big Ideas/Concepts in Geography

I performed a search online and chanced upon this website: http://www.geographyteachingtoday.org.uk/pilot-gcse/course-work-and-assessment/using-concepts/

The Geographical Association has highlighted 5 key concepts that spans through geographical education. These concepts are:

  1. Uneven Development
  2. Interdependence
  3. Futures
  4. Sustainability
  5. Globalization

These concepts are chosen as they span through several geographical interests. These concepts are not just within the study of geography but they are multi-disciplinary in nature across history, politics, economics and science, etc.

In the teaching of geography, it is essential that we introduce these concepts at a more basic level to secondary students. These concepts are complex and multi-faceted thus it is important that students get acquainted with them at a lower, basic level. The geographical education at the secondary level also serves as a foundation course for students to study these concepts in depth at higher levels.

These concepts may seem abstract and difficult for students to understand at secondary level. Therefore, teachers should try to explain these concepts in simpler, easier to understand ways for students to grasp better.

For example for the concept of uneven development, teachers can give students two examples of countries; say a developed country and a developing country. The teacher can then lead students to describe the differences between these two countries and therefore relate the differences to uneven development. In this way, complicated concepts can be simplified and easily understood.

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