The way geography is taught is crucial for the future of the environment
I recently read an article by Paul Baker in the Prep School Magazine which stated the case for the teaching of geography to help future generations to deal with environmental change.
During the creative curriculum movement of the late noughties I felt that geography had become somewhat subsumed into a topic based approach which tended to favour history. There were environmental elements involved and a very skilful teacher could balance the curriculum, but it was difficult to include the elements of physical geography that are the backbone of the subject.
At Portsmouth High Prep School we have always promoted our different subjects and the teaching of geography as a discrete subject continues to this day. It may well be linked to a topic but will still involve the different skills that needed to be able to understand the themes properly. It also fits very well into our Explorers theme which promotes thinking and core competencies which work across the curriculum.
Paul Baker mentions in his article: Teachers should be teaching relevant and responsible geography and this should be taught in a way to foster pupil’s creativity, knowledge, understanding and skills, to allow them to be environmentally responsible citizens in the 21st century.
This summarises our approach to the subject perfectly. Our girls are constantly challenged on their approaches and views whilst being given the knowledge on which to base them. At present there is a real drive in school towards sustainability and we are encouraging the girls to be at the forefront. Watch this space for more information in the future. We have made real progress on recycling, reduced or eradicated single use plastics and moved away from plastic-based glitter.
Another quote from the article articulates our attitude once again: From Year 1 to Year 8 critical thinking should be thought of as a twin companion to creativity.