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General Discussion / New A Level - Fieldwork Advice
« on: January 12, 2016, 06:55:20 PM »
As a school (and consortium of 3 schools) we are entering all students for the AS levels in Y12 and the A Level in Y13. This means I have to think carefully about fieldwork and its timing.  Is anyone else doing this - what have you decided upon? thought about?

My options as I see them:
1. Four day fieldwork trip in Y12 for all - to cover examined fieldwork and potential for individual investigations. Pros: wide range of topics can be covered = lots of potential data for Y13 investigations. Cons: cost (esp. if students then drop geog), length of time from fieldwork to write-up for Y13s.
2. 2 Day residential trip in Y12 for all, 2 days in summer term of Y12 (after AS exams) for individual investigations to be started over summer. Pros: Less time out in Y12, focus on each trip can be very clear towards either the exam or individual investigations. Cons: Students still have to pay for all trips and might still drop the subject!
3. Same as 2 but the 2 days in September after results. Pros: Only those who have continued with geog attend. Cons: Organising a trip for unknown numbers!  We miss the summer for write-up time.

Advice and other options I've not thought about welcome!

General Discussion / Re: New specs
« on: November 12, 2015, 05:54:01 AM »
The two EdEdxcel GCSE ones were accredited yesterday. No news on any of the others yet!

General Discussion / Re: Best of British geographers
« on: November 07, 2015, 08:43:07 PM »
Hans Rosling?

General Discussion / Re: AS decoupling
« on: November 07, 2015, 08:40:16 PM »
The AS will no longer be half the A level. They are two completely separate qualifications.

General Discussion / Re: Core Content overviews for new A level
« on: October 13, 2015, 08:24:44 PM »
What a great idea, thanks to Steve and all at the RGS for these. Looking forward to future editions.

General Discussion / CountryFile 06.09.15 River Restoration
« on: September 06, 2015, 07:09:03 PM »
A great section on river restoration tonight.  Can anyone help me with how I might be able to record the clip for use in school?

General Discussion / Re: GeoBytes
« on: September 06, 2015, 05:06:51 PM »
Well done Rob, it's soul destroying having to re-do lost work, but you've done a great job!

General Discussion / Re: Geography teaching hacks
« on: August 22, 2015, 06:19:18 PM »
Once you've set Word, PowerPoint etc. up to the way you like it, set it as default so it always looks that way.  You can also save templates on PowerPoint so that you can have all of one scheme of work with the same design.

Once you've finally mastered Excel and made it create you a climate graph with two axes you can save the design as a new chart type so you can make future climate graphs in seconds - that was this afternoons task - I beat Excel!!

General Discussion / Re: Geography teaching hacks
« on: August 15, 2015, 10:08:05 PM »
I'm starting to add the auto-date function to my PowerPoints, so the date will always be on the board - I never know it so this is great for me!

When marking work, as a department we give it a 'learning profile' - this is a number from 1-4 which school ask us to send home twice a term. Since we started giving work learning profiles, the kids are far more aware of where their learning profiles come from.  This only applied to work which isn't graded in another way.

Another marking tip; when marking we leave students with a question to respond too.  I bracket lines to indicate how long the response should be. Simple but very effective.

Controlled assessment and fieldwork; we give our kids A4 plastic zip wallets so work stays dry when on the actual visit. For GCSE they have a brown A4 envelope for neat work so as its finished it goes straight in.  They like being able to see it build up.

Residential trips; price up the coach and driver staying with you, we've found it to be significantly cheaper than two return trips to drop off and pick up.

Conferences: collect as many free pens, pencils, rulers etc. as you can and have them available for students who haven't got them. Saves the hassle of them finding one from a friend.

General Discussion / AQA GEO4B result query
« on: August 14, 2015, 11:52:34 PM »
I'm pleased with our results so this isn't a moan!

But I've downloaded the individual question marks for my cohort for this paper using ERA on eAQA and when I've totalled their raw marks the result I get varies hugely from the component result they've been given, which is what has been used for the conversion to UMS. To illustrate my issue, I had five candidates who, when I add the question marks, all got 40, but the component result they've got ranges from 33 to 42. When converted to UMS and a then the grade this is anything from a C to an A grade.

I understand scaling, but this isn't that as kids with the same raw mark have got very different marks. Our GEOG3 marks have clearly been scaled - I can see it clearly, how it has been applied and totally understand why it happens.

AQA are looking into it, but I've never seen it before in 10 years of teaching and am struggling to understand the results. I'm incredibly concerned that this could have affected grades and students university places. But also would like to understand what has happened.

Are there any examiners or more experienced teachers who might be able to suggest what's gone on?!

General Discussion / Re: Exotic field trip recommendations?
« on: August 03, 2015, 03:10:51 PM »
Our biology department regularly use Operation Wallacea and are currently in Dominica doing conservation and the a week diving. They've done Indonesia and South Africa before.  The boys school in town have done World Challenge a number of times. I think both run a bit higher in terms of budget though, but as trips are tailor made I'm sure you could talk to them and find a suitable destination.

General Discussion / Re: Had to share- Y7 exam answer
« on: July 04, 2015, 07:41:06 PM »
That's the way the goverment spell it isn't it?!

General Discussion / Re: Had to share- Y7 exam answer
« on: May 31, 2015, 05:24:55 PM »
Year 10 mock:
Q: Define stewardship.
A: When stewards get on ships.

Year 11 mock:
Q: Give one piece of evidence from the photo that this is an inner city area.
A: There is terrorist housing.

General Discussion / Re: NEW GCSE SPECIFICATIONS
« on: April 13, 2015, 10:46:32 PM »
They are all now available online, they were released on April 10th at the GA conference when the boards submitted their offerings to OFQUAL.  There are big changes as a result of the significant changes made to the GCSE criteria.  I'm just beginning to compare them and get my head round the options!

"Some of Britain's celebrated coastal towns are in the grip of once unimaginable levels of social breakdown as the boom in cheap foreign holidays has left its own seaside resorts swimming in crime, deprivation and unemployment.

With poverty levels up to three times the national average, many of these iconic towns have become unemployment black spots, while former hotels and guest houses are now being used to home the country's most vulnerable residents.

Ross visits the worst affected areas to investigate the human realities behind their tragic decline, and to find out what can be done to revive their fortunes."

Sounds a lot like the tourist resort life cycle model stuff I've just done with year 10!  Good timing Ross!

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