VIDEO: The Disturbing History of the Suburbs via Adam Ruins Everything

October 8, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you’re looking for a way to explain the long lasting effects of systemic racism (at least in terms of housing and poverty), watch the Adam Ruins Everything episode clip on REDLINING. I like to remind kids that when talking about race, the purpose is not to make someone feel guilty and implicit, it is to make people understand the roots of socio-economic disparities, and to see how white-privilage already places some at an advantage even before they are born. [...]

LESSON PLAN: Who Grows There?

October 1, 2017 // 0 Comments

LESSON PLAN: My Human Geography students are extremely fortunate to go on three field trips already. One that is NOT included is one to a variety of local food markets. We have a bunch of different ethnic groups represented in our area all with their respective food stores. So, the next best thing I can do is bring the market to them. After covering intensive/extensive, subsistence/commercial farming types in class lecture, we need to start placing these agricultural activities on the map. I plan on having kids walk around the room looking at different crops and telling me where on the map it is found (and countries), how it grows, and what type of commercial agriculture it likely is: extensive grain cropping, intensive grain cropping, market gardening, mixed crop livestock, plantation (LDC), speciality crop (MDC), Aquaculture, Ranching, and Dairying (I think I hit them all). I picked up about 15-20 items from the store that will work well in class (no dairy/meat/fish) and placed them [...]

INTERACTIVE: The Art of Gerrymandering

September 16, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you want to see how voting districts have been gerrymandered over time, check out The Art of Gerrymandering. It gives you the ability to toggle through fifty years of voting district maps for each state of the union. It also gives a primer on the topic of redistricting and gerrymandering to start. Thanks to Emily C. from the Facebook group for the [...]

Lessons & Worksheets: Map Scale via the U.S. Department of then Interior

September 2, 2017 // 0 Comments

Have students read up on map scale with information that comes straight from the professionals. The U.S. Geologic Survey has a write-up about MAP SCALE that is clear and concise. This is a great take-home read for homework, or a quick in-class popcorn read. Lexile® Measure: 900L – 1000L (8th grade reading level) Download the PDF below: Map Scale Geologic Survey Reading [...]

INTERACTIVE: Boomtown Flood Town

August 30, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you want an opportunity to show how GIS can help solve real world problems and discover correlation, look no further! Boomtown, Flood Town is an interactive article with map overlays that show Houston and the many different variables that pertain to flooding.  [...]

Lessons & Worksheets: The Five Themes of Geography and Current Events

August 18, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you want your students to start engaging with new sources and happen to be studying the five themes of geography, here is a worksheet for you. Step 1: Have your kids learn about the five themes of geography via lecture, research, or article. Here are good summary notes provided by Stanislaus University if you need a place to start. Step 2: The Five Themes of Geography in Practice together and let the kids work either alone or in groups to find current event article that can relate to each of the five themes. I’ve found this best done as an in-class activity to help answer their questions and guide their thinking. I have students type in a topic in Google and then click on news to see what interesting news articles pop up. Some students might struggle with creative thought here and try to simply type in “Location” or “Five Themes of Geography” which will typically not yield good search results. Tell them to refer back to their notes and try to think of [...]

Lessons & Worksheets: Site & Situation Factors

August 3, 2017 // 0 Comments

Greetings! It’s nap time in the house so I whipped up a site and situation worksheet for you to enjoy. Topics cover SITE, SITUATION, ABSOLUTE LOCATION, and RELATIVE LOCATION. If you haven’t also checked out the Stratfor-Geographic Challenges Youtube channel-GET ON IT! These are two-minute video clips on a bunch of countries, explaining their geographic sites and situations. I use it in this worksheet. If your kids aren’t 1:1, you could complete the Youtube task as a class. Download Worksheet Key and Worksheet Blank HERE:  Site and Situation Worksheet Now check out Stratfor’s Youtube Channel! [...]

LESSONS AND WORKSHEETS: Enclaves and Exclaves-ESRI Storymap

July 24, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you haven’t checked out ESRI’s collection of story maps yet, now is the time! These are great little interactive stories that are fun to scroll through-including this one on the topic of ENCLAVES and EXCLAVES. Have you ever lectured on this topic and students always ask, “Well, can an enclave touch water? Is an exclave still an exclave if there is a lake in it? How about if it is touching another country?” If I had a dollar for every… But luckily, this storymap answers their most burning questions. The best part is, students can go at their own pace! ESRI Storymap Exclave Enclave Attached is a worksheet I whipped up that goes with the ESRI Storymap. Use or refuse. Enjoy the worksheet here: Enclaves and Exclaves ESRI Storymap Shoutout: To J. Hemmings for posting about this on [...]

The Art of Making Globes

July 15, 2017 // 0 Comments

What I really like about this collection of short video clips is seeing how much art is incorporated in the creation of something that requires such precision. Art and science mix to create this beautiful thing that continues to draw imagination and inspiration for those aged 3-103. This first video shows the process of making globes at a North London firm of geographers circa 1955. My favorite part is where they apply the smooth layer of plaster to make the sphere, and then smooth out the image strips letting the glue smoosh out. Click to play linked video The next video show globes constructed by factory machine. It reminds of on an episode of How It’s Made. Click image to watch linked video. Of course, you can still buy a globe made the old school way, bit it will cost you! One of their modest handcrafted masterpieces costs a cool $2000.00. Bellerby & Co. Globe Makers                             [...]

Resource: All Models are Wrong

July 13, 2017 // 0 Comments

Thanks to a Facebook poster, Betsy Smalley for posting the original article. This is very relevant to all of us who teach Human Geography and teach all of the geographic models. Sometimes students (and teachers alike) don’t understand why we need to learn the models, and why there are always exceptions to the rules. This article does a great job explaining the purpose behind a model and why it is better left imperfect. The article is edited from the original to make useable in the classroom. For the complete article, follow the link HERE. Edited version below: All Models Are Wrong [...]

NEWS via Marketplace: Small-scale manufacturing is on the rise in American cities

June 20, 2017 // 0 Comments

Time: 3 min. 36 sec. Have students listen to a contemporary example of how one Rust-Belt city is making it’s comeback (Duluth, Minn.) This would be a great story to have students listen to for homework that would strengthen your lecture on the Rust Belt, Deindustrialization, Redevelopment, Urban Renewal/Revival, Craft Cities, and in general-Development. “Three decades ago, Duluth, Minnesota, was in the doldrums. A steel mill had just closed. Unemployment was more than 20 percent. Someone posted a billboard on the way out of town that read: “Last one out, turn out the lights.” “We were as Rust Belt as they come,” recalled Andy Goldfine, who in 1984 rented an old three-story brick building, bought a bunch of used sewing machines and started a company called Aerostich. His vision was to make motorcycle gear for hard-core riders to wear over their work clothes…..” Full transcript available at the [...]

INTERACTIVE: Compare Map Projections via

June 17, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you’re looking to show your students the quick difference between conic, cylindric, and planar-look no further. This great website by Tobias Jung compares 150+ different map projections. Remember that for Human Geography, our course description asks for students to: “Use and interpret maps” and understand, “All map projections (e.g., Mercator, polar) inevitably distort spatial relationships (e.g., shape, area, distance, direction).” Don’t be overwhelmed, this does not mean the goal is to memorize them all. Create a lesson showing students how cartographers attempt to show the round Earth on a projected flat surface. Students (or other interested parties), can select two maps to compare at once. You can have the kids select different aspects that you want them to compare and then write about the differences. Equidistant vs. Equal-Area? No problem! Check out the comparison website, it rocks. Thanks for the tip from our Facebook group for this [...]

Professional Development Night at the 2017 AP Human Reading

June 11, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you haven’t had the chance to grade hundreds (for some of you thousands) of AP exams, I highly suggest that you do it at least once. While the reading itself can be grueling, there is no other place in the world where so many high school and college educators geek out about Human Geography, in one place. While walking to breakfast one morning, I overheard a man describe how he helped his wife give birth by candlelight in Uganda-needless to say, the stories here are unreal. And while it is difficult to squeeze in a professional development night between a Reds game and a peddle-bike tour of Cincinnati, it is an event that I never miss, because here, you will find the best of the best. The All-Americans of AP Human Geography. With 37 possible roundtable presentations, I was able to hit five, 15-minute talks. GIS, Geoinquiries, and APHG: Presented by Georgeanne Hribar of Old Dominion U. and Phillip Hare of A. C. Flora H.S. We need to make sure that our students [...]

Google Doc: 2017 Collaborative FRQ Rubric

May 15, 2017 // 0 Comments

If you would like to discuss the FRQs with your students today, here is a collaborative rubric to share/review ideas.  Try not to delete the questions themselves and just add to the rubric sections if editing. Enjoy the Monday! [...]

WEBCOMIC: Themes and Traditions of Geography

April 2, 2017 // 0 Comments

This page is the first of many within this section of the chapter. On this page, we learn the difference between cultural geography and physical geography, why math is still important, and how to be a triple threat. Click to enjoy Themes & Traditions of [...]

WEBCOMIC: Human Geography in Practice-Collecting the Data

April 1, 2017 // 0 Comments

These pages address the marriage of the humanities and the sciences, and how we get and use data. Vocab includes: Data aggregation, primary data, secondary data, satellite imagery, remote sensing, quantitative data, qualitative data, group study, and case study. Click to Enjoy Human Geography in Practice-Collecting the [...]

WEBCOMIC: What is Human Geography?

March 31, 2017 // 0 Comments

The first page addressing “What is Human Geography” is now up. Vocabulary terms include: Human Geography, Why of Where, and Geographic Models. Click to enjoy! [...]
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