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INTERACTIVE via New York Times: Where Is America’s Heartland? Pick Your Map

January 5, 2017 // 0 Comments

Where is America’s Heartland? Pick your Map This short interactive has users choose a map that they feel best represents the “American Heartland.” After voting, they will see a tally and an article that discusses the topic of what the Heartland means to other people. Human Geography Application: This would be a good, 2 minute activity to direct students with 1:1 devices after discussing vernacular [...]

Interactive via PBS: Can You Tell Someone’s Race by Looking at Them?

January 3, 2017 // 0 Comments

Race: The Power of Illusion Via PBS:  How easy is it to group people into “races” based on appearance? What about using individual traits? Does everybody classify the same way? Try your hand at “sorting” individuals and see if it matches how people think of themselves. Or explore how we might sort people by physical traits. Human Geography Application: After a lecture/discussion about the topic of race, ethnicity, and nationality, have your students complete this PBS interactive. It helps show them what they really don’t know about race based upon appearances. This could be a short 5-minute 1:1 activity on a device that supports flash, or it could stretch an entire block with interwoven discussion on race and [...]

AUDIO via NPR: In ‘1493’ Columbus Shaped a World To Be

October 13, 2014 // 0 Comments

This 37 minute story is great for kids in a 1:1 environment, or for a different homework assignment. The author Charles C. Mann discusses Christopher Columbus docking in the ‘New World’ and the ecological effects of bringing in invasive species to the Americas. This is a great transition from the Introduction unit to Agriculture (and also right around the time we are ‘celebrating’ Columbus Day at the mall. In 1493, Columbus Shaped a World To [...]

RESOURCE: Sample Pacing Chart

August 5, 2014 // 0 Comments

As the upcoming school year begins, I wanted to draft a visual representation of my pacing chart that I used for the 2013-2014 school year. A couple of things to note here is that my district used 3 snow days last year during the winter months. You will also notice that there are two blank days before Spring Break to grudgingly accommodate the students whose parents let them go on cruises two days before break actually starts. There are also two days where I begin my language unit before winter break for similar reasons, and so that I can assure that everyone has completed exams before break begins. The Introduction unit tends to be the longest, however this is the time of year that I am establishing my classroom, getting my students to understand their new role as 1:1 iPad students, as well as teaching them about many fundamentals that we use throughout the rest of the school year. I have tried to cut this unit down in the past, but it continues to be an important unit for us and [...]

Observations from the 2014 AP Human Geography Reading

June 11, 2014 // 4 Comments

Once again the AP Human Geography reading was a success. I still firmly believe that this group pf 500+ teachers and professors have GOT to be the most extraordinary and interesting people than any other group of readers. The stories that we all overhear while riding up the escalator for lunch are unbelievable and  inspires me to keep pushing to be a better teacher than I was yesterday. Never mind the 1125 free response questions that I graded- this is by far the best professional development that I can ever get. I am very thankful for a productive professional development night, and all of the other “professional development” nights outside of the convention center. After pondering the rubric that we used for grading and discussing it with my table, I decided to do some further research into the previous years and see what types of verbs that the FRQ test requests the students to answer. Some of my findings were interesting and provoked more thought while others were [...]

NEWS via Mashable: Mapmakers Debate How to Define Crimea

March 21, 2014 // 0 Comments

Mapmakers Debate How to Define Crimea A cartographer at work, circa 1930.IMAGE: VINTAGE IMAGES/HULTON ARCHIVE/GETTY IMAGES BY COLIN DAILEDA1 DAY AGO Much of the world is watching how the high-stakes tug-of-war over Crimea will play out, but few groups of professionals are more invested than cartographers. Cartographers are tasked with mapping the political dimensions of the globe. That means when a piece of land switches ownership between countries, it’s their job to decide whether they want to make that change official. The latest debate for this small but influential club is centered on Crimea, the once-autonomous region of Ukraine that voted on March 16 to become a part of Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a treaty to annex the peninsula, and it now must be approved by the Russian parliament. On Wednesday, the Ukrainian governmentannounced it was pulling out its troops. But Western nations including the United States, the U.K., and Germany, have not [...]

RESOURCE: Geography Related iPad Apps for the Student and Teacher

August 18, 2013 // 0 Comments

As I continue to expand my iPad classroom, I am discovering a bunch of content specific apps for geography that will be great to use both in and out of the classroom. Here is a list of the ones I have accumulated on my iPad thus far: CNN: A must for news. TED: A must for inspiration Discovery Education: A must for short clips and full length videos that provide a wide range of topics Google Earth: A must for…Duh… ArcGIS: A must for showing image overlays and from the GIS pros. This is great for helping to show the power of GIS. QuakeFeed: An app that shows recent seismic activity all over the world using maps and a Richter Scale. Living Earth: An app that shows the World Time and Weather patterns on a moving 3D Earth. Wolfram Geography: Wolfram has always been great with providing statistics and fast, but this one is tailored just for geography. Topics range from Physical geography, geology and climate, political geography, demographics, economics, and social statistics. [...]

LESSON PLAN: My Life as a Refugee

June 12, 2013 // 0 Comments

A choose-your-own-adventure for the topic of refugees. Topics: Population and Migration, Refugees, Push Factors, Supranational Organizations, NGOs TIme: 50 minutes Materials: My Life as a Refugee app for iPad/iPhone/Android Purpose: To have the students see what difficult decisions that refugees must make. Procedure: 1) Lecture/Discussion: What is a refugee? Discuss push factors. Where are the World’s largest refugee populations in each region of the World and why. 2) Have the students download the My Life as a Refugee app. 3) Have the students write down the decisions that their character made along their refugee path. 4) Debrief as a class: What were the different decisions that your refugee made? Which do you think were the most life-threatening. [...]
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