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National Curriculum

ICT in geography

 

ICT learning

ICT helps pupils learn in geography by providing and extending access to large quantities of information. It can help them investigate, organise, edit and present information in many different ways.

Using ICT can help pupils to:

  • access, select and interpret information

  • recognise patterns, relationships and behaviours

  • model, predict and hypothesise

  • test reliability and accuracy

  • review and modify their work to improve the quality

  • communicate with others and present information

  • evaluate their work

  • improve efficiency

  • be creative and take risks

  • gain confidence and independence.

In geography, ICT can help pupils:

  • enhance their skills of geographical enquiry

  • extend their graphical and mapping skills, and their skills in statistical and spatial analysis

  • provide a range of information to enhance geographical knowledge and provide raw material for investigation

  • provide access to images of people, places and environments and how environments change

  • support the understanding of geographical patterns and processes and environmental and spatial relationships

  • enable them to simulate or model abstract or complex geographical systems or processes

  • enable them to communicate and exchange information with other pupils and adults in their own school and in similar/contrasting regions

  • contribute to pupils' awareness of the impact of ICT on the full range of human activities and the changing patterns of economic activities.

ICT statutory requirements

Pupils should be given opportunities to apply and develop their ICT capability through the use of ICT tools to support their learning. Here are the statutory requirements to use ICT in the geography programme of study:

Key stage 1

There is no statutory requirement to teach the use of ICT.

Key stage 2

Geographical enquiry and skills

2f: To use ICT to help in geographical investigations (for example, creating a data file to analyse fieldwork data).

ICT opportunities

Pupils should be given opportunities to apply and develop their ICT capability through the use of ICT tools to support their learning. Here are the opportunities to use ICT in the geography programme of study:

Key stage 1

Geographical enquiry and skills

2c: Use globes, maps and plans at a range of scales (for example, following a route on a map).

  • Pupils could use a programmable toy to develop instructions for following a route.

2d: Use secondary sources of information (for example, CD-ROMs, pictures, photographs, stories, information texts, videos, artefacts).

Knowledge and understanding of patterns and processes

4a: Make observations about where things are located (for example, a pedestrian crossing near school gates) and about other features in the environment (for example, seasonal changes in weather).

  • Pupils could use a digital camera to record people, places and events observed outside the classroom.

Breadth of study

6b: Pupils should be taught the knowledge, skills and understanding through the study of two localities: a locality either in the United Kingdom or overseas that has physical and/or human features that contrast with those in the locality of the school.

  • Pupils could use CD-ROMs or the internet to investigate a contrasting locality.

Key stage 2

Geographical enquiry and skills

1e: Communicate in ways appropriate to the task and audience (for example, by writing to a newspaper about a local issue, using email to exchange information about the locality with another school).

2d: To use secondary sources of information, including aerial photographs (for example, stories, information texts, the internet, satellite images, photographs, videos).

  • Pupils could use a database to sort, question and present information about different countries.

Knowledge and understanding of places

3d: To explain why places are like they are (for example, in terms of weather conditions, local resources, historical development).

  • Pupils could use the internet to access comparative weather information about different locations.

3f: To describe and explain how and why places are similar to and different from other places in the same country and elsewhere in the world (for example, comparing a village with a part of a city in the same country).

  • Pupils could use the internet to access comparative weather information about different locations.

Breadth of study

6d: How settlements differ and change, including why they differ in size and character (for example, commuter village, seaside town), and an issue arising from changes in land use (for example, the building of a new housing or a leisure complex).

  • Pupils could use email to exchange information about features of settlements with another school.

Hardware and software

Access to an automatic weather station supports work on weather and climate. More generic data-logging equipment are valuable when investigating micro-climates around the school. Pupils can use handheld sensors to measure sound pollution and a range of sensors for oxygen and pH are useful to measure the quality of water courses.

Mapping or geographic information systems (GIS) software enables pupils to access, investigate and present spatially-related data. Digital cameras offer various benefits over a conventional camera, not least the chance for pupils to review their work in the field and ensure that they are collecting suitable images for their enquiry. Portable computing enables pupils to carry out an initial analysis on the data they have collected in the field. This allows them to repeat any inaccurate experiments, thereby enhancing the fieldwork experience.

The following software and hardware can help pupils' work in geography:

  • an automatic weather station for weather and climate investigations

  • data-logging equipment for investigating micro-climates

  • oxygen and pH sensors to investigate the quality of water courses.

The following software and hardware can help pupils' learning in geography at key stages 1 and 2:

  • word processor

  • database

  • spreadsheet/graphing tool

  • multimedia/web-authoring software

  • internet browser

  • email

  • electronic atlas/encyclopaedia.

Also, the following software and hardware can help pupils' learning in geography at key stage 2:

  • modelling/simulation software

  • mapping tool, with some digital map data

  • appropriate map and statistical data

  • digital camera

  • video camera.

This content relates to the 1999 programmes of study and attainment targets.

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