The spaces of our lives
During the first term of this course, my 1st ESO students of Social Sciences developed a project called The map of my life. In this project, they made some maps using Google Maps where they presented several important places for their lives. This experience was suitable for introducing geographical concepts such as cartography and for presenting themselves to the rest of the class.
In the second term, I tried to approach this experience to challenge my pupils with a new task, focused on the diversity of spaces that exist on our planet. I made a collaborative map with different places extracted from the previous project, which contained meaningful areas according to their memories, expectatives or dreams. The map turned on a significant panel very useful to understand the variety of locations, relief elements, climates, economic resources and environmental problems in our world.
Each student made a presentation through Google Drive explaining the natural and human features of a place. This idea connects with some theories such as living space, developed by Social Geography several decades ago. According to theories, such as Kevin Lynch’s urban spaces, as space is lived, perceived and valued, it becomes more meaningful to us. Most of the 1st ESO students show a lot of difficulties to investigate and to apply acquired information in different contexts, so the goal resulted partly hard for them. The presentations were converted into a video format and embedded on the map. After that, all the pupils presented their places and conclusions to their classmates. You can access to the results of the project clicking on the picture below.
The evaluation standards were formulated in order to analyse maps information, reading correctly several aspects that are usually referred on maps; to locate correctly elements on relief maps; to identify the main relationships between climate and biomes; to link the several elements which conform geographical spaces; to describe the climate areas and how they condition economic resources and human activities; to compare the way of living of diverse societies; to be a better environmental awareness. And in addition, some useful key competences in the 21st century, For example, the initiation in investigation habits to criticise information, digital competences and oral presentations of the results.
I feel happy with the final product of the project, considering that this pupils are in the beginning of Secondary, a stage in which the students normally deal with new techniques and procedures to assimilate and to create knowledge. FInally, they worked really hard and they continually showed me their passion for learning.