Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Field visit Arkengarthdale river study

Arkle Beck is a tributary to the River Swale. It starts at 627m above sea level on the moors above the valley of Arkengarthdale and flows for 20km before joining the River Swale just below Reeth where it is 176 m above sea level.
The following photos are from 3 sites along Arkle beck.
1. William Gill G.R 93207
2. Eskeleth G.R 998036
3. Reeth G.R 044987

We expected to observe the following changes:
The size of the river channel increases
The volume of the discharge increases
The velocity of the river water increases
The size of the bed load decreases and becomes more rounded
The shape of the valley changes from a V shape to a valley with a floodplain so more U in shape

What do you think we found from the following photos?

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

A range of ways I've used geocaching in (outside) the classroom

Does your school have a high percentage of students who are not engaged and stood bored at break time, lunch time and before school waiting for the day to begin? 
Geocaching projects might be an option for your students!

Here is a simple guide as to how to set up a geocache geocaching introduction I will then go through a range of strategies I have used it in conjunction with.

  • Change on a weekly basis.
  • Competition between form classes/houses.
  • Have mascots with trackable so students get to use GPS. Students can take other groups mascots hostage and produce clues using learning during the week.
  • students with geocaching tasks have to communicate with each other and so they find out about each others learning and so it assists students skills at collaboration, teamwork and inter and intra personal skills.
  • Students in house can nominate who will go on mission try to link in with different years.
  • Link to marking so a teacher can give a few students a message. A way of getting students to check written comments more thoroughly. Students write a comment back about work and the geocache message.
  • Students get given missions with geocache get agents in all the continents by the end of 48 hours. 
  • iPhone 4 secret mission with text message students find via find my iphone application, to open link to learning. Further clue linked to QR code and teacher students work a riddle out. Link to Iamlearning and a place name in a certain task. Give students outdoor fun tasks from the mission:explore range. 
  • Students have created tour guide to local sites and attractions in area @Kenny73
  • Make class geocache made one about coursework about local river.
  • About local geography in that area
  • Students with project with parents for doomsday reloaded add a geocache at picture site with how site looked and how it does now add stories for how students use that area in their lives and how parents use to live. This project has been very successful.

This whole project and Kinect in class have been used to engage students to move about and be excited and intrigued to participate as linked to school reward system.

Now over to you to track down the #tmthink geocache you will get a clue to find an agent in the room who will give you the final clue to hunt down the hidden geocache. Be quick before someone else finds it!

Doomsday Reloaded Parent child peer collaboration and geocache

Over the last month couple of months I have taken geocaching into (and more importantly outside of) the classroom, embeding it into the learning.

In the last week I have been on a year 9 controlled assessment field visit. On the visit the class placed a geocache which had an information booklet and a QR code of the guide to a blog site of the geographical history and landscape characteristics that people were looking at at that specific part of their walk / cycle ride. So if you are near William Gill near Tan Hill Grid Reference 932071 Or Reeth Grid Reference 044987 you can hunt for a geocache (to get confirmation from Geocache) about Arkle Beck.

I first started off by getting students to create their own geocache (click on the link here to visit the geocache website and watch the video on the home page on how to geocache geocaching introduction. Click on the 2nd link for a guide on how to set up your own geocache geocaching guides) and writing about the learning that they have done in school over the last term. Students then created a QR code which would take them to the work that they had produced on a blog.

Over the last week I have developed this to incorporate the BBC doomsday project. This was a nationwide project launched in 1986 to record a snapshot of everyday life across the UK for future generations. Now 25 years later you can explore the archive online, see the pictures, update the information and make your mark on this record of our history.

My interpretation of the project has been for students to fill out a booklet with their parents of their everyday lives for the students NOW and for their parents / carers / guardians / aunts / uncles / grand parents to write down what their everyday life was like 25 years ago. I've found this has worked best with photographs. Students have been really interested in seeing old photos of their parents with their fashion sense, hair cuts (perms), dogey facial hair and glasses. I've tried to request that parents find photos of what Darlington looked like 25 years (or so) ago and then the students go to the same spot and take a photo today This gets them familiar with their surroundings and looking at a scene in a different manor.

This is where the geocache comes in. Parents and students include photos of the same site and they compare the similarities and the differences and their comparison stories of life 25 years ago and now. The students and parents then go and make a geocache and hide it for the next generation to find and update.

The final element of the project is to get parents and students to present their doomsday reloaded projects to the rest of the class.