Resources are key to teaching Geography

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A new report by Oddizzi has found that 47% of primary teachers said that their own lack of confidence in teaching geography had a great impact on the subject in schools. The report concludes that the correct type of resources e.g. those that are inspiring, relevant and interactive, are key to help to facilitate the teaching of geography and improve standards in the subject among primary schools.

Earlier this year, a damning Ofsted report concluded that the teaching of geography was not good enough in more than half of English state schools; how the subject had practically “disappeared” in one-in-10 primaries and how many teachers lacked specialist geographical knowledge meaning classes often focused on superficial stereotypes.

One vital aspect, which was not mentioned in the Ofsted report, was the extent to which teachers feel that the quality and relevance of resources currently available to them are impacting the teaching of geography. 45% of primary school teachers in the ‘Geography Resources for Primary Teachers: the next step’ report said that this had a great impact on their current teaching. When looking at how teaching resources for geography compared with other subjects, 68% said that geography materials are significantly worse or not quite as good as materials available for other subjects.

When it came to the type of teaching resources one area that stood out was the desire for more interactivity; 67% of primary teachers say that they are not or only somewhat satisfied with the level of interactivity of current materials whilst 81% said that child friendly interactive maps would be a very interesting or essential feature of any new teaching resource (28% say it is essential).

Beyond interactive teaching resources 70% say that the inclusion of cross curricular project ideas would be very interesting or essential as a feature of a new teaching resource (27% say it is essential).

Jenny Cooke, a former primary school teacher, now with Oddizzi, said: "As a schoolteacher for over 10 years I saw how interested children were in the world but was frustrated by the lack of fun and inspiring primary geography resources available.

"The typical geography resource is often out dated and static in nature. This research reveals that primary school teachers demand an alternative that’s very current and interactive – exactly what traditional geography isn’t.”

School Leadership Today
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