Creating a spectacle in school

I have issues with presentations. They remind me of sad, middle management meetings in grey offices all over the world, where lots of people nod and look pleased with themselves. My year 8 classes have just finished a small presentation task around limiting water usage in the UK. They were not bad, if a little far fetched. But the most annoying part was the lack of spectacle so for their end of term assessment ( a pitch for a brownfield development of the school site) I have chosen something different.

To enhance the idea of spectacle and the fact that we have had some practice on public speaking, I have booked the hall for the final lesson. Now there are no exams and PE are outside, we are going to crank up the sound system ( each group has to have a theme tune to walk on to), turn the spotlights on and focus in for the razzledazzle of redeveloping our school. To heighten the tension, SLT members have filmed the design brief to start the task and will decide on the best pitch.

To add a bit of guerrilla Geography ( shout out to Dan Raven-Ellison)  to the task, once the pupils have decided on how to redevelop the school, they have to complete the attached planning permission sheet and post it in the correct location in the school. This is without telling the caretakers, so that could be interesting, but has meant they are quite excited about where they are developing.

I am hoping that exposing the pupils to this kind of environment will help them build confidence in their public speaking, really think about how to present their information and hone their talents of presentation. I will post some photos once they are done, but I am thoroughly looking forward to it!

year 8 brownfield development fieldwork

year 8 Planning permission



Using snakes and ladders to elucidate concepts

On twitter and from the most recent GA conference ( that I couldn’t attend! ) it was evident that Geodebs was all over games in the classroom and it inspired me to have a go at making climate change slightly more engaging. The topic is somewhat over done across key stage 3, 4 and 5 and quite often the actual lessons tend to be quite dry so getting some games is was an aim.

I went with a Snakes and Ladders format, got some blockbuster music to open it up and added an evaluative aspect to see what the kids thought was decent about it. The kids enjoyed playing and even suggested some great ideas for development, when I teach it again after half term, I think I will make more of the knowledge that I hope the pupils can take from the game!

See what you think!

climate change the game