On solid ground;Secondary;Reviews;Subject of the Week - Geography

27th March 1998 at 00:00
CAMBRIDGE GEOGRAPHY PROJECT. World Geography Core Book. By Andy Beaumont, Jane Herrington and Rob Wheatley. Cambridge University. Press pound;10.95.

HEINEMANN GEOGRAPHY FOR AVERY HILL SERIES. Climate, The Environment and People. By Gary Cambers and Stuart Currie. Heinemann. Student's book pound;5.99. Teacher's resource pack pound;38.95

These texts, written for teachers of the new, revised syllabus, are high-quality resources, but may appeal to slightly different audiences.

World Geography Core Book is a one-book course, which could be supplemented with material from the previously published World Geography Case Studies as part of the Cambridge Geography Project. It has several novel features, including "Thinking Geography" sections at the end of each of the five chapters. These allow pupils to explore ideas such as nationalism, correcting bias and globalisation.

The book is full of thoughtful and challenging tasks. Excellent statistics support many informative case studies. There are also longer sections of text and an excellent glossary and index. A few map outlines are provided as a resource pack. It is a shame that world maps in the main book show the northern half of the Earth to be larger than the southern.

Climate, The Environment and People is a much shorter text than the World Geography Core Book. It is the first in a series of four and is supplemented by an extensive teacher's pack. The specimen GCSE questions and mark schemes could help in the first few years of the new exam.

Some of the many maps are used as background without frames, which could be confusing. Tasks also refer repetitively to sources. A big problem in a short book like this is sustaining worthwhile, detailed tasks with relatively limited source material - hence the need for such a large teacher's pack.

The intended readership includes pupils who may receive a Certificate of Achievement as well as those capable of A* at GCSE. There are useful matrices for matching the material with elements of key skills for pupils on vocational courses.

Andy Schofield is deputy headteacher at Varndean School, Brighton

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