Teachers share their tips

19th April 1996 at 01:00
In some primary schools projects are organised so that pupils may spend a term or more on history (with geography neglected), probably followed by a geographical project (with history neglected).

Here's a way of overcoming this problem which also helps develop independence in learning.

When my class of Year 56 pupils studied the Tudors, we brought in geography by asking them to answer to their names during registration by saying something in a language other than English. They used the same response for a week, and then on Friday, wrote up whatever they had discovered about a country where their language was spoken, including a map showing location, flag, capital city and other features.

They have been encouraged to use a different language each week (or at least to study a different country - one boy is working his way around the Spanish-speaking South American countries).

The pattern changes when the class embarks on a geography project. The pupils are asked to assume the identity of a historical character each week, and answer in that person's name. At the end of each week, the children write up what they have discovered about their historical figure. It not only encourages learning, but makes registration more fun for the teacher, too.

Roy Honeybone Deputy head, Mansbridge School Southampton Put a few coloured bath crystals in the water that junior and middle school pupils use for scientific experiments. The children find it much easier to measure volumes and to find the capacities of containers, since they can distinguish markings more readily. They also think it's a lot more fun.

MARLENE GRIFFIN

Hitchin Girls' School

Hertfordshire

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