Sunday, December 30, 2007
And also there was British Bulldogs...
Unfortunately, they're now all banned...
British Bulldogs is also a phrase often used to refer to people who are patriotic...
The British Bulldog is a symbol of England...
The British are "the bulldog breed"
More recently, issues of national identity have come to the fore with discussions on the newly multicultural / pluralist nature of the UK.
BBC BREAKFAST had a feature on national identity in 2004, and some interesting contents are still available.
Check the excellent BBC BORN ABROAD minisite: 7.5% of people living in the UK were born abroad. Translate that to the population of your school....
This rises to ONE IN THREE IN LONDON....
That then reminded me of the WORLD IN A CITY blog and article in the Guardian, which has a great interactive map and stuff...
How about an activity where you start with people and ask the question: "Born in the UK or not ?"
Here's a sample:
DIDIER DROGBA (specially for Miss Muncaster)
er... some more to come... Any suggestions for ones that students will recognise ?
Also came across this DAILY MAIL article on Rural UK, and Service Deserts and Yorkshire vineyards...
Image via Flickr (various users)
This is a bit of a hot potato to get to grips with. It's important to offer a balanced view of all the issues related to the contemporary nature of the UK.
There was also the recent story in the paper related to the change to a 'pluralist' balance of population in cities in the UK.
It was suggested that Leicester would be the first city to get to this point.
One slogan used in Leicester railway station to describe the place is a 'Diverse-city' of people.
The phrase "sleepwalking to segregation" has emerged...
Richard Littlejohn in the Daily Mail can usually be relied upon to say something that gets people talking... or ranting... Click the link for an interesting take on the Citizenship Guide.
There was also a survey carried out on the attitudes of people in the UK in November 2007, which was also reported in the Daily Mail
The findings are in the image above... Could make an interesting Have I got news for you style activity out of the results, or guess the percentage - that might make a good starter to the lesson.
One idea for you: making a cultural geography EASTER EGG using the DUMPR generator. Why not put an image from another culture on it ? (Idea via Flickr user charmante)
This is an introduction to this idea, with a sort of quiz to get them thinking (hopefully) about the issue of culture and its relationship to groups within the population.
Culture is manifested in music, literature, painting and sculpture, theatre and film and other things. Although some people identify culture in terms of consumption and consumer goods (as in high culture, low culture, folk culture, or popular culture), anthropologists understand "culture" to refer not only to consumption goods, but to the general processes which produce such goods and give them meaning, and to the social relationships and practices in which such objects and processes become embedded. For them, culture thus includes technology, art, science, as well as moral systems.
If you want to
JAMENDO is a source for free music (thanks to Noel Jenkins for the tip-off)
Some interesting stuff in one of my Christmas presents too:
The Pub Landlord's : BOOK OF BRITISH COMMON SENSE.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Click the front cover image for more details...There are already over 50 COMMENTS on the blog related to this story.. Would make a good example for Cultural Geography and also Global Branding...
Which group are you in ?
I'm a picky ominivore...
Monday, December 17, 2007
Friday, December 14, 2007
We spotted about 40 or more cultural references to people, films, food, daily life, language (spelling color with a 'u')
We also discussed why it was called the Regina Monologues, but we won't go into that here, it's a family blog....
Don't forget WIKIPEDIA for more information too on this episode...
Also looked at the BBC NEWSROUND story from the time that the episode was first shown, where it was suggested that David Beckham was not famous enough. Would that change now that he plays for LA Galaxy ?
And if you want to make your own SIMPSONS AVATAR or CHARACTER, you can visit the SIMPSONS MOVIE site. Here is an image of me as a Simpsons character:
Why not make you ?
The SIMPSONS CRAZY site features a large selection of Screenshots (as they do for each Simpsons episode), which is a great resource for teachers who want to produce worksheets related to particular episodes that they might use.
Don't forget the Simpsons page of GEOGRAPHYPAGES too.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
OUR WORLD FILM FESTIVAL
The night before next year's GA Conference is the OUR WORLD FILM FESTIVAL.
This is being organised in association with the GIVE GEOGRAPHY ITS PLACE campaign.
| A showcase of geographical filmmaking, Our World Film Festival is a visual adventure into our changing planet to promote our understanding of the geographies that we live. |
Our World will be a wonderful mix of films made by both first-timers and professionals alike. If you haven't made a film before we have some support for you at the end of this page.
|Booking: Tickets will go on sale from Sunday 24 February at the Odeon Box Office. You can book in person, by phone or on the web. Further details will be provided soon. |
11:00 - 12:00 £2.00
Student films: Do you really know where you live?
Teacher films: Extreme geography
An outstanding showcase of short films submitted for the 2008 geography@work film-making competition that test geography's boundaries.
A Crude Awakening: The Oil Crash
12:30 - 14:30 £3.00
Feature film & debate with special guests
'A Crude Awakening is an informative and unashamedly apocalyptic documentary about the world's obsession with oil that makes An Inconvenient Truth look positively chipper.' The Times
Website: A Crude Awakening
Website: Reviews on Rotten Tomatoes
An Alternative Guide to Our World
15:00 - 16:30 £5.00
A showcase of geographical shorts
A wide range of short films that exploit geographical thinking including In Passing, a film about the psychogeography of a blind woman's experiences of Manchester and entries from 'The Secret Geographer' competition on 'the Geography of...'
This stuff adds up to a huge cost. Every year, there is the latest 'must have' gadget
Thanks to Helen Nurton from SLN Forum for telling me about the STORY OF STUFF, which is the latest product of Free Range Studios (you may know them from such interactive web based resources as 'The Meatrix' and 'Store Wars'...)
The resource is immediately engaging (it was to me anyway, but then I'm easily pleased...) and follows the cycle from EXTRACTION to DISPOSAL before suggesting an alternative way.
Download the ANNOTATED script for loads of weblinks.
An excellent piece of work.
Saturday, December 1, 2007
This Picture from the album "City of Sin"
Let's play word association...
Try to avoid the following images: lifts smelling of urine, fear of crime, Ronan Point, concrete, demolition, windows, nowhere to play...
Why has this image developed ? 'Is' this the image you had ?
The development company URBAN SPLASH has some intriguing web resources.
Several of their developments would be a useful counterpoint to the more negative images that people might have...
I used to live in Huddersfield, and just up from the road in Newsome where I lived was an old textile mill with a huge chimney which was sat empty, but would perhaps now have been redeveloped.
PARK HILL FLATS, Sheffield
Park Hill flats are an image I have seen regularly for the whole of my life: squatting on the hills on the approach to Sheffield. Have spent some time wandering and driving through them at intervals over the past few decades.
"Streets in the sky..." was the original plan.
This extract from an OPEN UNIVERSITY course document gives a good description of the plans (you can download this as a word file)
Each apartment had a front door which looked out onto a twelve-feet wide access deck ('street'), which ran from one side of the scheme to the other. Bridges carried the street through the entire scheme, allowing milk floats to trundle from door to door.
Jack Lynn was worried that the lobby space in other Modernist estates tended to become a no-man's land, serving neither public needs nor offering privacy to residents, and it was hoped that the 'streets' would solve this problem. He remarked enthusiastically on the different colours of linoleum at each doorstep as proof that residents' individuality was not being smothered by gargantuan surroundings.
But Park Hill's problems quickly became apparent. The streets allowed some of the worst aspects of urban life to remain (muggers found they made convenient getaway routes), whilst failing to preserve the better aspects.
They were never really streets in the real sense. Although the architects had included shops, a school, and a pub in order to create a distinctive community within the estate, the access decks were really just long walkways with none of the vibrancy, diversity, and organic feel of a city street which has grown and changed over decades or even centuries.
In the Unité d'Habitation in Marseilles, Le Corbusier had enclosed his streets within the building: in Sheffield they were left open on one side, and exposed to the less clement Yorkshire climate.
The idea was that the milkfloat would float along the streets
Read the text in the Urban Splash brochure to get a nice feeling for the importance of Park Hill flats.
Sheffield didn't just have Park Hill. There was also Kelvin Flats and Hyde Park Flats.
One of the best examples of a web resource which has the potential to be developed into the classroom is the website of Peter Jones, who lived in these flats.
His website, called 'STREETS IN THE SKY' is one that you must visit.
His story, which features his atmospheric photography and skilful line drawings can be viewed a the PARK HILL FLATS site. There are some rude words if that sort of thing offends you, but this is an absorbing read ! It has a lot of embedded geography.
Check out the WIKIPEDIA page, which suggests that Park Hill Flats are Europe's largest listed building...
Also check LEE GARLAND's photography page.
Plus FLICKR user Russel_photog's SET.
Urban Splash are now redeveloping PARK HILL. You can download the brochure I mentioned above (PDF download)
THE 3 TOWERS, Manchester
A great little site with sound effects and chunky music too has been produced by URBAN SPLASH.
LISTER MILLS, Bradford
Another of Urban Splash's projects.
Also don't forget the classic Geography Programme about Glasgow which features Basil Spence's designs, and the couple who live in them...
Noel Jenkins famously used audio powerpoint annotation to attach small WAV files to a powerpoint image of high rise buildings.
There are plenty of HIGH RISE and TOWER BLOCK resources on the web.
The site TOWERBLOCKS: covers the Sustainable Towerblocks initiative.
Also the PHOTO GALLERY here.
I think this idea has a lot of legs, and will be developing a unit on this for my new KS3 SoW, and adapting it for use with the new GCSE and also KS5 specifications.
Rebranding Places springs to mind...
Keep an eye out for something on this at the GA Conference... Potentially...
To be continued...
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
What other changes are happening to what were previously embedded cultural occasions in the week ?
Saturday, November 10, 2007
Sunday, October 28, 2007
People around the world recognise the characters and the music.
Just back from Disneyland Paris, where I took hundreds of images of the place. Going to work this up into a Cultural Geographical unit at some point...
In the meantime, "here are a few of my favourite things..." (I mean, images...)
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Monday, October 15, 2007
So what impressions of Bournemouth do you get from the card ?
What sort of place is it ?
What sort of attractions does it have ?
Is it a lively go-ahead sort of place ?
Would you want to go there ?
Now think about fast food...
Here is the brand... The Big Mac - pictures taken from THIS GREAT BLOG.
and then here is the 'reality' : a Big Mac purchased from a McDonalds store and photographed. Check the website for even more examples...
Of course, this is real food... (Pic by Flickr user BOJ photos...)
Has to be haddock - never mind the pollocks...
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Alex and Neil. I think Peart's drumming that night was the best ever - powerful and faultless...
Geddy with his lyric prompts and Taurus pedals...
Monday, October 8, 2007
Sunday, October 7, 2007
Up to Sheffield at the weekend and popped into Meadowhall, which was hit by the great storms of June 25th 2007. The lower layers are still being renovated after the flood. The "Land of Shoppertunity". Popped into the Oasis for some rather nice Harry Ramsdens. Cheap 'Fragile Earth' book in Smiths, and a book "The Great Flood" by Martin Smith.
Then it was to Hallam FM Arena to see Canadian band "Rush" on their Snakes and Arrows tour. The area around the Arena was also affected by the flooding. Superb concert. I had a great seat, good sound and great set list and effects - highpoints were 'Subdivisions', 'Natural Science', 'Dreamline', 'Hope', 'YYZ' and 'The Main Monkey Business'...
Thursday, October 4, 2007
The ice cream is banana flavour, with butter rum swirls and gummi bears... and is NOT available in shops...
Last night, I went to The Junction in Cambridge to see a band that no-one I speak to has ever heard of, but who have provided me with years of entertainment. On the way, saw my first garage with diesel at 101.9p per litre...
The band are called "The Decemberists", and are from Oregon in the USA.
There were quite a few people with digital cameras in the audience, and I figured that some of those might be Flickr users. Checked today, and discovered the photos of Flickr user Carbon Monoxide. Here are a couple of shots of what was a superb concert (apart from the usual people in the crowd who decide to have a shouted conversation rather than listen to the band...) - Colin Meloy, who was fantastic - great vocals and audience banter...
Jenny Conlee - great organ playing and other instrumentation and was "well into it "Nate Query - bassist...
Not pictured: Chris Funk and John Moen...
The band are also MOBLOGGING their tour apparently, but there's not a lot there to be honest...
Any other Decemberist loving Geographers out there ?
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
This was the Here and Now UK board, and was the result of voting across the country...
Liverpool fills the Old Kent Road slot...
Dundee makes it...Here's the board for your interest - why not buy a copy ! Look at the price inflation in the properties...
Here are 1000 suggestions for a motto for Britain...
Monday, September 24, 2007
There are a few decent programmes on the telly. 'The IT Crowd' and 'QI' are on at the same time on Friday.
This week's QI introduced me to an interesting fact about the history of Las Vegas.
I use Las Vegas with my Year 13 geographers (hi gang !) as an example of a post-industrial city. It has an interesting history, which is explored in some exam materials from 2005 that I use.
THIS WEBSITE is rather great...
It has a useful tour of the city of Las Vegas, and has a cool FLASH map.
Here is a postcard from Flickr user kocojim which shows that people sent postcards from the city as "Atomic tourists"This is an interesting variation on tourism.
There is an ATOMIC TOURISM website for people interested in seeing the sites...
Las Vegas has an atomic testing MUSEUM.
Of course a few decades later were the "downwinders" - see this Wikipedia article for starters..
One of the more famous (alleged) casualties of testing in Utah was John Wayne.
He was famous for classic John Ford westerns, including "The Seekers" - filmed in Monument Valley (cue nice butte joke!) and 'True Grit'...
To finish another WIKIPEDIA article: on Nuclear weapons in Popular Cultcha...
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Geography and Blogging
A new resources has just appeared on the Geographical Association website.
It's a new online journal called GeogEd.
The first item is an article by Phil Wood called Advances in E-Learning: The Case of Blogging in School Geography.
This looks at blogging in geography, and name-checks the article I wrote for Teaching Geography in 2004, and then mentions some current Geog Blogs, though sadly not the 'original' GeoBlogs...
Fame (ish) at last...
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Dug out an old Boots “Page a Day” diary from 1975: black hardback cover…
On July 29th, I saw the Queen from out of my Nanan’s window in Herringthorpe,
Did a lot of cycling at the time, and also played or watched a lot of bowls.
Also went to the local swimming baths on
Read that the
Faulty boilers, defective lighting, leaking drainage, poor standards of changing room accommodation were also identified during the inspection.
A council report has concluded that the baths is beyond economic repair, and its deterioration has been so marked that there are "significant health and safety problems."
It was closed on Monday.
Rotherham Council has also revealed that another of the town's pools could soon close. An inspection found that urgent work is required to electrical wiring at the pool at Herringthorpe Leisure Centre, after which a decision will be made about its future.
It is estimated that it will cost more than £1m to carry out all the repairs required at both of the swimming pools.”
Also discovered I had 50p per week spending money…
Went to see the classic film “The Land that Time Forgot” with Doug McClure, and also bought “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”. Also did play scheme at local school, and went to the local park – actually, reading this now it was obvious that my parents were desperately trying to keep me and my brother and sister entertained. There was a fairly crappy amusement place and some sort of zoo (?) in
Went to Castle Donington (now
We also tended to go out at the weekend for a ‘drive’, which usually ended up with a drink at a pub. We had a lime and lemonade and a packet of crisps. We also had ‘clubs’ which met up at the clubhouse: our shed… Some of them were for boys, some were for girls…
A popular trip was to Bakewell and Chatsworth House gardens. We always bought the Original Bakewell Puddings, and we knew our way around
We also used to go to the mobile library on Wednesdays in a local pub car park. The area has changed beyond recognition now, as has the pub.
Read a lot of Arthur Ransome books, and also ‘Lord of the Rings’.
There was a big playing field near our house and used to play a lot of football and climb trees – I fell out of one of them and broke my arm earlier that year.
TV of the time...
Laurel and Hardy
Match of the Day
The Record Breakers
Josie and the Pussycats
On the Ball
I was also getting ready to go up to Secondary school – had to spend 35p on a badge for my school blazer.
The past is indeed another country…
Friday, August 24, 2007
They has produced a series of excellent postcards which feature a range of images of locations around the country and abroad. There's a good link to geography in that they offer an 'alternative' view of familiar places.
I will reproduce one card below for representational purposes only, but would encourage you to visit the GALLERIES page - there are loads of images: SELECT ONE FROM THE DROP DOWN BOX...
They ask their visitors to answer some questions, and the SURVEYS are interesting.
Led me to this site: I'M NOT A TOURIST I LIVE HERE....
Click on the CARAVAN GALLERY link from the ARTISTS page and you can see some great images which are great for the PILOT GCSE Geography unit on MY PLACE as well as CULTURAL GEOGRAPHY on 'Britishness'.
How about taking your own pictures and we can create our own POSTCARDS or ANIMOTOs
Also, for those of you using BLOGGER, you may not have noticed that there's now a VIDEO UPLOAD button - upload a video up to 100Mb in size...
May try it later...
This has been an excellent series in the last week: 3 x 1 hour episodes which were each fascinating in their own right. The third episode lost its way a little (if you'll excuse the pun)
Lots of Cultural Geography too of course...
Motorways led to a change in the way that we took our holidays, especially after the Beeching Axe. Has also led to the rise in suburbanisation and the rise of commuting. Rural labouring poor fled the countryside and the middle classes moved in.
I liked this movie a lot: "Buying an ice cream on the M25"
And here is Harry Enfield... (warning, contains the word "bloody...")
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Just watching an episode on UKTV Gold (waiting for the Simpsons to start - more on those later in the year !), and Godber, Fletch's cellmate is just about to be released, and he apparently has
"his one 'O' Level in Geography"
Fletch says "Geography ? I bet he'll get lost as soon as he gets outside the prison gates he will..."
This is featured in the Satuday "Independent".
A collection of the columns is due to be published in October, and can be preordered from AMAZON. Great Ralph Steadman cartoons too...
They're making quite good progress as you can see from THE BLOG, and there was also an article on the project in THE OBSERVER.
Since the students doing the Pilot GCSE are teenagers (yes, that means you...) they will have particular cultural interests at the moment which they won't necessarily feel the same way about in 10 or 20 years time (though they may feel nostalgic about them, and I still listen to some of the same music - I ditched the combat jacket though...)
Choose some 'objects' under the following headings (some or all of them...)I decided to have a go, and came up with my own from the mid 70s-early 80s...
and finally, here are my wife's memories of teenage years...
We will be doing this as an activity later in the year...
Start thinking now...
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Friday, August 17, 2007
I'd like you to answer these questions.
a) When were you a teenager ? (give the years)
b) Choose one 'cultural object' from the following list of headings which defined your teenage years the most: (you don't need to give reasons, but be prepared to be able to if challenged...)
Food and Drink
For each one name the country of origin of the 'object'
c) How different are yours from Tony's (or similar to them)
d) Do they tell us anything about the countries shaping culture in that period ? Why might this be?
I'll post mine later tonight if I get the chance (tomorrow if not) for comparison.