Sunday, August 28, 2016

What do you think?



Image above: Cultural differences.


Related sites to Humsteach blog
Spatialworlds
Australian Curriculum Portal
Geogaction
DECD Learning Resources for Australian Curriculum
DECD Achievement Standards Charts 
Australian Geography Teachers' Association website

Geography Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of Australia

Scoop.it 




* Course details on FLO 


You think what?

"A curriculum is not value-free, as values and attitudes cannot be divorced from content."

The Shape of the Australian Curriculum: Geography January 2011

HASS subjects and their teaching is not value free. It is almost impossible not to be political in some way when discussing HASS topics.

As Robert Butler was quoted as saying in the Economist in 2010:

“It is getting harder and harder in conversation to raise one or other of the most basic subjects in geography—agriculture, glaciation, rivers and population—without a flicker of panic crossing the other person’s face. You are no longer talking about a neutral subject.”


HASS has the potential to be relevant, dynamic and challenging for students in the classroom through providing the opportunity to develop a political frame around what is taught. How can we teach about water, population, migration and climate change for example without challenging students to place the discussion in a political context – that is, what do you believe is right and what are the justice and ethical beliefs that guide ones opinion on an issue.



Here are two excellent classroom polling tools to have a look at and use to get discussion started.


* Straw Poll

What are your responses to the following following questions re: HASS 



  • Click on the URL's below and select your response.  

What subject of HASS do you like best?
http://strawpoll.me/6943450

Did you like Society and Environment at school?
https://strawpoll.me/6943458

Are you looking forward to teaching HASS?
http://strawpoll.me/6943465

Do you enjoy discussing issues?


* Poll everywhere

A digital tool that is a wonderful way to get students involved (all students, not just the vocal and uninhibited) in discussion of a contestable nature is Poll Everywhere. The brilliant aspect of this program is that it is easy to use, is anonymous and inclusive of all, can be used and developed in real time in the classroom and provides instant feedback (graphs, word walls etc). The program gives all students a voice so that they can express their opinion without ridicule or embarrassment. The resulting graphs and graphics provide data for class research and discussion and can be archived for comparison over time presentations. As a tool it is a great interactive way to involve the geography class in some high order thinking and discussion. 
The brief video on the Poll Everywhere Home page gives an introduction to this free digital tool which can be used not only in the geography classroom but also with teachers in their professional learning in geography. Here is a Poll Everywhere document I recently used with a group of teachers working on the concepts in history and geography. All they had to do was type the URL http://www.pollev.com and start submitting their response to the questions in the document by using the codes (each code is unique and can be used only once specifically for the question - called a poll) generated by the teacher/facilitator of the question. Poll Everywhere is a great way to get discussion started in any gathering.  It is certainly worth the 30 minutes to get acquainted with the tool and make the learning more interactive for participants and create some inclusive and comprehensive data for contestable discussions.



PollEverywhere responses

Go to PollEv.com/mal2013

or Text MAL2013 to +61 429 883 481


Why do we study HASS?


Can you list some HASS issues?

Is there any one issue that really interests/enthuses you?

Do you have any concerns about this class and how you may proceed/succeed?

Do you have any questions re: HASS before we continue?



TodaysMeet



Check this tool out and think about how you could use it in the classrtoom and
how we could use it in our tutorial. If you have already used it, be prepated to share yot thoughts.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Things are a changing!


Related sites to Humsteach blog
Spatialworlds
Australian Curriculum Portal
Geogaction
DECD Learning Resources for Australian Curriculum
DECD Achievement Standards Charts 
Australian Geography Teachers' Association website

Geography Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of Australia

Scoop.it 




* The PowerPoint for the first tutorial on week beginning 22 March 2016

* Course details on FLO 


This posting explores the issue of where students as learners have changed. Is there such a thing as a 21st Century learner? The research indicates that there is! If we are on about developing a 21st Century curriculum then we must take into account that the learner has changed and think about how the curriculum may be different to accommodate these changes.

These changes may be categorised under the headings of what they require and expect and what they are interested in.

*They require and expect: 
• not to have to learn “by rote” knowledge. 
• They recognize that knowledge is important but not to be expected to learn chunks of deep knowledge
• respect from their teachers. They consider respect needs to be ‘earnt’ by their teachers
• to learn the skills of knowledge acquisition, analysis and synthesis
• to develop a taste of the ethos and frameworks of disciplines.
• relevance of learning to their life. They ask how the curriculum delivered will prepare them for the real world whilst they are at school and when they leave. They expect real world competencies through their learning
• the freedom to personalise/customise their learning/tasks to meet their personal needs
• their learning to be flexible, self reliant and autonomous
• new technologies to be available to support their learning and collaborative work
• to work collaboratively in the real and virtual space
• be able to meet achievement standards if they work as required
• the opportunity to study in depth a topic/issue they find of interest
• connectivity with their life and their learning experiences.

* They are interested in:
• issues of social justice
• real stories
• connecting with others in the real and virtual space
• using current technology to learn – in particular to enhance connectivity
• being active citizens and make a difference
• embracing cross-cultural competencies – sensitivity to other cultures
• greenness and sustainability through real ecologically responsible acts
• being global in outlook – citizens of the world
• customising their education to their needs – personal pathways
• being a resourceful learner, curious, enquiring, community relevant and learning
beyond the school day.

Talking about HASS?



Related sites to Humsteach blog
Spatialworlds
Australian Curriculum Portal
Geogaction
DECD Learning Resources for Australian Curriculum
Australian Geography Teachers' Association website

Geography Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of Australia

Scoop.it 




* The PowerPoint for the first tutorial on week beginning 22 March 2016

* Course details on FLO


Welcome to the HASS Middle Years course and I am thrilled that you will be having the opportunity to think HASS over the next few months with me. I look forward to work with you on HASS in the curriculum.


I obviously see that HASS is an incredibly important part of the curriculum and I thought you may be interested in this blog I recently posted - it makes an argument for the importance of the humanities in the curriculum

What do you think? Be prepared to discuss!


THE THREAT OF FOCUSSING ON UTILITARIAN EDUCATION

With today’s global competition, there is increasing concern about the nature and quality of education– should it be primarily practical and utilitarian and equipping students to be competitive in the workforce or should it rather a liberal education with broad ideas and values to prepare a well-rounded student with the capacity to be fully functional democratic citizens, prepared for life in contemporary society? For students to be successful in today’s global economy, it should be seen that utilitarian and liberal education need to be tightly coupled, and that students’ academic, developmental, interpersonal and experiential lives are entwined. Schools should move towards developing transformational learning for students and not just focus on providing knowledge and understandings based on employability. Such questioning of the utilitarian trend in education around the world is critical when we consider the decrease in curriculum time for humanities in schools and the significant drop off in the number of students studying geography in particular in the senior school in Australia and around the world.

Transformational learning means that the “whole student” has to develop so as to prepare him or her as a thinker and citizen for a challenging world; to question and affirm or change what she or he believes; and come to a greater understanding of the complex questions of his or her own life and the lives of others than they otherwise would. By attending to both leads to transformational learning and the development of the whole person into a flourishing individual and citizen.”

Traditionally in our school system the humanities’ (history, geography, studies of society etc) have developed those capacities referred to as liberal education. Ironically, it was the liberal subjects that dominated early education! In the present economic and educational environment the humanities in the senior school are being devalued and squeezed out of the curriculum in face of utilitarian demands. In Australia the humanities is declining in schools in terms of numbers, prestige and general influence. Many young people now leave school with a scant knowledge of history, geography and our society in general (law, government etc). The impact is particularly serious in the senior secondary year that provides a sophisticated understanding of the humanities for young people. The utilitarian demands on a young person when choosing subjects has resulted in significant reduction of the perceived ‘non employment direct’ subjects such as history, geography etc (in fact these subjects do have significant and much needed career pathways but often not seen as direct and thus not promoted as getting a student a job). As this blog has highlighted and discussed over the past 4 years, the opportunities in the spatial industry is enormous and subjects such as geography and history have an important role to play in developing student knowledge, skills and capacities in-line with the needs of that industry.

Australians hold what appear to be conflicting aspirational and practical notions of the purposes and value of a schooling. Economists and corporate leaders refer to this function of education as the development of human capital.
“…education is more than preparing for a job; it should be for acquiring the knowledge, skills, competencies, values, dispositions and capacities for many life roles in a world of inevitable change and that this is ultimately the more “practical” preparation for life.”
Anecdotally the trend away from the liberal humanities in school education, towards the demands of a utilitarian education, in particular in senior secondary, is common throughout the western world and similar OECD countries to Australia. There is a need to get quantitative and substantiated data on the trend away from the humanities and to research what other countries are doing to arrest the trend away from the humanities as highly respected (in number and prestige) subjects in schools. Those involved in humanities education consider that the trend away from the humanities towards utilitarian education in our schools (and universities) is undermining and threatening the development of a ‘well-rounded, thinking, socially analytical young citizen ready for the demands of the 21st Century globalised world.
Here are two really interesting articles from the UK re: importance of geography and diminishing numbers. Seems that the drift to utilitarian education is happening everywhere. Geographers need to be strategic and work towards reversing this trend.

1. "Without geography, the world would be a mystery to us"
Geography is the subject that contributes more than any other to young people’s knowledge of the world, writes David Lambert.

2. "History and geography 'diminishing' in schools", says head
Subjects such as English, history and geography are being marginalised as schools ditch academic rigour in favour of “accessibility”, according to a leading headmistress.

The irony is that geography and the associated spatial technology tools it uses are seen as a non-vocational area of study and just a nice subject to do for those interested. As this blog repeatedly highlights, geography is a great humanities subject for young people to do as citizens now and in the future but it also is a subject with increasing vocational opportunities in the branches of geography (climatology, economic analysis, planning, environmental management, disaster mitigation etc etc) and the related areas of the spatial industry which continues to say that they have a human resources shortage. Geography is also a subject which goes somewhere in the world of employment. There is a lot of work to be done with subject counselors, vocational consultants, parents and the community to get the message across that geography and all the knowledge, skills and capacities it develops in young people is and should be promoted as a learning area with great (and increasing) vocational opportunity.






How does a Humanities education help us to make sense of these two images?

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

HASS at Moana Primary School


                            Image above: The diversity of the subject content of HASS

Related sites to the Humsteach blog 
Spatialworlds
GeogSpace
AC History Units
Geogaction
DECD Learning Resources for Australian Curriculum
DECD Achievement Standards Charts 
Australian Geography Teachers' Association website

Geography Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of Australia
Legal Education Teachers Association SA (LETASA)
Business Educators Australia

Email contact:
malcolm.mcinerney@sa.gov.au


The presentation from the workshop (click on links to visit showcased sites).


* The Australian Curriculum Portal



A selection of HASS resources and links

 Being a Citizen: a resource developed by AGTA


 South Australian Parliament teaching resources




 * DECD Australian Curriculum Implementation guidelines

Discovering Democracy resources 

* Parliamentary Education Office resources



AC History Units: the resource from HTAA and Education Services Australia (ESA) to support the Australian Curriculum: History


* Para Hills Primary School Economics and Business Weebly


* Para Hills Primary School Civics and Citizenship Weebly


* DECD Australian Curriculum: HASS resources 

The DECD "Making the Australian Curriculum work for us' resource has been designed  to support the teaching and learning of the Australian Curriculum: HASS.

As you can see below the resource to date includes a creative animation, broadsheets on the curriculum, sound bites and 'talking heads'.

The Story of the learning areas animation. An excellent animation on 'What is Geography for'



The geography curriculum, year by year, all on one page in the Learning Area Explorer.




The RSLSA Virtual War Memorial

A great resource for commemoration activities, historical research and work on Australian identity in the Civics and Citizenship curriculum.



Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Thinking and Connecting HaSS


Image above: The HASS concept wheels.




Thinking and Connecting HaSS presentation


Related sites to the Humsteach blog 
Spatialworlds
GeogSpace
AC History Units
Geogaction
DECD Learning Resources for Australian Curriculum
DECD Achievement Standards Charts 
Australian Geography Teachers' Association website

Geography Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of Australia
Legal Education Teachers Association SA (LETASA)
Business Educators Australia

Email contact:
malcolm.mcinerney@sa.gov.au


* The Australian Curriculum Portal



A selection of HASS resources and links

 Being a Citizen: a resource developed by AGTA


 South Australian Parliament teaching resources




 * DECD Australian Curriculum Implementation guidelines

Discovering Democracy resources 

* Parliamentary Education Office resources



AC History Units: the resource from HTAA and Education Services Australia (ESA) to support the Australian Curriculum: History



* DECD Australian Curriculum: HASS resources 

The DECD "Making the Australian Curriculum work for us' resource has been designed  to support the teaching and learning of the Australian Curriculum: HASS.

As you can see below the resource to date includes a creative animation, broadsheets on the curriculum, sound bites and 'talking heads'.

The Story of the learning areas animation. An excellent animation on 'What is Geography for'



The geography curriculum, year by year, all on one page in the Learning Area Explorer.




Achievement Standards Chart and activities for HASS from DECD 


 Assessment activities are at:
http://www.decd.sa.gov.au/assessment/default.asp?navgrp=Leader


The RSLSA Virtual War Memorial

A great resource for commemoration activities, historical research and work on Australian identity in the Civics and Citizenship curriculum.



Sunday, April 17, 2016

Civics and Citizenship Forum: April 2016

Image above: The important concepts for the Australian Curriculum: Civics and Citizenship


Related sites to Humsteach blog 
Spatialworlds
Australian Curriculum Portal
GeogSpace
AC History Units
Geogaction
DECD Learning Resources for Australian Curriculum
DECD Achievement Standards Charts 
Australian Geography Teachers' Association website

Geography Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of South Australia
History Teachers Association of Australia
Legal Education Teachers Association SA (LETASA)
Business Educators Australia

Email contact:
malcolm.mcinerney@sa.gov.au

* September 2015 Civics and Citizenship Forum PowerPoint presentation




Relevant resources and links

* Australian Curriculum: Civics and Citizenship  on the Australian Curriculum Portal















 * Being a Citizen: a resource developed by AGTA


 South Australian Parliament teaching resources



* South Australian Virtual War Memorial

 * DECD Australian Curriculum Implementation guidelines

* July and September Civics and Citizenship Forum in the city

Discovering Democracy resources 

* Parliamentary Education Office resources


DECD has recently launched their "Making the Australian Curriculum work for us' resource to support the teaching and learning of the Australian Curriculum: HASS.
As you can see below the resource to date includes a creative animation, broadsheets on the curriculum and 'talking heads'.


Achievement Standards Chart and activities for HASS from DECD 

The Civics and Citizenship Achievement Standards chart is at:  http://www.decd.sa.gov.au/assessment/files/links/acchart_civicscitizenship.pdf



 Assessment activities are at:
http://www.decd.sa.gov.au/assessment/default.asp?navgrp=Leader


The RSLSA Virtual War Memorial

A great resource for commemoration activities, historical research and work on Australian identity in the Civics and Citizenship curriculum.


The South Australian Suffragettes site

A great South Australian history site focussed on the work of the suffragettes in South Australia.