Passport to the world

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By Jane Boweradvisor in art, drama, dance and literacy

Jane is available to work in schools. For a brochure email jane-bower@ntlworld.com

Travel the globe to bring countries and cultures to life in the classroom

Atlas

This unit allows you to take an alternative approach to studying one particular country. It provides children with the opportunity to discover other countries and their cultures – delving into their history and exploring what’s on offer.

Geography is at the heart of the unit. But, as the activities on the following pages show, you can take a crosscurricular approach to incorporate maths, art, literacy and history to gain a deeper insight into travel and countries around the world.

Introduce the topic and prepare the children’s thinking by carrying out the introductory activity ideas first, then proceed with the ageappropriate activities listed under curriculum areas.

INTRODUCTORY ACTIVITIES Ages 7-11

1. Travel

Working in pairs, groups, or as a class, ask the children to list as many reasons as possible for travelling to another country. Older and more able children can subdivide the main reasons (holiday, celebration, health, business, research, and so on) into more specific reasons. For example, honeymoon, golden wedding anniversary, retirement, voluntary work for charity, gap year, making a documentary, sent by the army, pursuing a hobby, going for cheaper dentistry. Children will probably be able to add reasons from their own experience, too. Pool the ideas and display the list.

2. Maps and globes

The more children become acquainted with maps and globes, the greater their grasp of distance, direction and location will become. Place the class into groups. Ask each group to choose a country – perhaps somewhere they have already been or somewhere they would like to go. Give each group a world map and assign their chosen country a number. (Each group will need to have a list of all the countries chosen, as well as their numbers.) Set the group challenges, such as:

  • Which two of your countries are the greatest distance apart?
  • In what direction is country one from country three?
  • Which number countries are in the northern hemisphere?
  • If you were to travel to all your countries, which would be the shortest route to take?
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