Just spent five hours trying to get my thoughts down and activities prepared to use with the recent Hans Rosling BBC2 documentary. It is very much something that I have been interested in for a long while and can't help but feel that we are being prescribed case studies, situations and data that really doesn't represent our world in 2013. There were some really positive things highlighted in the programme but some major issues too that weren't covered such as future oil use and energy sources linked to massive increases in future car use in those economies who are fast catching up.
I really loved the approach to the graphics and the good old fashioned ladder to illustrate the perspective that we have of other places based on the information that we are fed. I do think that textbooks in Geography should take some responsibility for this and in their clamour to become exam board approved (they too should not be exonerated with their constant MEDC LEDC comparison LEDC's should learn how to do it better, be sustainable etc etc) they use old and out of date data, maps and charts that are far from a true reflection on those countries now. It worries me that they will be doing the same for the new curriculum and qualifications too. The stuff that Hans Rosling talked about will make me go back though geographypods and question, update and delete resources that are now proved to be out of date or just plain misleading. IB gives us greater scope to do exactly as Hans Rosling said - question data and focus on good news and positive developments. The iGCSE also does the same and does not have the same focus on MEDC v LEDC but thinking back to OCR B and AQA A that I previously taught, this really was the core of the course and something that I felt very uncomfortable with. Let's hope that people from the exam boards were watching and that the RGS & GA also noted it down. Moreover there is now an army of Geography teachers (judging by the excitement on Twitter last Thursday) who are going to be able to update their resources and change the way that population & development is taught. The start of a new chapter I hope.
Anyway, enough ranting and better start doing........
Work is here: http://www.geographypods.com/dont-panic---the-truth-about-population.html
Author of geographypods.com.