Synthesis a critical skill for ap human geography the 21 st century
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Synthesis: A Critical Skill for AP Human Geography & the 21 st Century. Jody Smothers Marcello Sitka High School, Sitka, Alaska AP Human geography reader National council for geographic education Editor, THE Geography teacher. WHY?. SYNTHESIS.

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Synthesis: A Critical Skill for AP Human Geography & the 21 st Century

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Synthesis a critical skill for ap human geography the 21 st century

Synthesis: A Critical Skill for AP Human Geography & the 21st Century

Jody Smothers Marcello

Sitka High School, Sitka, Alaska

AP Human geography reader

National council for geographic education

Editor, THE Geography teacher


Synthesis a critical skill for ap human geography the 21 st century

WHY?

SYNTHESIS


Howard gardner five minds

  • Synthesizing Mind: the ability to integrate ideas from different disciplines or spheres into a coherent whole & to communicate that integration to others.

Howard Gardner: Five Minds

Disciplinary Mind: the mastery of major schools of thought, includingscience, mathematics, & history, & of at least one professional craft.

Synthesizing Mind: the ability to integrate ideas from different disciplinesor spheres into a coherent whole & to communicate that integration to others.

Creating Mind: the capacity to uncover & clarify new problems, questions & phenomena.

Respectful Mind: awareness of & appreciation for differences amonghuman beings & human groups.

Ethical Mind: fulfillment of one‘s responsibilities as a worker & as a citizen.

(Speech at AP Annual Conference, Seattle, 2008)


Synthesizing discipline

Human geography: the study of the spatial organization of human activity and of people’s relationship with their environment (Knox & Marston)

Synthesizing Discipline

Human geography

Physical geography


21 st century

21st Century

Observe, synthesize, present data

Wide range of interdisciplinary studies in the 21st century

http://www.p21.org/documents/21stcskillsmap_geog.pdf


21 st century1

21st Century

Outcome: Frames, analyzes and synthesizes information in order to solve problems and answer questions

http://www.p21.org/documents/21stcskillsmap_geog.pdf


Geographic skills

  • Ask: Identifies substantial geographic issues & problems

  • Acquire: Systematically, accurately, & thoroughly locates & gathers geographic information from a variety of primary & secondary sources

  • Organize: Selects & designs elaborate and/or multiple forms of maps, graphs, diagrams, tables, & charts to organize geographic information

  • Analyze: Thoroughly & extensively uses complex processes of analysis, synthesis, evaluation & explanation to interpret geographic information from a variety of sources

  • Answer: Formulates valid, complex generalizations from the results of a full array of geographic inquiry methods

Geographic Skills

Ask geographic questions

Acquire geographic information

Organize geographic information

Analyze geographic information

Answer geographic questions


Synthesis a critical skill for ap human geography the 21 st century

WHY?

SYNTHESIS

IN

AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY


Any curriculum or course

  • Have I read the course outline?

    • Intended curriculum

  • Have I done the instruction?

    • Delivered curriculum

  • Have I given students the tools to be successful on the exam?

    • Assessed curriculum

Any Curriculum or Course

Three Enduring Questions

Aligned Curriculum


Ap human geography course outline intended curriculum

How to:

  • 1. use and think about maps and spatial data

  • 2. understand and interpret the implications of associations among phenomena in places

  • 3. recognize and interpret at different scales the relationships among patterns and processes

  • 4. define regions and evaluate the regionalization process

  • 5. characterize and analyze changing interconnections among places

AP Human Geography Course Outline (Intended Curriculum)

Key skills:

Maps & spatial data

Associations among phenomena

Patterns & processes

Regions

Changing interconnections


Ap human geography free response items assessed curriculum

The Exam: Section II: Free-Response

  • In the free-response section, you will be asked to write cogent answers to three constructed response questions. The questions may require you to interrelate different topical areas and to analyze and evaluate geographical concepts. Questions may be based on stimulus material such as verbal description, maps, graphs, photographs, and diagrams. You are expected to use your analytical and organizational skills to formulate answers in writing your essays.

  • The free-response section usually includes one question that tests a specific concept in geography and its application to real-world situations, one question that tests your ability to pull together and synthesize material from across the course, and one question that tests your depth of knowledge of a topic and gives you an opportunity to demonstrate your ability to apply and analyze geographic concepts across geographic contexts.

  • Remember to answer each question in the way it is structured. Points are allocated for sub-parts of the question and not for the overall answer. Your answer should be in essay form. Outlines and unlabeled diagrams and maps are not acceptable final answers. Learn to think outside of the box, and you will have the opportunity to demonstrate your understanding of key concepts in geography.

    http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/ap/humangeo/exam.html?humangeo

AP Human Geography Free Response Items (Assessed Curriculum)

From the AP Central Website:

Specific concept and its application to real-world situations

Ability to pull together and synthesize material from across the course

Depth of knowledge of a topic + ability to apply & analyze concepts across geographical contexts


Synthesis a critical skill for ap human geography the 21 st century

An example

Course Outline: Intended Curriculum

IV. Political Organization of Space . . . . …………………………….........13–17% A. Territorial dimensions of politics 1. The concept of territoriality 2. The nature and meaning of boundaries 3. Influences of boundaries on identity, interaction, and exchange 4. Federal and unitary states 5. Spatial relationships between political patterns and patterns of ethnicity, economy, and environment B. Evolution of the contemporary political pattern 1. The nation-state concept 2. Colonialism and imperialism 3. Democratization C. Changes and challenges to political–territorial arrangements 1. Changing nature of sovereignty 2. Fragmentation, unification, alliance 3. Supranationalism and devolution 4. Electoral geography, including gerrymandering 5. Terrorism


Past questions analysis

  • The modern state system is engaged in a struggle between the forces of supranationalism and devolution.

    • Define both terms and give an example of each.

    • With reference to the political and economic geography of Europe, briefly discuss three changes resulting from supranationalism.

    • With reference to the political and economic geography of Europe, briefly discuss three changes resulting from devolution.

Past Questions Analysis

2005 #1

modern state system

supranationalism

devolution

political geography

economic geography

Europe


Course outline assessment instruction

Course Outline = Assessment =Instruction?

Do we have alignment?

Instructional planning report as one tool

Multiple textbooks

Examine own teaching

Search for/create tools

Source: de Blij, Murphy, Fouberg, p. 238.


Past questions analysis1

  • The viability of any state depends on a balance between centripetal and centrifugal forces.

    • Define the concepts “centripetal force” and “centrifugal force.”

    • Give a specific example and explain a centripetal force that affects the viability of any state shown on the map above.

    • With reference to a different specific example, explain a centrifugal force that affects the viability of any state shown on the map above.

Past Questions Analysis

2006 #3

centripetal force

centrifugal force

state

region of South Asia (Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal)


Synthesis a critical skill for ap human geography the 21 st century

Centrifugal Forces

Centripetal Forces

Strong language, common cultural history

Strong polarizing, core area

Well-defined & uncontested boundaries (e.g. sea, mountain ranges); low population density in frontier areas

Different languages, strong minority groups

No central core area

Ambiguous boundaries; high population density in frontiers areas

Human Group

Short history of occupation

Long history of occupation

STATE

Territory

Source: Haggett, Peter. Geography: A Global Synthesis. Harlow, England: Prentice Hall, 2001. pp. 518-520.


Let s do an example

Let’s do an example

Start with partners

Build to groups of 6

Source: Knox and Marston


Stop and discuss

Stop and discuss

Human groups

State

territory

Whole Picture???

  • Synthesizing Mind: the ability to integrate ideas from different disciplinesor spheres into a coherent whole & to communicate that integration to others.


Assessment

  • Geographic Skills Scoring Guide

    • Opportunity to improve (Palmer Wolf)

    • Chance to revise (Darling Hammond)

    • Learning trend (Marzano)

Assessment

Scoring assessments: projects throughout the year

Offers the opportunity to synthesize information in each unit

Construct knowledge

Source: Knox and Marston


Assessment1

  • Free Response Items: 2010 #3

    • Demographic transition + population pyramids + economic development

Assessment

Scoring assessments: free response items

Can or did your students make the connections?

UK Geography

Source: Knox and Marston


Instruction

Instruction

Map Analysis

Refugee Assignment

Cultural Assignment

HDI or China Assignment

Black Gold

Geopolitical Diagram

Urban Questions: Canada/US (geo questions on DC as activity)

Rwanda review


Ap human geography course outline intended curriculum1

How to:

  • 1. use and think about maps and spatial data

  • 2. understand and interpret the implications of associations among phenomena in places

  • 3. recognize and interpret at different scales the relationships among patterns and processes

  • 4. define regions and evaluate the regionalization process

  • 5. characterize and analyze changing interconnections among places

AP Human Geography Course Outline (Intended Curriculum)

Key skills:

Maps & spatial data

Associations among phenomena

Patterns & processes

Regions

Changing interconnections


Synthesis a critical skill for ap human geography the 21 st century

How?

  • Free response questions early and often (Gillespie re: Fellman, Getis, and Getis ?s)

  • Free response questions that cut across units

  • Review not just by concepts or units but across concepts and units (Rwanda example)

  • Let students construct synthesis

  • Feedback (opportunity to improve, revise, learn)

How do we make the match among the intended, delivered, and assessed APHG curriculum & provide opportunities for synthesis?

Key skills:

Maps & spatial data

Associations among phenomena

Patterns & processes

Regions

Changing inter-connections

7 units:

Nature

Population

Culture

Political

Economic

Urban

Agriculture


Sources

Sources

College Board. AP Human Geography Course Outline and Website.

de Blij, H. J., Murphy, Alexander B., and Fouberg, Erin H. Human Geography: People, Place, and Culture. 8th edition. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2007.

Gardner, Howard. Presentation. AP Annual Conference, Seattle, July, 2008.

Geography and 21st Century Skills. Tuscon: Partnership for 21stCenutry Skills, May 2009. Accessed at: http://www.p21.org/documents/21stcskillsmap_geog.pdf.

Haggett, Peter. Geography: A Global Synthesis. Harlow, England: Prentice Hall, 2001.518-520.

Knox, Paul L. and Marston, Sallie A. Places and Regions in Global Context: Human Geography. 4th edition. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall, 2007.

Photos in presentation by Jody Smothers Marcello.

[email protected]


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