It’s so often stated that geography education is so much more than just learning states and capitals. I wholeheartedly endorse that sentiment, but there is still some rudimentary importance to learning about where places are. I see it as analogous for English majors needing to learn basic grammar. You can’t write a masterpiece if you are still fumbling around with the alphabet. In geography, we can't have a nuanced discussion of place and interconnectedness if we have no sense of where any place actually is.
TED Talks Map designer Aris Venetikidis is fascinated by the maps we draw in our minds as we move around a city -- less like street maps, more like schematics or wiring diagrams, abstract images of relationships between places.
This video touches on numerous themes that are crucial to geographers including: 1) how our minds arrange spatial information, 2) how to best graphically represent spatial information in a useful manner for your audience and 3) how mapping a place can be the impetus for changing outdated systems. This is the story of how a cartographer working to improve a local transportation system map, which in turn, started city projects to improve the infrastructure and public utilities in Dublin, Ireland. This cartographer argues that the best map design for a transport system needs to conform to how on cognitive mental mapping works more so than geographic accuracy (like so many subway maps do).
TED Talks For the past two years, photographer Lisa Kristine has traveled the world, documenting the unbearably harsh realities of modern-day slavery.
This is a chilling glimpse into the worst and darkest side of the economic systems of geography and labor in the world. It is estimated that there are more than 25 million people who today live in state that can be described as modern-day slavery. We should not discuss slavery only in the past tense, and yet it conflicts with how most people conceptualize the world today.
Questions to Ponder: How can this even be happening in the 21st century? What geographic and economic forces lead to these situations portrayed in this TED talk? What realistically could be done to lessen the amount of slavery in the world today?
Tags: TED, labor, economic, class, poverty, South Asia, Africa, video.
Not only will you learn about hurricanes but you can also watch videos about lighting, tornadoes, volcanoes, and overall everything about the weather. These are great videos to use in class when teaching units about natural disasters. These videos are full of great engaging facts.
TED Talks HIV is a serious problem in the DR Congo, and aid agencies have flooded the country with free and cheap condoms. But few people are using them. Why?
This video highlights why some well-intending NGOs with excellent plans for the developing world don't have the impact they are hoping for. Cultural barriers to diffusion abound and finding a way to make your idea resonate with your target audience takes some preparation. This also addresses some important demographic and health-related issues, so the clip could be used in a variety of places within the curriculum. FYI: this clip briefly shows some steamy condom ads.
TED Talks Every day, we use materials from the earth without thinking, for free. But what if we had to pay for their true value: would it make us more careful about what we use and what we waste?
Companies derive economic value from the environment without paying the true environmental costs of their enterprises. Sukhdev call this the 'Economic Invisibilty of Nature.' Many countries are mortgaging their environment's future for economic growth today. This also disproportionately impacts the developing world and rural people more adversely. Key to his argument is that we need to identify negative externalities on the environment that produce private profits and acknowledge them as public losses.
Americans ate 475 million pounds of tilapia last year, making this once obscure African native the most popular farmed fish in the United States.
Industrial farming, human-introduced species, GMOs, outsourcing and environmental impacts are but some of the relevant themes from this video. How are global taste buds reshaping the geographic landscape?
If you haven't yet discovered http://www.plaidavenger.com/ I recommend exploring it (numerous World Regional resources). You'll find its brand of geography has a whole lot of personality; you'll decide soon enough whether that personality works for your classroom. This particular 'plaidcast' discussion focuses on political geography, the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ), and the strategic importance of overseas exclaves using the Spratly Island example in the South China Sea.
Minor correction to video: Territorial waters only extend 12 miles offshore, not the 200 miles of the exclusive economic zone.
This is the story of a halal slaughterhouse in Queens. It is a bit graphic at times, but the culture, history and passion behind the business is fascinating.
While a bit gruesome in moments, this video is an excellent view into the inner workings of an ethnic neighborhood. Why are the cultural connections to a 'homeland' so important to immigrants? Why is halal meat more expensive than what you would find in a grocery store? Why is food such an important part of culture? For more about this NY company and what halah is, see: http://madanihalal.com/ ;
"What was the greatest invention of the industrial revolution? Hans Rosling makes the case for the washing machine. With newly designed graphics from Gapminder, Rosling shows us the magic that pops up when economic growth and electricity turn a boring wash day into an intellectual day of reading."
The Gangnam Style! sensation is all over the internet, complete with parodies that both honor and mock the original. This first video is the original, which in a few short months received well ove...
The following link has the video, parodies and infographics to help student explore the meaning behind the cultural phenomenon.
Questions to Ponder: Considering the concept of cultural diffusion, what do we make of this phenomenon? What cultural combinations are seen in this? How has the technological innovations changed how cultures interact, spread and are replicated?
Tags: popular culture, video, diffusion, globalization, culture, place, technology, unit 3 culture.
TED Talks Western countries throw out nearly half of their food, not because it’s inedible -- but because it doesn’t look appealing. Tristram Stuart delves into the shocking data of wasted food, calling for a more responsible use of global resources.
No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies. It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem. Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust). This is an intriguing perpective on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions in a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates.
Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, TED, video, unit 5 agriculture.
TED Talks Why do transnational extremist organizations succeed where democratic movements have a harder time taking hold?
Globalization cut both ways. Maajid Nawaz discusses how social movements use ideas, narratives, symbols and leaders through borderless technologies, to create transnational identities. This has lead to highly sophisticated extremist organizations in Muslim-majority societies (and the speaker was a participant in that for 13 years). Isolated extremist are now globally connected. Given the Arab spring, how can these tools strengthen democratic social movements?
This is a poignant way to convey some of the gender issues that are present in the developing world. This is NOT a pick me up, and most classes would need some preparation before showing this video clip since it requires a high maturity level.
Visualisation of the density and function of the built-environment in Greater London 2010. Shows the dominance of the intensifying city-centre, corridors of commercial development and the smaller scale centres in Outer London.
This is a fantastic way to visually comprehend the spatial urban patterns and densities of a world city like London.
http://www.ted.com In James Howard Kunstler's view, public spaces should be inspired centers of civic life and the physical manifestation of the common good....
Kunstler impassionedly argues that American architecture and urban planning are not creating public places that encourage interaction and communal engagement. We should create more distinct places that foster a sense of place that is 'worth fighting for,' as opposed to suburbia which he sees as emblematic of these problems. How should we design cities to create a strong sense of place? What elements are necessary? Warning: He uses some strong language.
Partly just because I love this highly quotable movie with an incredible soundtrack, but this short clip can start be a good conversation starter. I'm hoping to use it when discussing relative location (or isolation) as well as the space-time compression. I ask my student how far away they live from campus and invariably they answer with a unit of time (even though distance was implied in the question). Why answer with time when discussing distance? What technologies are dependent on our temporal analysis of distance? How would our perception of distance change based on our access to transportation and communication technologies?
http://www.ted.com Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authen...
To gain a global perspective inherently requires understanding multiple perspectives. Africa is frequently portrayed as 'the other' but also homogenized within a single narrative that 'flattens' truth. How do we teach about other places that develop geographic empathy and show the many stories of places?
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