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Geography Education
Global news with a spatial perspective:  Interesting, current supplemental materials for geography teachers and students.
Curated by Seth Dixon
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The Great Mosque of Djenné

The Great Mosque of Djenné, Mali, is a magnet for tourists, but it is increasingly difficult for locals to live a normal life around it.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This New York Times short video is an intriguing glimpse into some of the cultural pressures behind having the designation of being an official world heritage site.  The great mosque combined with the traditional mud-brick feel to the whole city draws in tourists and is a source of communal pride, but many homeowners want to modernize and feel locked into traditional architecture by outside organizations that want them to preserve an 'authentic' cultural legacy.


Tags: Islam, tourism, place, religion, culture, historical, community, Mali, Africa.

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Baltimore's painted screens

"Jan Crawford explores a unique folk art tradition going back 100 years - once seen on nearly every row house in the working class neighborhoods of Baltimore, as artists today once again embrace the tradition of painted window screens, an authentic connection to the city's past."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is tremendous example of an urban cultural landscape that is distinctive to a certain place (Baltimore) and a particular time period.  The practice of painting landscape scene on window screens began over 100 years ago, as a way to beat the heat, but still afford some form of privacy.  This aesthetic emerged out of particular set of cultural, technological, and economic factors. What was once common is now perceived as a folk art that is a worth preserving because it is a marker of the local heritage.  This is an excellent example to demonstrate a sense of place that can develop within a community.  This video has been added to my ESRI StoryMap that spatially organizes place-based videos for the geography classroom (68 and counting).   

Tags: place, landscapeart, folk cultures, videoculture, community.

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Kevin Barker's curator insight, October 24, 9:22 AM

An excellent example of a localized cultural landscape characteristic that is a result of cultural diffusion that formed for economic as well as environmental factors.

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50 Years Ago, A Fluid Border Made The U.S. 1 Square Mile Smaller

50 Years Ago, A Fluid Border Made The U.S. 1 Square Mile Smaller | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Since Texas became a state, the Rio Grande has marked the border between the U.S. and Mexico. But, like rivers do, it moved. In 1964, the U.S. finally gave back 437 acres of land.


Ever since Texas became a state, the river has been the border between the two countries. But rivers can move — and that's exactly what happened in 1864, when torrential rains caused it to jump its banks and go south. Suddenly the border was in a different place, and Texas had gained 700 acres of land called the Chamizal (pronounced chah-mee-ZAHL), so named for a type of plant that grew there.


Tags: Mexico, migration, borders, political, place, podcast.   

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Sharon's curator insight, October 2, 11:02 AM

Pair with Power of Place video Boundaries and Borderlands -- Cuidad Juarez and El Paso.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, October 6, 12:33 PM

unit 4

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Burning Man and Ephemeral Geographies

"An aerial perspective on Burning Man 2013, in Black Rock Playa, NV"

Seth Dixon's insight:

This annual arts festival with a strong counter-cultural ethos literally is an experiment in producing alternative urban and cultural geographies that reject normative regulations embedded within societies. These geographies created last only about a week, as an escape from the regular strictures of society. Burning Man celebrates alternative spiritualities and creates monuments to impermanence while allowing people to wear zany costumes. Many feel that in leaving behind ‘the real world’ they find their true home at Burning Man. The ephemeral alternative geographies then fade back into the desert but not without creating a visually remarkable place. Some feel that the festival has become too popular and famous to be what it truly was intended to be as the rich and famous descend on the playa as well.


Questions to Ponder: Part of Burning Man’s success is due to its impermanence; if this community were created to exist year-round, would it still work? Why or why not? Why do festivals like this attract so many? What does it culturally say about the participants and the societies that they leave behind?


Tags: communityplace, architectureimages, art, landscape.

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Barbara Goebel's curator insight, September 13, 11:58 AM

Fascinating topic for research...connect it to ecology themes, economics, psychology...what else?

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America’s coal heartland is in economic freefall

America’s coal heartland is in economic freefall | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The coal economy in Central Appalachia is in an unprecedented freefall. Which isn't making it easier for workers to move on.
Seth Dixon's insight:

West Virginia and 'coal country' are in steep economic decline, but that doesn't mean people are eager to leave.  Leaving for many is a last resort, but when residents feel a familial and emotional connection to a place--to the land--that can create a rationale for staying that is stronger than economic push factors.  This video set in West Virgina captures the strong sense of place and community that can exist in a place even in in the face of tough times economic prospects.  Geographer Ben Marsh wrote about in a 1987 Annals article: "The residents of the anthracite towns of northeastern Pennsylvania show a considerable loyalty to a landscape that provides them with little of material value. This should remind the observer that any broad concept of place must address two different aspects of a landscape: the physical support it provides (means) and the intangible rewards it offers (meaning). "


Tagseconomicplace, industry, location, migration, APHG, poverty, socioeconomic.

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James Hobson's curator insight, September 15, 5:58 PM

(North America post 3)
Built upon from class today, this article discusses the hardship many Appalachian families are feeling as the coal mining business continues to evolve and industrialize. Although coal was the major 'boom' behind many of these towns, the 'bust' hits more than just those laid off by the industry. Like a chain reaction, other families and their businesses suffer; less income leads to less eating out leads to less income for restaurants, and it goes on and on.  This article is also good at showing that geography is more than spatial and economic: on certain levels, it's also relational, personal, cultural, and historic, giving residents strong feelings behind their decisions to stay.

Alec Castagno's curator insight, September 23, 10:44 AM

This video really shows the relationship between sense of place versus economic geography. Even though the town is no longer the rich mining town it once was, the remaining residents still cling to the past and their sense of identity remains strong. It demonstrates that cultural heritage is a powerful factor that can remain long after dramatic economic changes. Even though there are few opportunities left in the town and the majority of its young people leave for greener pastures, some residents still identify so strongly with the area that they are willing to do whatever they can to revitalize their town.

Luke Walker's curator insight, October 3, 3:42 AM

This is relevant to early posts about coalfields in West Virginia.

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How Cities Use Design to Drive Homeless People Away

How Cities Use Design to Drive Homeless People Away | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Saying 'you're not welcome here'—with spikes."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Geography explores more than just what countries control a certain territory and what landforms are there.  Geography explores the spatial manifestations of power and how place is crafted to fit a particular vision.  Homeless people are essentially always 'out of place.'  This article from the Atlantic and this one from the Guardian share similar things: that urban planners actively design places that will discourage loitering which is undesirable to local businesses.  This gallery shows various defensive architectural tactics to make certain people feel 'out of place.'  Just to show that not all urban designs are anti-homeless, this bench is one that is designed to help the homeless.     


Tags: urbanplanning, architecture, landscape, place.

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Michael MacNeil's curator insight, August 2, 8:38 AM

Lack of understanding of mental disability can lead to heartlessness. There is so much that needs to be done.

dilaycock's curator insight, August 3, 3:50 AM

I'd never really taken notice, or heard of some,  of the architectural deterrents mentioned here. I can't believe that we, as a society, go to such lengths to make life even more difficult for those already struggling. 

MsPerry's curator insight, August 12, 6:52 PM

APHG-U7

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Beijing's Facelift

"A government-initiated redevelopment plan will transform one of the oldest neighborhoods in Beijing into a polished tourist attraction."

Seth Dixon's insight:
This 2010 video (and related article) showcases one of China's urban transformation projects.  Urban revitalization plans are not without critics, especially those who see the cultural transformation of a neighborhood they deem worthy of historical preservation.  This process is occurring all over the world (we've recently seen this in Brazil as they were preparing for the World Cup).  This is one of the videos that I've put into my interactive map with over 65 geography videos to share in the classroom.
 
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James Hobson's curator insight, November 21, 9:42 PM

(East Asia topic 9)

As has been a recurring theme in past Scoops, the issues of urban renewal and gentrification can be felt throughout China and eastern Asia as well. This particular example practically acknowledges for itself that the changes occurring in this neighborhood are not at all aimed towards its citizens, but to tourists and outside industries. This same 'resetting' of a location happened in areas of Beijing just before the Olympics. China seems afraid to show its true self and can be seen as placing too much emphasis on the interests of outsiders than those of its own citizens. This may give economic gains, but the social, cultural, and historic holes the process creates can be felt for the entire future. It's like China's taking out a loan which logically cannot be repaid. 

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France to redraw nation's map to save money

France to redraw nation's map to save money | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"France's administrative regions — Normandy, Alsace, Burgundy, etc. — have long been part of the identity of citizens of this diverse country. Now, merging some of them is seen as a logical way to save money on bureaucracy, and the French support it — as long as it's someone else's turf."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is an interesting concept that shows the divergence between national and regional identities.  68% of French citizens recognize that consolidating regional administration will be economically more efficient at the national level; however 77% don't want to see the elimination of their own local region.   The formation of place-based identities operate an multiple scales.  How would you feel if your state was absorbed by a neighboring state?  How come? 


Tags: communityplacegovernance, France.

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Jordan Schemmel's curator insight, May 21, 1:04 PM

How countries identify smaller administrative regions is crucial to understanding both how they are governed, and how these regions impact cultural differences.

Kampe Kyle's curator insight, May 28, 10:18 PM

In AP Human Geo., this article relates to the theme of redistricting and political reapportionment because it involves the redrawing of geographic boundaries within a country in order to facilitate a certain political and economic outcome.

Joy Kinley's curator insight, June 16, 3:28 PM

It is amazing that people are all for redrawing and redistricting until it impacts them.  This is a touchy subject in the United States with some small towns and communities merging even though they only have decades of identity not centuries.  If these merges happen in France I see that there will be many strikes and protests and when it is over everyone still would maintain what they would call their "real identity" not what France gave them.  

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The Geography of Small Talk

The Geography of Small Talk | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Surprising alternatives to "so what do you do?"—from New Orleans to New York.
Seth Dixon's insight:

The types of questions that you ask when you are meeting someone new for the first time has some regional variations but there is much more to the geography of small talk than that as see in this 4 minute video.  People want to understand your cultural, ethnic, socioeconomic context by asking spatial questions about where you are from.  Identity and place are tightly woven and these neighborhood questions are almost invitations to share much more personal information, as if to ask, "how do you fit in this world?"  When you are being introduced to someone, what are the questions that you ask, and what type of information are you hoping to get?  Each person has their own little geography that has profoundly shaped who they are---so what’s your story? 


Tags: language, regions, folk cultures, communityplace, neighborhood.

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Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, April 24, 9:43 AM

unit 2-3

Mr Steven Newman's curator insight, April 24, 2:33 PM
Love this scoop from Seth Dixon. A nice way to help kids understand sense of place .
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New York City's Disappearing Mom-and-Pop Storefronts

New York City's Disappearing Mom-and-Pop Storefronts | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Two photographers set out to see what happened to small family businesses in New York City in a decade
Seth Dixon's insight:

The cultural landscapes of neighborhoods can change quickly as larger global economic forces restructure the places.  This is a great gallery of photos from the Smithsonian to document these changes in New York City.  Many mourn the passing of what once was as the landscape continues to be made and remade but subsequent generations. 


Tags: culture, landscape, NYCeconomic, urban, place, neighborhood.

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Ms. Harrington's curator insight, April 12, 7:28 AM

What a decade can do to a cultural landscape.

L.Long's curator insight, April 15, 6:55 PM

Changing nature of world cities

Jake Reardon's curator insight, April 21, 5:49 PM

To be honest I am surprised that "Mom and Pop" storefronts lasted this long in New York City. It just seems to me that as a city grows and rent prices go up the smaller store fronts would naturally be pushed out by larger conglomerates who would be more suited to handle the rent prices. Of course it is an old addeage of capitalism that as long as you offer a good product that consumers would be inclined to consume you can stay above water in even the most competitive locations. Although to me that would appear to have its limits. Perhaps the economic tides of the present in New York are that limit.

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7 Steps You Can Take To Address Street Harassment

7 Steps You Can Take To Address Street Harassment | Geography Education | Scoop.it
I used to think that street harassment was so entrenched in our culture and unchangeable. All I could do to address it was to cope - walk fast; avoid eye contact; pretend to be on the phone. But I got tired of feeling powerless and decided to respond to it and change the culture that allows it to continue.
Seth Dixon's insight:

People experience place and public spaces in very distinct ways--gender plays a crucial role in how we socially navigate in and through space.  This article about how women can address street harassment goes well with this additional article that tackles the problems with a society that normalizes street harassment


Tagsspace, gender, place.

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Lauren Sellers's curator insight, May 29, 12:52 AM

Like how this can relate to the popular hashtag that started a few days ago: #YesAllWomen, which stands up for women and brings attention to the problems involving rape culture and how women should change their appearance and actions in order to feel safer in a society. Women shouldnt have to live in fear every day. I like that the hashtag doesnt target every man because of course not every man is a rapist but it does target rapists and focuses on the fact that all women have or will feel harrassed by a man sometime in their life and that the reason behind the hashtag.

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Walmart Slumber Party

Walmart Slumber Party | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Who wants to spend the night in a Walmart parking lot?


There are a few generally accepted principles when it comes to the etiquette of spending the night in a vehicle in a Walmart parking lot. One night only. No chairs or barbecue grills outside an R.V. Shop at the store for gas, food or supplies, if you can, as a way of saying thanks. Walmart, the country’s largest discount retailer, says you’re welcome: its Web site says that R.V. travelers are “among our best customers.” The photographer Nolan Conway has been taking pictures of Walmart’s resident guests at several stores in central Arizona. Sophia Stauffer, a 20-year-old who travels the country in a van with her boyfriend and their dog, describes their lots, which usually feel quiet and safe, as their best option for most nights. “We really don’t want to work or live in a house,” she says.

Seth Dixon's insight:

Mobility studies and movement are key elements within geography.  This photo gallery is an intriguing glimpse into a distinct way of experiencing the United States that highlights a hyper-mobile subculture.  When discussing place we often think of the residents and workers, and think of those that use the place with some degree of permanence.  However, many people’s personal geographies are much more ephemeral, and some places are defined by their impermanence and flows.  Wanderlust can strike those in all socioeconomic sectors, and this is a great preview of those on the road.  Fittingly, the dog in this image is named Kerouc.   

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Darien Southall's comment, March 3, 1:23 AM
When I was younger my family went on a road trip before heading to a family reunion. The half a week we were on the road we stopped in Walmart parking lots during the nights. Honestly, I think that staying in a Walmart parking lot is something everyone should experience while on the road (whether it be good or bad).
Lauren Jacquez's curator insight, March 3, 12:26 PM

We see this all the time at our Walmarts in Fresno!

 

Willow Weir's comment, March 10, 12:07 PM
I can see the appeal of safety and the inexpensive nature compared to a camp. I don't think the ability to camp in their parking lots makes up for walmarts many ills considering how many families they keep in poverty
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The Mystery House

"In Raleigh, N.C., there's a house... or what looks like a house. What's hidden inside is more important than most people realize. Read the story: http://wunc.org/post/video-whats-inside-house-wade-avenue "

Seth Dixon's insight:

What looks like a wonderful little "Scooby-Doo" mystery turns out to be a great place-based video on city planning, land use and utilities (I don't want to ruin the surprise that comes at the 2 minute mark, but don't worry, it's worth it).  If you are teaching a course trying to help students to think about the inner-workings of a city this article would be a very attention grabbing way to make a good point (NPR posted article on this as well).  What 'secrets' are hidden in plain sight in your local neighborhood?  


Tagsurban, planning.


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Ms. Harrington's curator insight, January 25, 10:06 AM

A great introduction to city planning

 

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/01/17/263476645/whats-inside-this-mystery-house-in-north-carolina

 

 

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, January 27, 4:11 PM

This short YouTube clip focuses on the Governments creative ways of keeping city planning out of the eyes of everyday people. Not only do these creative ways allow cities to remain unvandalised, but they also eliminate the eye sores of waterplants and towers. I think these ideas are great and allow communities to remain beautiful and inviting. 

Tracy Galvin's comment, January 30, 3:00 PM
This is a really nice example of a respect for the neighborhood. By disguising the building it doesn't create an eyesore in the community but will allow the plant to provide a service to the neighbors. This keeps property values high and the neighbors happy.
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Cityscapes of Chicago

Cityscape Chicago II is a personal timelapse piece that I have worked on periodically over the past two years. The inspiration behind the project ties similarly with the original piece. As the city of Chicago continues to change, my fascination with it grows as well. The goal for me is always to capture the city in a unique way from new perspectives, and to continue exploring it.


Tags: Chicago, urban, place, landscape,  video.

Seth Dixon's insight:

A little closer to my home and workplace, here is a similar video about Providence, Rhode Island.

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Geographic Influences of Skating

"Dogtown and Z-Boys: A documentary about the pioneering 1970s Zephyr skating team."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Popular culture is shaped by taste-makers, counter-cultural movements, and the blending of cultural practices in new ways creating a distinct aesthetic. Often, the physical geography of a region plays a crucial role in shaping the cultural practices particular to their environment. All of that can be seen quite vividly in the colorful skating revolution of the 1970s that took shape in the Southern California. Kids who grew up idolizing surfers branched out their recreational habits into the modern form of skating that we see today at the X Games. Made legendary through a series of Skateboarder magazine articles, these kids shaped the cultural ethos of skateboarding for over a generation. With the coastal influence of surfing, the socioeconomics of a seaside slum, it’s abandoned piers, the ubiquity of cement and asphalt in the urban landscape, the run-down neighborhood of “Dogtown” was home to cultural movement. The fierce droughts of the 1970 meant abandoned swimming pools; that drought led surfers to the technological infrastructure for modern skating ramps and half pipes as they skated in emptied swimming pools. As stated in those Skaterboarder articles, “two hundred years of American technology has unwittingly created a massive cement playground of unlimited potential. But it was the minds of 11 year olds that could see that potential.” The documentary “Dogtown and Z-Boys” (trailer) and the fictionalized “Lords of Dogtown,” (trailer) both produced by skater turned filmmaker Stacy Peralta, chronicle the age (“Lords of Dogtown” is not appropriate for the K-12 classroom viewing).


Tags: place, spacesport, California, landscapevideo, popular culture, music.

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For Yazidis, Exile From Spiritual Homeland in Iraq Dilutes Ancient Culture

For Yazidis, Exile From Spiritual Homeland in Iraq Dilutes Ancient Culture | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Some are contemplating migration, severing ties to their holy land. Others want to stay and protect their shrines.
Seth Dixon's insight:

When we discuss the geography of religion, frequently we are discussing the distribution of particular religions.  However, some religions are deeply embedded in particular places and their spiritual rites, customs and traditions are intrinsically linked with sacred spaces and particular geographies.  The Yazidi are are religious group that is deeply connected to the mountains of northern Iraq--areas that are now being evacuated because of ISIS.  Some are contemplating migrating to safety, but severing their ties to their holy land. Others want to stay and protect their sacred spaces.


Tagsplace, culture religion, Middle East.

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MsPerry's curator insight, September 21, 3:19 PM

APHG-U3

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, October 29, 12:49 PM

With ISIS on the rise in Iraq they are forcibly pushing people of the Yazidi faith out of their homeland which also serves as their holy land.  This place is very sacred to them, described as being as important to them as Mecca is to Muslims.  This is giving people an extremely hard choice to make.  Do they evacuate and go into the mountains leaving their sacred homeland because of the threat of ISIS against their people, or do they stay put where their roots are and risk being killed by ISIS.  A majority of the people that live here say that they would not want to leave their land and would rather live here no matter the circumstances than live anywhere else, showing you just how dedicated these people are to the place that they live.

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Remembering the Real Violence in Ferguson

Remembering the Real Violence in Ferguson | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Violence has a geography and for this reason, geography lies at the center of discussions of violence. Within the United States a myriad of taken for granted assumptions about identity, place, power, and memory undergird the nation’s psyche.  These normative interpretations intersect with a particular kind of geographic formulation that places persons of color in general, but black men most specifically, at the center of the violent structures of the nation."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This isn't merely commentary about social upheaval or some musing about the social inequities (I think we've all read a ton of those articles).  This is a geographic analysis that discusses the interactions, interconnections and implications of a social and spatial conflict between citizens and the institutions of the state.  Ferguson, MO is undoubtedly a lightning rod today and some might prefer to avoid discussing it in a classroom setting; I find that as long as we put analysis before ideology, issues such as these show students the relevance and importance of geographic principles to their lives. 


Tags: race, class, gender, place, poverty, socioeconomic.

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Rob Duke's comment, September 19, 12:58 AM
Seth, yes, couldn't agree more. I think this is a great example where our fields can be complementary in theory and the tools we use.
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Stop Complaining About Gentrification Unless You Know What It Is

Stop Complaining About Gentrification Unless You Know What It Is | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"In many cities, it's become popular to hate 'gentrifiers,' rich people who move in and drive up housing prices -- pushing everyone else out. But what's going on in these rapidly-changing urban spaces is a lot more complicated than that."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Gentrification can be a very touchy subject.  What appears to be economic revitalization of a down-trodden neighborhood to one, can appear to be systematic removal of minorities to another.  This op-ed isn't a whole-hearted embrace of gentrification, but it might be seen as a critique of the gentrification critics.

  

Tags: neighborhood, gentrificationurban, place, culture, economic.

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Google Maps Smarty Pins

Google Maps Smarty Pins | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Smarty Pins is a Google Maps based geography and trivia game.
Seth Dixon's insight:

As stated in a review of Smarty Pins on Mashable, "Google unveiled a fun new game this week that tests players' geography and trivia skills.  Called 'Smarty Pins' the game starts players off with 1,000 miles (or 1,609 kilometers if they're not based in the United States), and asks them to drop a pin on the city that corresponds with the correct answer to a given question." 


This game is wonderfully addictive...I haven't enjoyed a mapping trivia platform this much since I discovered GeoGuessr.  I answered 38 questions before I ran out of miles...how far did you get?  


Tagsgoogle, fun, mapping, place, trivia.

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flea palmer's curator insight, July 7, 10:33 AM

This is really good fun - I got gold (14/15) not sure how many miles though!

Tom Franta's curator insight, July 10, 9:54 AM

An interesting way to get anyone interacting with Google Maps...

MsPerry's curator insight, August 12, 7:42 PM

APHG-MAPS

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NAFTA an empty basket for farmers in southern Mexico

NAFTA an empty basket for farmers in southern Mexico | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"When the agreement between the United States, Mexico and Canada went into effect in 1994, it removed nearly all trade barriers between the countries. Among the industries affected was agriculture, forcing small Mexican farmers into direct competition with big American agribusiness. Cheap American corn – heavily subsidized, mechanized and genetically modified – soon flooded the Mexican market to the detriment of local farmers.  As U.S. farmers exported their subsidized corn to Mexico, local producer prices plummeted and small farmers could no longer earn enough to live on."

Seth Dixon's insight:

International trade agreements are usually discussed at the national level.  "NAFTA benefits Mexico" is a commonly heard saying because trade with the United States and Canada strengthens the manufacturing sector in Mexico.  Even if there is an overall benefit to a country, there are always winners and losers for different regions, economic sectors and many other demographic groups.   Farmers in southern Mexico were certainly a sector that struggled mightily under NAFTA.


Tags: Mexicosupranationalism, industry, place, agriculture, food production,

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Jason Wilhelm's curator insight, May 29, 11:44 AM

The American agricultural industry has been highly subsidized by the government to create interest in farming and food production. This causes problems for America's neighboring countries' resident farmers. The Mexican corn farmers are struggling mightily with the influx of cheap American corn into Mexico due to the open trade policies created by NAFTA. Some tariffs or new economic regulations must be created to protect Mexican corn farmers and regulate the amount of cheap American corn that is flooding Mexican markets. 

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, September 29, 12:44 PM

With all the good we thought NAFTA did for the three countries involved, I feel that sometimes we overlook the bad.  Southern Mexico has felt all negative affects from NAFTA.  While the northern states in Mexico are able to keep up with the advanced agricultural processes that America has, the south is unable to.  The old techniques and lack of machinery prevents the south from having any possible competition with the north as well as America leaving the south to become extremely impoverished and potentially unsuitable for any living.

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A Map of Baseball Nation

A Map of Baseball Nation | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Fans may not list which team they favor on the census, but millions of them do make their preferences public on Facebook. Using aggregated data provided by the company, we were able to create an unprecedented look at the geography of baseball fandom, going down not only to the county level, as Facebook did in a nationwide map it released a few weeks ago, but also to ZIP codes."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This isn't just a fun sports map--there are some good geographic concepts that can be used here.  When discussing cultural regions, many use the core-domain-sphere model.  This map uses the brightest color intensities to represent the core regions and the lightest hues to show waning strength, but to still signify that the area is a part of a team's sphere of influence.  Essentially, this map is begging you to explore the borderlands, the liminal "in-between" spaces that aren't as easy to explain.  What other phenomena can be used to demonstrate the core-domain-sphere model of cultural regions?  What other geographic concepts can you teach using this map?  


Tags: fun, sport, placeborders, statistics, mapping, regions.

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Greg Russak's curator insight, April 29, 12:53 PM

Maps and baseball - a good combination!

Wyatt Wolf's curator insight, October 30, 7:46 PM

My favorite baseball team is the Philadelphia Phillies, here's everyone else's.

Global Speechwriter's comment, November 4, 2:52 AM
Jays? C'mon.
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Economic Decline and Sense of Place

"McDowell County, situated in the coalfields of West Virginia, has experienced a great boom-and-bust since 1950. But despite the economic decline and population loss, many still call it home and feel a great sense of purpose among the mountains. Residents speak about their connection to this place and the meaning of 'home.' Hear more stories at hollowdocumentary.com "

Seth Dixon's insight:

This video perfectly exemplifies some key geographic ideas; sense of place, regional economic decline, migration and resource extraction.  This video would be great to shows students and then get them to analyze the geographic context that creates a place like McDowell County, West Virginia.  This will be a great addition to my Place-Based Geography Videos StoryMap.  


Tagseconomicplace, industry, location, migration, APHG, poverty, socioeconomic.

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dilaycock's curator insight, April 29, 6:51 PM

Excellent example of urban decline. Would pair nicely with a reading from 'Rocket Boys' by Homer Hickam Jnr, or with the movie version 'October Sky.' The book and movie are the true story of a boy in Coalwood, West Virginia in the 1950s who is determined to  "escape" working in the coal mines to become a rocket scientist.

John Nieuwendyk's curator insight, September 16, 11:02 PM

 McDowell, a once thriving county in the 1950’s ceased to keep up with the ever-chaning world. There was little need for coal after the 1980’s so work became scarce and the “Brain Drain” began. Those looking for a successful future left for there was more choice elsewhere and economically it would make no sense to stay in McDowell. Nevertheless, cultural upbringings paved way to this "Boom and Bust” town, which gave people a sense of place and identity. Though McDowell is economically on the decline the communal relations and sense of place the community holds is still strong. 

Luke Walker's curator insight, October 3, 3:41 AM

Develop your sense of place regarding the coalfields of West Virginia.

What geographic context (location) might create a place like McDowell County, West Virginia?

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Place and Opinions

Place and Opinions | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Seth Dixon's insight:

Some deeply held opinions that individuals hold are rooted in the cultural and regional influences (even if they feel that they are being purely objective).  Sports fans though, are rarely objective and are often swayed by those opinions that they hear the most, which often come for those closest to us.  While we are on the subject of basketball and geography, you've got to try Population Bracketology, which challenges your knowledge on the sizes of Metropolitan Statistic Areas and state population.     


Tags: fun, sport, place.

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Ms. Harrington's curator insight, March 31, 7:11 PM

Sports and regions

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Countries Divided on Future of Ancient Buddhas

Countries Divided on Future of Ancient Buddhas | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Thirteen years after the Bamian Buddhas were blasted into rubble, opinion is split on whether to leave them as is, rebuild them, or make copies of them.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This video and article work together to show a 'behind-the-scenes' glimpse of this heritage site, or the remnants of the old memorial which is an iconic part of the cultural landscape in their own right but for very different reasons.  This is a great example of sequent occupance and some of the difficulties in preserving heritage.  Some argue that by restoring the Buddha it will undo some of the damage done by the Taliban and create a tourist destination; others think that the damaged Buddha is a poignant reminder of problems with 'topocide' and religious intolerance. 


Questions to Ponder: What do you think should become of this place?  How come?    


Tags: Afghanistan, politicalculture, Central Asialandscape, perspective.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, March 28, 5:43 PM

Protecting significant landscapes

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 14, 5:17 PM

This video starts by talking about the issue at hand of who should recieve this specific historical site. The video and article overlap in talking about the division between which country should be entitiled to their ancestors Buddahs. This is an extremely important issue at hand the resolotion is crucial to the countries getting along again.

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 5, 3:31 PM

It is sad that the Taliban would destroy such beautiful monuments but I don't think it is possible to rebuild them. It would not be a matter of gluing together pieces laying around, the statues would have to be completely recarved. I do not think that could be considered a reconstruction, more like a completely new item. The history would not be there.

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Battling Blight: Detroit Maps Entire City To Find Bad Buildings

Battling Blight: Detroit Maps Entire City To Find Bad Buildings | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The high-tech project would help officials decide which abandoned buildings can be demolished.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This crowd-sourced mapping project is an great example of how a community can work together (using geospatial technologies and geographic thinking) to mitigate some of the more pressing issues confronting the local neighborhoods.  Many optimists have argued that Detroit has "good bones" to rebuild the city, but it needs to built on as smaller scale.  This project helps to assess what is being used by residents and should stay, and what needs to go.  Want to explore some of the data yourself?  See Data Driven Detroit.      

 

Tagsurban, unit 7 cities, housing, economic, povertyplace, socioeconomic, neighborhoodmapping, GIS, geospatial.


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Melissa Marie Falco-Dargitz's curator insight, September 17, 1:18 PM

So many of the buildings in Detroit have fallen out of use, and are being inhabited by squatters, drug users and vermin. The kindest thing to do is to demolish the ragtag structures in hopes of a chance to revitalize the fallen city. It was one of the first major cities in the US to be primarily built for the automobile. Although the city has fallen out of favor as industry has relocated, it was a well planned metropolis, and has a repairable infrastructure. The sewer lines, electric grid and paved streets lend to the idea of regrowing the city. By using input of the citizens, the government and city planners are able to identify what is useful and what needs to be demolished.