Geography Education
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Curated by Seth Dixon
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The Danger of a Single Story

Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice -- and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.
Seth Dixon's insight:

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 can we teach and learn about other places in a way that develops geographic empathy and shows the many stories of that can belong to any one place? 


Tags: Africa, perspective, TED.

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Hailan Yu's curator insight, December 4, 2015 9:23 AM

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 can we teach and learn about other places in a way that develops geographic empathy and shows the many stories of that can belong to any one place? 

 

Tags: Africa, perspective, TED.

Kevin Nguyen's curator insight, December 13, 2015 9:41 PM

The broad paint brush that we paint over Africa as a place of poverty, underdevelopment and lack of education  is just mind blowing. The story that Ms. Adichie told about her life was very interesting and fascinating at the same time. It seems like she grew up from well off household, reading English books and having a normal life. However, when she went over aboard to U.S she experienced a culture shock of how people generalized Africa as a whole continent without any diversity. 

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Stats that reshape your world-view

With the drama and urgency of a sportscaster, statistics guru Hans Rosling uses an amazing new presentation tool, Gapminder, to present data that debunks several myths about world development. Rosling is professor of international health at Sweden's Karolinska Institute, and founder of Gapminder, a nonprofit that brings vital global data to life.
Seth Dixon's insight:

It is never a bad time to hear from Hans Rosling.  In this TED talk he shares data that shows how popular myths about the less developed world (especially fertility rates and life expectancy) have radically changed in the last 40 years.


Tags: gapminder, development, TED.

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Deanna Metz's curator insight, March 1, 8:04 PM

It is never a bad time to hear from Hans Rosling.  In this TED talk he shares data that shows how popular myths about the less developed world (especially fertility rates and life expectancy) have radically changed in the last 40 years.


Tags: gapminder, development, TED.

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Using Humor to Break Stereotypes

"A founding member of the Axis of Evil Comedy Tour, standup comic Maz Jobrani riffs on the challenges and conflicts of being Iranian-American -- 'like, part of me thinks I should have a nuclear program; the other part thinks I can't be trusted ...'"

Seth Dixon's insight:

This comedian doesn't just get laughs; he uses stand-up as a platform for discussing important social issues and to foster greater cultural understanding.  His big goal is to break stereotypical perspectives of Muslims and Middle Easterners by showing that "there are good people everywhere."  Here is another of his entertaining and educational TED talks.  


Tags: Middle East, TEDglobalization, culture, Islam.

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Michael Amberg's curator insight, May 26, 2015 10:49 PM

The video is an example as how anything can be used to help break stereotypes all you have to do is try.

Sharrock's curator insight, June 22, 2015 1:13 PM

A way to explore stereotypes and being American. Teachers can explore these issues to attack immigration, ethnicity, perspective, and more. 

Mark Hathaway's curator insight, October 22, 2015 7:49 AM

At its best, humor can break down old stereotypes and foster a greater degree of cultural understanding. That is exactly what Maz Jobrani is trying to accomplish with his humor. There are obvious stereotypes about Muslims that are often far too pervasive in our culture. The most common stereotype  is the lumping of all Muslims into one monolithic group.  All Muslims are not the same. Like Christianity, not all Muslims interpret their holy book in the same exact way. The large majority of Muslims are good people who respect American ideals. Hopefully, Jobranis humor can reach some people who may not understand those facts.

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The ghastly tragedy of the suburbs

The ghastly tragedy of the suburbs | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In James Howard Kunstler's view, public spaces should be inspired centers of civic life and the physical manifestation of the common good. Instead, he argues, what we have in America is a nation of places not worth caring about.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Kunstler passionately 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. 


Question to Ponder: How should we design cities to create a strong sense of place?  What elements are necessary?  Warning: He uses some strong language.  


Tagsurban, planning architecture, suburbs, TED, video.

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Kevin Barker's curator insight, January 21, 2015 9:02 AM

This could become something of a fixation for me.  Plano TX is seen on many levels of a great suburban city but here is one way it is lacking most.

Linda Denty's curator insight, February 3, 2015 5:41 PM
Strong language used in this!
Zeke Robinson's curator insight, May 26, 2015 9:23 PM

i disagree with this guy, for suburbs bring us close and save space and its good that we have them.

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The surprising math of cities and corporations

"Physicist Geoffrey West has found that simple, mathematical laws govern the properties of cities — that wealth, crime rate, walking speed and many other aspects of a city can be deduced from a single number: the city's population. In this mind-bending talk from TEDGlobal he shows how it works and how similar laws hold for organisms and corporations."

Seth Dixon's insight:

While corporations rise and fall, it is quite rare for a city to entirely fail as an economic system.  Huge cities have some negative consequences, but the networks that operate in the city function more efficiently on economies of scale in a way that offsets the negatives.  Increasing a city's population will continue to improve the economies of scale (larger cities have higher wages per capita, more creative employment per capita, etc.).  However, this growth requires major technological innovations to sustain long-term growth.  

 

Tagsurban, planningmegacities, industry, economic, scaleTED, video.

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Built 4 Betterness Ed van den Berg's curator insight, December 14, 2014 3:17 PM

Not surprisingly the DNA of cities is a follow-up of human DNA and understanding this will explain and predict how the body of a city will develop!

SRA's curator insight, April 16, 2015 2:10 AM

The idea that cities are just organisms that are satisfying the laws of biology is interesting. Especially because Physicist Geoffrey West brings the idea of Scalability which by definition is, the ability of a system, network, or process to handle a growing amount of work in a capable manner or its ability to be enlarged to accommodate that growth. What’s mind blowing to me is that the system that is referred to here is human interaction.  We create these cities through our interaction and experience. With a growth rate of 1,000,000 people every year the math adds up to an agreeable 15% rise in income levels, patents, and super creative people every year which is undoubted a win for civilization and society. But with that we must keep in mind also this means a 15% increase in things like deadly disease, crime, poverty, and ecological issues leading to further degradation of our planet. This unbounded growth means the system is destined to collapse. The math behind cities doesn't lie if we don’t prepare cities have a fate to die like every other organism in Biology. So it is up to us to create and innovate to sustain this growth and avoid the collapse. But we must do so at a forever increasing pace. Which subsequently is also part of another system predetermined to collapse. What I mean is what happens when we cannot innovate fast enough to sustain this growth?


- Caleb Beckett

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:14 AM

While corporations rise and fall, it is quite rare for a city to entirely fail as an economic system.  Huge cities have some negative consequences, but the networks that operate in the city function more efficiently on economies of scale in a way that offsets the negatives.  Increasing a city's population will continue to improve the economies of scale (larger cities have higher wages per capita, more creative employment per capita, etc.).  However, this growth requires major technological innovations to sustain long-term growth.  

 

Tags: urban, planning, megacities, industry, economic, scale, TED, video.

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How cultures around the world make decisions

How cultures around the world make decisions | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Is the American obsession with individual freedom really such a great idea? What other cultures know about how to make good choices.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This article show three distinct cultural approaches to the concept of choice, showing how they shape people and communities and cultural systems.  The three models discussed are:

  • One American model: Give me personal autonomy or give me death.
  • The Amish model: Belonging, not choice, is crucial.
  • One Asian model: Focus on interdependence and harmony, not independence and self-expression.

This TED talk from Malcolm Gladwell is also an interesting exploration into the world of choice and options.


Tagsculture, worldwideTED.

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Dennis Swender's curator insight, November 11, 2014 3:31 PM

Decision tilmes, more or less

Scott Langston's curator insight, November 16, 2014 6:26 PM

Culture's influence on decision-making

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The Greatest Invention?

"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."

Seth Dixon's insight:

What one invention has made the greatest difference in the lives of people all around the world?  The case can be made for the washing machine; it has been a major tool in transforming the lives of women and restructuring gender roles in industrialized societies. 


Tags: gapminder, poverty gendertechnology, industry, development, TED.

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Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, May 21, 2015 4:05 PM

unit 6

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, May 21, 2015 4:06 PM

unit 6 key concepts: industrialization, development, technology  

Ryan Tibari's curator insight, May 27, 2015 10:23 AM

Washing machine, the greatest invention of the industrial revolution. Hans Rosling further proves this point, highlighting many aspects of how industrialization not only changed the economy, but the people.

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Comparing the five major world religions

"It's perfectly human to grapple with questions, like 'Where do we come from?' and 'How do I live a life of meaning?' These existential questions are central to the five major world religions -- and that's not all that connects these faiths. John Bellaimey explains the intertwined histories and cultures of Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity and Islam."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This TED ED Lesson outlines the basics of five major world religions which in turn have profoundly reshaped the cultural geographies we see today.  While the narration in the video might be a bit dry, the visuals immerse the viewer into the cultural context from which these religions emerged.   


Tags: religion, culture, TEDChristianity, Islam, unit 3 culture.

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Lindley Amarantos's curator insight, September 5, 2014 9:13 AM

Great insight into our 5 major world religions.

Brett Laskowitz's curator insight, January 28, 2015 12:06 PM

This is also a good introductory video for the Religion unit.  It will at least give students a general overview of the major world religions as a baseline of information to reference when diving deeper into the unit content.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, June 1, 2015 10:10 AM

unit 3

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Why do competitors open their stores next to one another?

"Why are all the gas stations, cafes and restaurants in one crowded spot? As two competitive cousins vie for ice-cream-selling domination on one small beach, discover how game theory and the Nash Equilibrium inform these retail hotspots."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This TED-ED lesson shows the economic and spatial factors that lead to businesses to cluster together.  This video is a very simple introduction to the concept of agglomeration that is based on competition.

 

Tags: APHGTED, models, spatialK12, location.

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CT Blake's curator insight, August 29, 2014 8:03 PM

For use in understanding the placement of businesses in Human Geography.

Luke Walker's curator insight, October 3, 2014 3:34 AM

A great video lesson that gets at the heart of location theory and competition.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, June 1, 2015 10:11 AM

unit 6

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Urbanization and the evolution of cities across 10,000 years

"About 10,000 years ago, hunter-gatherers, aided by rudimentary agriculture, moved to semi-permanent villages and never looked back. With further developments came food surpluses, leading to commerce, specialization and, many years later with the Industrial Revolution, the modern city. Vance Kite plots our urban past and how we can expect future cities to adapt to our growing populations."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This TED-ED lesson briefly summarizes the history of urban development and the technological advances that enable it.  Towards the end of the video they offer some suggestions that would make cities more sustainable as urban populations continue to grow.  What do you think of these suggestions?  


Tags: historical, urban, planning, TED

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steve smith's curator insight, June 7, 2014 9:01 PM

A great look at urbanisation. 

Fathie Kundie's curator insight, June 8, 2014 9:48 AM

تاريخ التطور الحضري

Bronwyn Burke's curator insight, June 14, 2014 7:18 PM

Fabulous link between Geography and History

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Population pyramids: Powerful predictors of the future

"Population statistics are like crystal balls -- when examined closely, they can help predict a country's future (and give important clues about the past). Kim Preshoff explains how using a visual tool called a population pyramid helps policymakers and social scientists make sense of the statistics, using three different countries' pyramids as examples."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is an incredibly powerful and remarkably well-done TED-ED lesson on the importance and value of population pyramids.  This lesson goes nicely with this article fro the World Bank entitled "The End of the Population Pyramid" which highlights the demographic changes that will be reshaping global demographics in the next 50-100 years.  


Tag: population, demographic transition model, TED.

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Nancy Watson's curator insight, September 26, 2014 4:04 PM

Population unit

Lauren Quincy's curator insight, March 20, 2015 1:51 PM

Unit 2: Population and Migration

 

This video was about how demographers categorize data and analyze it. This video showed a few different population pyramids in order to show differences in population in different countries. It showed China as an example and pointed out the remnants of the one child policy 35 years before and how the number of men were higher due to sex selective abortions. They also talked about how the population pyramids could show what stage in the demographic transition model a country was in and how they use them to predict future patterns and changes. 

 

This relates to unit 2 because it covers topics such as population change, demographic transition models, sex composition, population policies and much more. Population pyramids are very useful due to the visualization of sex, age and number composition in a countries population. They are very important in the use of predicting the future change in population because it can tell what the population has gone through in the past and what to expect in the DTM. 

Daniel Lindahl's curator insight, March 21, 2015 10:43 PM

This video illustrates how population pyramids have the ability to show how populations will rise and fall over time. Pyramids specifically show the population based on a specific age, and illustrates a country's amount of young people in comparison to the elderly. 

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Pangaea and Plate Tectonics

The supercontinent Pangaea, with its connected South America and Africa, broke apart 200 million years ago. But the continents haven't stopped shifting -- the tectonic plates beneath our feet (in Earth's two top layers, the lithosphere and the asthenosphere) are still traveling at about the rate your fingernails grow. Michael Molina discusses the catalysts and consequences of continental drift.

Seth Dixon's insight:

This Ted-ED lesson is a great visual way to show the basics of plate tectonics and some geomorphological processes. 


Tags: physical, geomorphology, TED, K12, video.

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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 11, 2014 2:03 PM

Plate tectonics have alot to do with the world and how the world will evolve and in which way it will tranform in specific places. Pangaea involves not only Africa but also South America and how they broke away from the rest of the contenents about 200 million years ago. This idea involves the reality that the continents never stop shifting and the top two layer's of the Earth still grow at the rate of our finger nails grow. Divergent and Convergent boundries are apparent in the Earths ability to shift and eith come together or dive apart.

Edelin Espino's curator insight, November 26, 2014 4:55 PM

Very interesting that the earth has changed and continues to change. The continents have been separated over time and the example is there as Michael Molina explains that the continents of Africa and South America were once united as they have found remains of dinosaurs in eastern South America and West Africa.

April Howard's curator insight, February 13, 2015 1:36 PM

Visual Explanation of Pangaea and Plate Tectonics

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Using Humor to Learn

Iranian-American comedian Maz Jobrani takes to the TEDxSummit stage in Doha, Qatar to take on serious issues in the Middle East -- like how many kisses to give when saying “Hi,” and what not to say on an American airplane.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This comedian doesn't just get laughs; he uses stand-up as a platform for discussing important social issues and to foster greater cultural understanding.  His big goal is to break stereotypical perspectives of Muslims and show that "there are good people everywhere."  Here is another of his entertaining and educational TED talks.  


Tags: Middle East, TEDglobalization, culture, Islam.

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Lena Minassian's curator insight, March 22, 2015 3:56 PM

This video was great to watch. I watched this in class and had to write about it. Humor is a great way to shed light on certain topics that can be really heavy. This comedian is middle eastern himself which makes it better for him to talk about these topics. Many individuals don't know the lighter side to middle eastern people just because all they see is negative aspects of the culture. I enjoyed that he could talk about serious topics and have a room full of people not only laughing at it but being educated at the same time. People don't feel like they're being strictly taught because they're watching a comedian give a show. Being middle eastern myself, i found this video great because raising awareness and allowing more insight about the middle east is a powerful thing when it has always has a negative context. 

Jacob Conklin's curator insight, May 6, 2015 4:42 PM

"I never knew these people laughed." This is perhaps one of the most sad things that could be said. It dehumanizes the middle east in a very cruel way. It implies that people in the middle east do not have any sense of humor and are always serious about everything. Like the United States, there are times to be serious, but there are also times to laugh. The media and even the film industry in the US portrays the middle east as Sodom and Gomorra and the people from the area as misogynistic religious fanatics. It is truly sad that we live in a world where prejudices trump openness and acceptance.      

Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 2:17 PM

its interesting because this video make the middle east seem more european with the differences in culture. people tend to clump these countries together but they are very different and should be seen that way

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How Not to Be Ignorant About the World

How much do you know about the world? Hans Rosling, with his famous charts of global population, health and income data (and an extra-extra-long pointer), demonstrates that you have a high statistical chance of being quite wrong about what you think you know. Play along with his audience quiz — then, from Hans’ son Ola, learn 4 ways to quickly get less ignorant.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Our preconceived notions of places, as well as some of the dominant narratives about regions, can cloud our understanding about the world today.  This video is a good introduction to the Ignorance Project which shows how personal bias, outdated world views and news bias collectively make combating global ignorance difficult.   However, the end of the video shows some good rules of thumb to have a more fact-based world view.  


Tagsstatistics, placeregions, media, models, gapminderdevelopment, perspective.

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Adilson Camacho's curator insight, September 18, 2015 11:32 PM

adicionar sua visão ...

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99 Percent Invisible

Roman Mars is obsessed with flags — and after you watch this talk, you might be, too. These ubiquitous symbols of civic pride are often designed, well, pretty terribly. But they don't have to be. In this surprising and hilarious talk about vexillology — the study of flags — Mars reveals the five basic principles of flag design and shows why he believes they can be applied to just about anything.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I’m not ashamed to admit that I love flags; I enjoy thinking about the cultural, economic and geopolitical symbolism embedded in the flags and what that means for the places they represent.  I share the above video for that purpose, but more importantly because it is an introduction to the audio podcast 99 Percent Invisible with a special ‘behind-the-scenes’ peek and how this podcast on flag design was made (and here is a snarky critique of all U.S. state flags).  Great geography resources rarely fall under the title “Geography” with a capital G.  It takes geographic training to “see the geography” in the world around us.  I’ve recently discovered the 99 Percent Invisible Podcast and while it is not explicitly (or even always) geographic, it is loaded with excellent materials about design and the details of the world around us that often go unnoticed, but deserve greater scrutiny.  For example the episodes on the Port of Dallas as well as reversing of the Chicago River show how the physical and human systems intersect within urban areas.  These two geo-engineering projects also were conceived on in very particular social, economic and technological contexts.

I also loved the episode Monumental Dilemma, about the uncomfortable 1800s New England memorialization of Hannah Duston for scalping Native Americans…this is incredibly awkward culturally as our society and social values have changes over the years.  Do we tear it down? Ignore it?  Apologize?  Since the historical legacy is unsettled, so is the monument.  So I’ll keep listening to the 99 Percent Invisible podcast and please recommend some especially geographic past episodes as I dig through the archives.                

 

Tagspodcast, architecture, TED.

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How does the United Nations work?

"Ever curious about the reaches of the United Nation and what they do? Here's a great video featuring Dr. Binoy Kampmark from RMIT University.  This short video can help improve your understanding of the UN, including its role in world politics and policy making."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This video is a part of a TED-ED lesson that is short and sweet.

 

Tags: supranationalism, political, TED, video.

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Eden Eaves's curator insight, May 24, 2015 8:47 PM

Unit 4

This video explains what goes on at United Nations meetings. 193 people gather in New York to discuss matters of peace and security. Established in 1945 made up of 50 countries and made to prevent another World War. The UN deals with matters of economics social policy, human rights, and culture. And the most important parts is the security council (made up of France, Britain, the United States, China, and Russia) and the general assembly. 

Jacob McCullough's curator insight, May 26, 2015 6:01 PM

Just a nice brief summary or how the United nations worked for political geography 

Shane C Cook's curator insight, May 27, 2015 8:47 AM

The UN is one of the most impact organizations we have today. The UN is a powerful peacekeeping supranational organization organized to help all nations and countries

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Without mental maps, we’re lost

Without mental maps, we’re lost | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Elwood was a senior geographer working on the ground-floor of the very global positioning systems (GPS) and geographic information systems (GIS) he will throw up for discussion in his TEDx talk.

His question: Are we surrendering our innate mental map making abilities to technology and relying on and trusting it too much? And for TEDx audiences only, he’ll toss out ideas on ways to prevent that from happening.


Tags: mappingGPS, cartographyTED201.

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Jeff Cherry's curator insight, January 12, 2015 9:08 AM

The mind is a terrible thing to waste.

Wyatt Fratnz's curator insight, March 18, 2015 8:08 PM

This text tells about a geographer who exaggerates today's modern dependency of Global Positioning Systems and Mapping, and the importance of still developing a mental map. It is important because lack of reliance of our mental maps leads to a primal fear and increasing instances of the feeling of being lost. The challenge is presented of how we stimulate technology in our mental maps. 

 

This article describes technological and mental process of mapping and how we should use it in our everyday lives. This is important because it gives humans a sense of direction and tells us how to keep it.

Carlee Allen's curator insight, March 26, 2015 6:20 PM

This is an article that explains and adds on to the fact that we Americans have begun too reliant on technology. Keith explains how kids now a days don't have a geographical sense and how it is really going to hurt them in the future.

 

I thought that this article was interesting, because it is a pretty controversial topic and very relatable.

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Changing The World, One Map At A Time

Maps have always been a source of fascination and intrigue. Today's maps, however, can also help to save lives during disasters, document human rights abuses and monitor elections in countries under repressive rule. This presentation will explain how today's live maps can combine crowds and clouds to drive social change.
Seth Dixon's insight:

On this day of giving thanks, I want to remind this community that geospatial skills can be used to help othersWant to see geographic knowledge and geospatial skills in action?  Crowd-sourced mapping is increasingly an important resource during an emergency.  Poorer places are often not as well mapped out by the commercial cartographic organizations and these are oftentimes the places that are hardest hit by natural disasters.  Relief agencies depend on mapping platforms to handle the logistics of administering aid and assessing the extent of the damage and rely on these crowd-sourced data sets made by people like you and me. 


Tagsdisasters, mapping, cartographyTED201, video.

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Feeding the Whole World

"Louise Fresco argues that a smart approach to large-scale, industrial farming and food production will feed our planet's incoming population of nine billion. Only foods like (the scorned) supermarket white bread, she says, will nourish on a global scale."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Many advocates of local foods favor a small-scale approach to farming and are opposed to large-scale agribusiness. It might be easy for those disconnected from the food production system (like me) to romanticize and mythologize the farmers of yesteryear and yearn to return to this past.  This talk highlights how essential large-scale farming is absolutely critical to feeding the global population; this other TED talk discusses many of the hunger problems especially the uneven access to food.  Here are some other pro-agribusiness resources.   


Tags: agriculture, food production, food distribution, agribusiness, TED

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dilaycock's curator insight, October 19, 2014 6:45 PM

Fresco argues that we tend to see "home-made" agriculture as a thing of beauty, whereas the reality is that many small scale farmers struggle and live a subsistence lifestyle. The adoration of small-scale farming, notes Fresco, is a luxury to those who can afford it. Large-scale production has increased the availability and affordability of food. Food production should be given as high a priority as climate change and sustainability, and we should seriously consider ways in which land can be used as a multi-purpose space that includes agriculture.

Stephen Zimmett's curator insight, October 24, 2014 10:55 AM

Louise Fresco speaks of local food production and small scale control

and the entire food nework

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, March 16, 3:43 PM

Many advocates of local foods favor a small-scale approach to farming and are opposed to large-scale agribusiness. It might be easy for those disconnected from the food production system (like me) to romanticize and mythologize the farmers of yesteryear and yearn to return to this past.  This talk highlights how essential large-scale farming is absolutely critical to feeding the global population; this other TED talk discusses many of the hunger problems especially the uneven access to food.  Here are some other pro-agribusiness resources.   

 

Tags: agriculture, food production, food distribution, agribusiness, TED

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Alexander von Humboldt

"Have you heard of Alexander von Humboldt? Not likely. The geologist turned geographer and South American explorer was a bit of an 18th century super scientist, traveling over 24,000 miles to understand the relationship between nature and habitat. George Mehler details Humboldt’s major accomplishments and why we should care about them today. See this TED ED lesson plan that accompanies the video."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Alexander von Humboldt has been described as the last great ancient geographer concerned with understanding an eclectic cosmography as well as the first modern geographer. He is honored far and wide throughout Latin America and Europe, but given that intellectually people are confused as how to categorize him and classify his contributions, today he is under-appreciated.  Geographers need to reclaim his memory and call his extensive, globetrotting work on a wide range of subjects 'geography.'  Here is another article on the most influential scientist that you might not have heard of (at least until today).    


Tags:  historicalbiogeography, unit 1 Geoprinciples, TED.

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Alyssa Dorr's curator insight, December 16, 2014 6:39 PM

I had not heard of Alexander Von Humbboldt before watching this video. He is said to be one of the most amazing scientists to ever live. More places around the world have been named after him than any other person. His name was lost in history so this is why many people are not familiar with him. He started off as a geologist, then he began a scientific five year journey from 1799-1804. His journey was long, dangerous at some times, and very interesting to hear about. He travel through mountains, across oceans, and through villages. For one thing, he was the first explorer to witness preparation of the curare plant, which was used for poison arrows. He recognized the importance of the cinchona tree, who's bark contains quinine, a malaria killer. He also discovered the ocean current which eliminates rainfall on the coast of Peru. To record air pressure, he climbed to the top of one of the tallest volcanoes, Mount Chimborazo. His total journey consisted of about 2400 miles, which is reality is equal to the circumference of the Earth.

Danielle Lip's curator insight, February 10, 2015 8:42 PM

This video was quite interesting because I had never heard of Alexander von Humboldt, yet this great scientist founded many different important facts that are beneficial and helped to find with the preparation of the Curare Plant which is in poisonous arrows and discovered the ocean current on South America. Without Humboldt South America might have been at a lose for some objects and geographical information. Everyone has an impact in geography and geology, yet Humboldt helped to create contour maps which happened different patterns, everyone builds off of others ideas. 

Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, March 5, 2015 3:58 PM

Nope, never heard of him.  Humboldt did some extraordinary things though.  I'm surprised we don't hear more about him in education.  I've definitely heard of Darwin though.  It's interesting what we decide is relevant or who is relevant in history.  

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A wide-angle view of fragile Earth

A wide-angle view of fragile Earth | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In this image-filled talk, Yann Arthus-Bertrand displays his three most recent projects on humanity and our habitat -- stunning aerial photographs in his series "The Earth From Above," personal interviews from around the globe featured in his web project "6 billion Others," and his soon-to-be-released movie, "Home," which documents human impact on the environment through breathtaking video.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I've linked galleries of the artistic, aerial photography of Yann Arthus-Bertrand several times before.  In this Ted Talk, you can hear what motivates his artistic vision and the global perspectives that he wants to bring to the fore.  You can also watch the 90-minute video 'Home' that he discusses in the talk here.    

 

Tags: images, art, worldwideTEDenvironment, video.

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Diane Johnson's curator insight, August 25, 2014 10:07 AM

Useful for Human Impact DCI!

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The Silk Road: Connecting the ancient world through trade

"With modern technology, a global exchange of goods and ideas can happen at the click of a button. But what about 2,000 years ago? Shannon Harris Castelo unfolds the history of the 5,000-mile Silk Road, a network of multiple routes that used the common language of commerce to connect the world's major settlements, thread by thread."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This TED-ED lesson was produced in part by an AP Human Geography teacher and the strands of geographic thought in this video are evident.  More geographers should make their own TED ED lessons; thanks for blazing the trail Shannon! 


Tags: TED, worldwide, transportation, globalization, diffusion, historical, and video.

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Amanda Morgan's comment, September 13, 2014 5:09 PM
Great video! Very cool to see how far the world has come in regards to globalization. Technology has allowed the people across the globe to immerse themselves in other cultures and good from other parts of the world.
Amanda Morgan's curator insight, September 18, 2014 10:51 AM

Great video! Very cool to see how far the world has come in regards to globalization. Technology has allowed the people across the globe to immerse themselves in other cultures and good from other parts of the world.

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The Geography of Language

"Over the course of human history, thousands of languages have developed from what was once a much smaller number. How did we end up with so many? And how do we keep track of them all? Alex Gendler explains how linguists group languages into language families, demonstrating how these linguistic trees give us crucial insights into the past."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This TED-ED lesson is a quick primer into the geographic context of linguistic change and variability that we find all around the world. 


Tags: language, TED, regions, folk cultures, toponyms, historical, culturediffusion.

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Woodstock School's curator insight, June 4, 2014 6:05 AM

A good teaching tool for explaining the diversity of languages.

Adilson Camacho's curator insight, June 12, 2014 9:38 PM

Geografia Cultural

Chris Plummer's curator insight, January 11, 2015 11:46 PM

Summary- This video explains how so many languages came to be and why. By the early existence of human there was a such smaller variety of languages. Tribes that spoke one language would often split in search of new recourses. Searching tribe would develop in many new different ways than the original tribe. new foods, land, and other elements created a radically different language than the original. 

 

Insight- In unit 3 we study language as a big element of out chapter. One key question in chapter 6 was why are languages distributed the way they are. It is obvious from the video that languages are distributed they way they are is because of the breaking up from people which forced people to develop differently thus creating a different language. As this process continues, there become more and more branches of a language family.  

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How architectural innovations migrate across borders

"As the world's cities undergo explosive growth, inequality is intensifying. Wealthy neighborhoods and impoverished slums grow side by side, the gap between them widening. In this eye-opening talk, architect Teddy Cruz asks us to rethink urban development from the bottom up. Sharing lessons from the slums of Tijuana, Cruz explores the creative intelligence of the city's residents and offers a fresh perspective on what we can learn from places of scarcity."

Seth Dixon's insight:

As a geographer native to the San Diego region with family on both sides of the border, I found this TED talk very compelling personally, but also rich in geographic themes (city planning, diffusion, governance of space, socioeconomic differences in land use patterns, etc.).  Relations across the border are economic, cultural and political in nature, and the merger of those varied interests have led to an uneven history of both cooperation and separation.  San Diego and Tijuana have more to offer each other than economic markets--the ideas born out of distinct socioeconomic and political contexts can be just what is needed on the other side of the border.


Tagsurban, unit 7 cities, housing, economic, sprawlneighborhood, borders. planning, urban ecology, densityplanning, TED

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James Hobson's curator insight, September 23, 2014 11:47 AM

(Mexico topic 2)
I think that elaborating upon border tensions from an artistic viewpoint (or any outside viewpoint for that matter) was an excellent idea. This allows a wider scope of inter-related issues to be examined, which might otherwise not be if left to a purely 'internal' perspective.
I approve of Cruz's way of referring to the Mexican-American border issues as more of a humanitarian issue and less of a physical-border problem. Similarly, I was impressed by his view of immigration as being not just of people, but also of knowledge and culture.
Lastly, I agree with Cruz's belief that there is a lot San Diego can learn from Tijuana in terms of sustainabililty and waste mitigation. My favorite example was that of the used tires as retaining walls: a simple yet environmentally-friendly solution to bettering land use. Ideas such as this have the potential to reduce the rate of urban sprawl (and amounts of waste in the process). Many other examples from his lecture, including the stacking of houses and businesses, reinforce this point as well. In this way, immigration earns a more positive connotation and shows how "twin cities", despite their political differences, can still benefit each other.

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A. R. Wallace: The Other Guy to Discover Natural Selection

This paper-puppet animation celebrates the life of Alfred Russel Wallace, who is co-credited with Charles Darwin for the theory of natural selection.  Read the story here: http://nyti.ms/1fhBbGw

Seth Dixon's insight:

Some of the greatest discoveries in biology began as spatial discoveries.  Alfred Russel Wallace made some amazing advances in biogeography and discovered the appropriately named Wallace Line


Tags: biogeography, environmentecology, historical.

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Kelsey McCartney's curator insight, December 10, 2013 9:40 PM

A sweet animation of the wonderful Alfred Russel Wallace, the oft unaknowledged simualtaneous discoverer of evolutionary mechanisms.

Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, December 17, 2014 9:13 PM

Wallace is one person you rarely hear about in the classroom, especially as a person who made a dent in science as a co-founder of natural selection. As someone who did his research in Brazil, Darwin, founder of the Natural Selection theory believed that Wallace may have come across one of his published manuscripts in order to make his claims be known. But one thing Darwin may have missed is how Wallace was reaffirming is scientific claims.