- Slides: 22
Sport and Geography Image of football globe removed for copyright reasons Steven Chubb University of Cumbria
Sport – does it matter? Football images removed for copyright reasons
What sport is played here? Where is this?
• Answer: Cricket - Sher-e-Bangla Stadium, Bangladesh • Sport ‘ gives Geography teachers an opportunity…to challenge negative stereotypical images and to help students reconstruct their perceptions’ (Roberts, 2006; 61)
Sporting teams and nicknames • • • Match the team to the name: The Hatters The Shrimps The Blades The Pilgrims The Cobblers The Steelers The Silkmen The Glovers Morecambe Sheffield Plymouth Pittsburgh Macclesfield Luton Yeovil Northampton • Do sporting nicknames have any geographical consequence?
These flags are linked to a major sporting event of 2007 – which one? Which is the odd flag out? Why?
Answer: Teams competing in 2007 Cricket World Cup • • • Odd one out – various possibilities: The Netherlands West Indies England, Scotland Links to globalisation, diffusion, colonialism, nature of states/nations
Sport and Geography – advocates • ‘Sport is an autobiographical slice of the larger world we occupy…like work, family, education and the arts, sport is integral to our social and cultural structure’ (Raitz, 1995; 9) • ‘The traditional neglect of sports by geographers is paradoxical… sport is a major aspect of economic, social and political life’ (Bale, 2003, 2) • ‘Sport is closely linked to the global political economy and international state system. (It) is also closely related to cultural, racial, ethnic and gender identity. Sport is becoming recognized as an important means by which fundamental geographical concepts can be taught at various educational levels’ (De Chano and Shelley, 2004, 185)
Potential for sport in school geography • ‘Major sporting events offer significant opportunities for learning to take place in geography…the level of interest shown by the students is often high…sporting events provide excellent examples of geography in action. This in turn enables teachers to demonstrate the relevance and importance of geography in the modern world. ’ (Rawding, 1999, 33) • ‘Sustainability is a concept that students tend to find either rather vague or difficult’. Using sport to teach the concept (ie Sydney Olympics, 2000) can make some concrete sense of the more abstract aspects. (Digby, 2007; 76)
Sport and the new KS 3 curriculum • • • Key concepts – Place Space Scale Interdependence Physical and Human processes Environmental interaction and sustainability Cultural understanding and diversity To what extent can sport contribute?
Sport and Geography – initial questions • With increasing awareness of the possibilities and new resources, are more schools using sport as a resource to teach Geography at KS 3? • If so, what are the reasons for using sport? • Which sports are they using? Why? • Is it a gimmick or are they ‘taking it seriously? ’ • Why might this topic not be used? • How do pupils respond to this area of Geography?
Sport and Geography in school – what is the local situation? • Postal survey of partnership schools in Cumbria, Lancashire and North Yorkshire. • 25 schools responded (16 L, 4 C, 5 unknown) 20 felt they had given time to study World Cup 2006 15 felt they included some ‘sport geography’ at KS 3 11 mentioned Geog. 1 as key resource 8 used/referred to QCA So. W module ‘World Sport’ • No obvious link with school type – perhaps Ho. D is the key influence? • Football most popular example – lack of resources for other sports?
Prominence of football? • • Teacher interest Pupil interest Resource availability Topical (World Cup) Links to local team (largely Blackburn Rovers) Global sport Good for sense of place development
Why teach about the World Cup? • Skills, sense of place, country focus, location of places within Germany, data analysis, links between GNP/development and success, fair -trade issues, global inequality issues, stadium location. • Links to scale
General pupil feedback (noted by staff) Generally positive and engaged. ‘Can’t wait to start that unit’ Gender feedback – 5 schools noted boys are more enthusiastic, 1 noted girls prefer Olympics, boys World Cup • 1 school noted girls of Asian heritage appeared to show least interest. Other schools noticed no differences in feedback from different ethnic groups or the samples were too small. • • •
Positive feedback… • • ‘It is relevant and can motivate’ ‘Can be a strong motivator to some disaffected pupils’ ‘Pupils enjoy it as they have some existing knowledge…. doesn’t seem like Geography’ ‘Girls enjoy it and boys don’t think it is Geography’ ‘Very engaged – even the girls’ ‘Very good – great on place knowledge’ ‘Very positive from 90% but there is always 10% who hate football’ ‘Generally positive but no more than for anything else. Some pupils clearly indifferent to football’
Less positive feedback… Reasons given for not using QCA World Sport module: • ‘Not enough curriculum time to fit everything in’ (x 4) • ‘Not aware of its existence’ (x 2) • Sport. . . ‘not of great interest to some teaching staff’ • ‘Reluctant…as it is a girl’s school’ Reasons given for no curricular time allocated to World Cup 2006: • No room in the curriculum (x 3) Against further incorporation of sport in future: • ‘Over reliance on sport threatens the broader identity of Geography’ • ‘GCSE content already full’ • ‘Too many other topics that deserve study’ • ‘Interesting but a limited amount of time is available’
• • Thoughts so far and future directions Value of using sport as way of engaging pupils in geography at KS 3 seems to be increasingly recognised in schools, however: Over-reliance on football as an example – off-putting to some? Reservations amongst some pupils and staff Use of major events as a ‘treat’ – ‘doesn’t seem like geography’. Still a ‘gimmick’? Curriculum development ideas and resources needed? How can sport contribute to future curriculum change at KS 3/4? Next step - detailed interviews with selected departments and with pupils in the summer term. Olympics focus?
Final thoughts… This ‘short unit of work on the World Cup…will go some way to keeping the year 9 students interested for a few months. Football is, of course, just a tool’ (Hudd, 2006; 57) ‘When I started studying sport I tended to use it to teach geography. I found that allusions to sport, a pervasive feature of modern society, helped motivate my students and make my geography classes more interesting. I realise now that I was tending to devalue sport by reducing it to the level of a teaching gimmick. ’ (Bale, 1989; cited in 2003 edition, xi)
References • • • • Bale, J (2000) Sportscapes Sheffield: G. A. publications Bale, J (2003) Sports Geography (2 nd edition) London: Routledge Cloke, P. et al. (1999) Introducing Human Geography London: Arnold Dear, M (1988) ‘The Post-modern challenge: reconstructing human geography’, TIBG, vol. 13, no. 3, p. 262 De Chano, L & Shelley, F (2004) ‘Using sports to teach geography’, Journal of Geography, vol. 103, no. 5, p. 185 Digby, B (2007) ‘Teaching about the Olympics’, Teaching Geography, 32, 2, p. 73 Holloway, S. et al. (eds) (2003) Key Concepts in Geography London: Sage Hudd, B (2006) ‘Who will win the 2006 World Cup? ’, Teaching Geography, vol. 31, no. 2, p. 57 Jackson, P (2006) ‘Thinking Geographically’. Geography, Autumn 2006, p. 199 Johnston, R et al. (eds. ) (1994) Dictionary of Human Geography (3 rd edition) Oxford: Blackwell Rawding, C (1999) ‘World Cup Geography’, Teaching Geography, vol. 24, no. 1, p. 30 Roberts, M (2006) ‘World Cup Challenge’, Teaching Geography, vol. 31, no. 2, p. 60 Scott, J & Simpson-Housley, P. (1989) ‘Relativizing the relativizers: on the post-modern challenge to human geography’, TIBG, vol. 14, no. 2, p. 231