In the OCR Geography team we have been very excited about the first round of ‘First Teach’ CPD events for our new 2016 qualifications, which are taking place all across the country over the next couple of months. Why? Because it is one thing working hard at specifications which we hope teachers will want to teach and will help enthuse a passion for Geography in students; it is another thing entirely to meet teachers who are planning to teach the course (or have already started!) and help them understand the specification content better.
Over the last week or so, I have been to Manchester for the first of our free GCSE Geography B (Geography for Enquiring Minds) and AS and A Level Geography ‘First Teach’ events, as well as the first free GCSE Geography A (Geographical Themes) event in London. It was fantastic to meet so many teachers who are at various stages of engaging with our new specifications, from initial planning through to already teaching, and the range of questions they are facing. There were some fantastic questions and lots of discussions as a result (especially on fieldwork at GCSE and the independent investigation at A Level!).
All the events followed a similar format with the morning consisting of a background to the national changes and what this has meant for Geography in schools and our specifications, before we looked at a wide ranges of resources (all free so you can take them away) and teaching ideas for different elements of the specification. The afternoons focused on fieldwork and geographical skills, including the Independent Investigation at A level, and how you can make the most of teaching these key areas of geography, as well as looking at the assessment model and mark schemes.
The events have been really positive so far and I really enjoyed the chance to engage with teachers over the specifications, fieldwork and assessments which we have been working on. I would like to thank everyone for attending and for their lovely feedback on the courses so far – it is great that you have been enjoying them as much and engaging throughout the day.
Abi, Shelley and I would love to make every event (we would do if we could!) but unfortunately work commitments mean we cannot. We are however at the end of an email and we are happy to answer any enquiries teachers have firstname.lastname@example.org We do have a selection of wonderful and talented presenters who are sharing their expertise and experience in every session and helping to bring the specifications to life. Our ‘7 city tour’ is off and running with events to come this Autumn in London, Manchester, Newcastle, Exeter, Southampton, Nottingham and Birmingham, as well as all the events coming back to each city in the summer. The events are all free and so why not book onto one and learn a bit more about all the opportunities there are with our new specifications?
New reformed first teaching 2016: OCR Preparing to teach GCSE (9-1) Geography A Geographical Themes
New reformed first teaching 2016: OCR GCSE (9-1) Geography B: Geography for Enquiring Minds
New reformed first teaching 2016: OCR Geography (H081/H481): Preparing to teach OCR AS and A Level Geography