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Essential Resources for Geographic and Environmental Educators

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Issue Vol. 65, No. 2

Publication Date: September, 2014

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President's Message  

Page: 2

Author(s): Hughes, Shawn

I trust that everyone had a relaxing summer and took the opportunity to recharge for the upcoming school year. As teachers, we often become tired and run down as we approach the end of the school year. Admittedly, I’ve caught myself acquiring a less than positive attitude. Luckily, my involvement with OAGEE never ceases to provide some inspiration and motivation.

Attending the 2014 OAGEE Spring Conference in Thornbury was a great way to finish the school year. It’s hard not to smile while hiking the beautiful Niagara Escarpment, searching for fossils on the beach, and participating in a treetop tour. Our Spring Conference ended the school year with a bang.…or should I say ZIPLINE! Truth be told, I may not have actually been smiling on the zipline (my face had a frozen look of fear), but I did love the thrill!

This summer, teachers had the opportunity to attend the OTF 2014 Summer Institutes at the University of Toronto. OAGEE presented a 3 day workshop entitled The Revised Geography Curriculum: Using Inquiry, Concepts of Geographical Thinking and Spatial Technologies (Gr. 7-12), which provided a fantastic review of the new Geography curriculum (Grades 7-12). Teachers from Niagara to Kingston practiced easily implemented spatial technologies, field studies, and experiential classroom activities.

These amazing opportunities for effective (and entertaining) professional development were spearheaded by retired Geography teachers that continue to share a love of their subject. Mark Lowry and Sue Hotte have a depth of knowledge, energy, and enthusiasm that are both inspiring and somewhat intimidating. In retirement, they continue to model how to “Do and Think Good Geography” in a manner that we should all aspire to.

OAGEE relies heavily on the services of many of its longstanding members. Several have volunteered their time for over 30 years! They will leave a huge void in the organization when they decide to retire from OAGEE. New volunteers are essential to the survival of this organization. If you are not able to volunteer your time then please become a member and continue to support OAGEE.

OAGEE members will have an opportunity to network with some great teachers, and become re-energized and revitalized at the 2014 OAGEE Fall Conference @ Ryerson University on October 17th & 18th. Maybe we’ll have an early look at the new Senior Division Canadian & World Studies Curriculum?

Currently, the Canadian and World Studies Curriculum, Grades 11 and 12 is scheduled for implementation for Fall 2015. While its release is yet to be determined (as I write this in August), we are quite confident that the amount of hands-on, classroom-ready material that you will receive at the 2014 OAGEE Fall Conference will prove to be incredibly beneficial.

We enjoyed meeting some great people this Spring & Summer and we hope to see you again at the 2014 OAGEE Fall Conference @ Ryerson University on October 17th & 18th. We need your help in Ontario so that Geography can SURVIVE & THRIVE. Take an active role in your profession by becoming an OAGEE member today at

CGC1D: “Capture Toronto:The Google Earth Treasure Hunt  

Page: 5-8

Author(s): Chan, Sharon

This lesson is to be used in the Urban Studies unit. It is designed to be a simple and engaging activity that assesses student knowledge of the land use patterns in typical Canadian cities. Using Google Earth, students will be tasked with exploring the city of Toronto and correctly identifying and labeling the six types of urban land use.


  • E3.1 analyse the characteristics of different land uses and explain their spatial distribution in the community.
  • A1.6 evaluate and synthesize their findings to formulate conclusions and/or make judgements or predictions about the issues they are investigating.


One 70 minute in-class period (with option to complete and edit final copy for homework)

Comparing Northern Towns for Liveability  

Page: 9-10

Author(s): Ellis, Amanda; Canning, Chris

Specific Expectations

  • E1.1 use a variety of measurements (e.g., ecological footprint) to compare the impact on the natural environment of people in Canada and people in other countries.
  • E1.2 identify various ways in which communities in Canada dispose of their waste material, and describe potential environmental impacts of these methods.
  • E1.3 describe ways in which communities can improve their environmental sustainability.
  • E1.4 explain how human activities in their local region can have an impact on natural processes.
  • E3.2 describe the location, use, and importance of selected natural resources, including water resources, that are found in Canada, and compare the availability of these resources with their availability in the rest of the world.

CGC1D: Introduction to Sustainability and Water Resources  

Page: 11-16

Author(s): Pechlof, Alison

Lesson Overview

This activity is designed for the Grade 9 academic course (CGC1D) and fits into the introduction to sustainability unit. This should follow lessons on globalization as it makes connections back to previous topics and concepts related to globalization. This lesson is a visual, interactive, discussion and activity based lesson which is wrapped up with a small evaluation task. Students will learn the cost of bottled water and relate this back to sustainability and globalization. They will understand the importance of reusable bottles.


Overall Expectations

  • Describe how Canada’s diverse geography affects its economic, cultural, and environmental links to other countries.
  • Analyse connections between Canada and other countries.
  • Explain how global economic and environmental factors affect individual choices.
  • Explain how natural and human systems change over time and from place to place.

Specific Expectations

  • Explain how selected factors cause change in human and natural systems (eg. Technological developments, global warming).
  • Analyse the positive and negative effects on people and the environment of the manufacture, transportation to market, and consumption of selected products (eg. cars, clothing, tropical food products).
  • Predict the consequences of human activities on natural systems


Two 75-minute periods

CGG3O: Australian Aboriginal Tourism Website  

Page: 17-21

Author(s): Nixon, Brian

Lesson Overview

The Aboriginal Tourism Marketing assignment is designed for grade eleven open-level students to analyze and explain different types of tourism around the world, their marketing strategies, how the practice affects a local environment, as well as develop research and APA referencing skills.

It is the culminating task for a unit, which looks at Australia and surrounding regions, and is meant for students to show what they know and can do after completing the activities and assessments throughout this unit of study.

Specifically, the task asks students to research, reference, sketch, and finally design a web site, which helps market Aboriginal tourist destinations within Australia. This assessment combines all four-evaluation categories through; research (Knowledge and Understanding), APA bibliography (Thinking), the use of information (Communication) and finally a rough copy and final website design (Application).

This evaluation task hopes to engage students through the use of technology, as well as help students to meet the following expectations.

Curriculum Expectations

  • Analyze the impact of adventure travel and ecotourism on the indigenous people of a region;
  • Explain why it is important for tourists to respect the cultural and religious traditions of others;
  • Analyze some actual or potential effects of planning, policies, marketing, and advertising on travel and tourism patterns;
  • Use an accepted form of academic documentation (e.g., footnotes, endnotes, or author-date citations; bibliographies or reference lists) to acknowledge all information sources, including electronic sources.


Six 75-minute periods divided the following way;

  • Day 1: Research
  • Day 2: Research
  • Day 3: Rough Copy/ Sketch
  • Day 4: Design Process
  • Day 5: Design Process/ APA Bibliography
  • Day 6: Self and Peer Evaluation

Social Justice Issue: Food Security in Canada’s North?  

Page: 22-26

Author(s): Ellis, Amanda

The field of social justice is becoming more of an integral part in our Geography classrooms. This lesson is an investigation into the issues facing the Inuit in Canada’s north, and food security (or lack thereof). Food security is becoming THE topic in Nunavut for Inuit and non-Inuit alike.In the first exercise, students will be examining information from a variety of sources to determine whether food security exists in the north. In the second, students will be researching why families in the north don’t have access to adequate nutritional food.

Mark’s Web Picks #2  

Page: 27

Author(s): Lowry, Mark

Here are some interesting websites - some useful for lessons directly - others for background information.

Ontario Teachers’ Federation - 2014 Summer Institute  

Page: 28-29

Author(s): Hughes, Shawn

Putting the “Zip” in Geography! 2014 OAGEE Spring Conference in Thornbury  

Page: 30-31

Author(s): Hughes, Shawn