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Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Singapore Population Policies

Excellent overview below created by D. Frossell. Click the image to see a larger version.




Saturday, 1 December 2012

How has recent weather affected our school?

Year 12 pupils had a lesson to collect and then contribute to a map of the effects of the recent bad weather on our school community.

The video below shows the storm patterns on the 24th and 25th which began to flood the river and saturate the soil. this was compounded by further rain on the 26th, 27th and 28th and then frost on the 30th and 1st of December.



The map below should interactively show the observations. Click on a placemark to see the observations and some images. There is more to come soon as well.
There is also one placemark 11km North West of the school in Harrold referring to the bridge being blocked. The rain clouds west of the school show weather data from the last two weeks.



View Larger Map

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Bedford Flooding Today


Friday, 23 November 2012

Support Outstanding Young Geographers

Some outstanding young men (and their teachers) are key players in this Movember campaign. Please take a look and support if you feel you would like to.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Yangtze Basin Management

H.Mok has produced an excellent study on the management of the Yangtze River Basin. It focusses on the social and environmental needs being met by the variety of schemes across the basin and shows many specific details and the use of symbols and colours to show location and key points. Click on the 2 images below to open them in new windows and see the case study.




Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Venice Floods Case Study

Year 12 D1 had the task to create a case study on the Venice floods in a single lesson. 4 methods were used: Prezi, Storify, Powerpoint and the classic: Word. The powerpoint group were the winners on this occasion as voted by MG and year 9 boys. The other 3 presentations were also very good but hey, win some and lose some!


Sunday, 18 November 2012

Morocco 2012 - Looking back by B.Nesseler

Located on the Northern African coastline, Morocco is one of the most well known Maghreb states offering breath-taking landscapes, a mixture of African and Arabic culture and a very exquisite cuisine. We mainly travelled to Morocco for the geographical aspect but were lucky enough to experience and take home a bit of everything. Arriving at the airport in Marrakech, I was expecting tropical weather conditions, however, it turned out that the shorts in my hand language were unnecessary ballast for that evening. The conditions were comfortably warm most of the time though, and coming from Great Britain, I guess most of us appreciated the sun when it was shining. Most people we met on our trip were very kind and warmly welcomed us, be it in the hotels or cafes. Eventually, we discovered this might have been associated on some occasions with the fact that we were easily discovered to be European tourists who may have some extra Dirhams left to spend on their superb souvenirs. Anyway, our guide and our bus drivers did a great job and safely led us from Marrakech down to Ouarzazate, then further into the desert and back again only showing us the best sides of Morocco, always being a helping hand. Geographically, the trip was useful for all students as all of us were able to engage with and look at aspects of the courses we study, followed by some evening Geography sessions. One of the highlights of the trip was surely the night out in the desert. It was an amazing experience to spend the night away from civilization in the Moroccan dunes next to camels. The market place in Marrakech is also a quite memorable image in our minds; unbelievably busy and exotic smells and shops around every corner. This was also a very good opportunity to go shopping and get some original Adidas sneakers for 5 pounds! Unfortunately, not everything went as well and fluidly as the waterfalls coming down the hills in the Atlas Mountains on our journey back from Ouarzazate to Marrakech after some rather excessive rainfalls during the day. There were some health issues from the first day on, even going on back home. These made some days of the trip for some people less comfortable but that may simply be considered to be part of the personal costs and risks you pay going to such a country. All in all, I would like to thank Mr Walker, Mr Strachan and Mr Gracie who organised and ran the Geography excursion and of course also everybody who joined us on the Moroccan adventure, looking back to a good time overseas with Bedford School.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Sustainability Explained

Another excellent video to promote discussion about sustainability. Are these the only aims of sustainability? Do they go too far? is this achievable?

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Great Extension on development and Population

Hans Rosling gives a 4 minute lesson on 200 years if history for 200 countries. Shows change in life expectancy along with wealth.

Monday, 5 November 2012

Happy birthday Mr Strachan

Cake courtesy of James Stroomer.

........and C'est La Vie courtesy of James Strode #betterlatethannever

Have a great day.

Monday, 22 October 2012

Amazing video of Japanese Earthquake


The video below gives an outstanding view of the buildup in terms of groundshaking to the Japanese earthquake of 2011 and the aftershocks that followed. It is worth watching through with sound as well. As the year goes on, the regularity of earthquakes in the area is made clear, as is the location of the boundaries with relation to Japan. However as March the 10th/11th commences, there is a huge release of energy that takes some months to subside.

This is an excellent visual representation of the scale and sudden onset of the event.


Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Guerrilla Geography at School Site - results

As published last week, open day at the school inspired a study by year 12 students to see whether the perceived status or value of cars influenced their location. When collecting the data, it had appeared that smarter cars located closer to the most visible and walked past locations on the school site. The location of the cars was mapped out in the field then transferred to a map in the classroom. The map includes a key where the colour denotes the car type. Note that the tabular form of the key allows an easy analysis at first glance of car types and their proximity to what was deemed to be the highest exposure site: immediately next to the South porch, the main entrance for the day.

Click on the images below to see them clearly and on a larger scale.


Fig 1: Map showing the locations of car types and the prime location (marked by an X)

The students have also graphed the number of each car located within 50 metre intervals of the prime location:

Fig 2: Bar graph of 50m wide radii of location and brands within them

So... do the cars that are better locate closer to important locations, and do those that are worse hid further away?

From the map, the closest cars to the prime location are Vauxhall, Audi and Lexus. The degree to which this can support any theory depends on which model. Certainly those spotted on the day appeared smarter. Within 50m there are also pockets of BMWs and VWs. So, though there are smarter cars close to the most visible location, there is no dominance by any particular brand.

The key on the map gives some more revealing information however, when the proportion of each car in each circular band is given. Audi, BMW, Lexus, Vauxhall and Mercedis all show a tendency to locate closer to the most visible location, whilst Ford, VW and Range Rover are skewed the other way.

The graph, displays some interesting trends too. The most notable bars are those for the Audis within 50m and the Fords between 150 and 200m. There are brands which  havn't located within the 150m-200m category at all: High range BMWs, Jaguar and Lexus, whilst some have not located within 50 metres: Honda and medium range BMWs.

Some data needs no analysis since it is likely that Jaguar and Porsche drivers will locate wherever they like!

Overall, the data probably supports the initial theory that drivers of nicer cars locate closer to the most visible locations, although it would appear that the visual study at first may have carried an emphasis on those cars which were more striking since the spread of cars is greater than was first anticipated. being able to investigate and quantify Geographical observations has been a very useful exercise, as has using different forms of presentation to highlight certain data more clearly. We are on the lookout for more small scale investigations around us...


What Causes Monsoons?

With the AS group looking at flooding causes and A2 at earth hazards, the video below on what causes India's monsoons may be useful:


Friday, 12 October 2012

Case Study on Rainforest Destruction

H.Guthrie has produced an excellent case study of the effects of the Tucurui Dam and Trans Amazonian Highway. Click on the images to make them larger and clearer:







Belo Monte Dam

A.Zhu and J.Dalton have done a very thorough presentation evaluating the potential consequences of the Belo Monte Dam project in the Amazon Rainforest. It contains plenty of specific information and is easy on the eye!



Tuesday, 9 October 2012

A2 self directed research - English Earthquakes and Vesuvius

As part of their global issues study, the A2 students have had time for their own research to satisfy questions they have had which relate to the tectonic hazards element of the course. Below are two excellent posts from the A2 global issues blog bsglobalissues.blogspot.co.uk

Read on below:


Earthquake In England?



I was wondering why there are occasional EQ's in the UK even though we are not close to a plate boundary, where science tells us EQ's should occur.

In my research I found that the key to it all lies in the African and Eurasion plates movement. These have created multiple fault lines as shown in this image - 


They occur more than we think - http://www.earthquakes.bgs.ac.uk/ - this shows the amount over the last 50 days with more detail within them.

Even the Daily Mail have got involved - http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1312608/UK-overdue-earthquake-kill-scores-people-moment.html - A slighlty exaggerated state of event but good detail nonetheless.

J.P.Strode


Mt.Vesuvius eruption 79 AD

For my research today, I tried to answer the question of why Pompeii was so badly affected by the eruption of Mt.Vesuvius in 79 AD. Pyroclastic flows swept the city and everything was buried under an extremely hot layer of ash. The city was preserved in time and there was one thing which astounded archaeologists the most when they rediscovered the city. This was the human remains which were found on the site. Although the exact number of people who died in the eruption is unknown, it is predicted that a large proportion of the city's population was killed. There are a few reasons which could explain why the eruption had such a big impact on the city's population. Firstly, although the locals were aware of the plumes of smoke rising from the volcano (a journal was found documenting the signs leading up to the eruption) no precautions were taken. They thought of it as the gods letting off steam therefore no actions were taken until it was too late. Like volcanic eruptions in the modern world, tremors and seismic activities were felt leading up to the eruption. They also chose to ignore this as they were unaware of what could come next. When the volcano finally erupted, the people were caught by surprise and didn't know how to react. Some chose to flee the city and it is likely these people survived as the only affect on them was ash deposits. Those who chose to hide in the safety of their homes were the ones killed. As the pyroclastic flow swept the city, the infrastructure was unable to withstand the speed and temperatures and thus people were buried and burned. The main reason why the eruption of Mt.Vesuvius was so devastating was the lack of awareness. In the modern world, this could still be the case particularly in LEDCs. If large volcanoes are not monitored, locals could be at an increased risk as precautions and responses will not be taken to ensure they are safe. This shows that raising awareness and having an efficient system of response is vital in reducing the impacts of natural hazards, even in the modern world.

K.S.Chan

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Guerrilla Geography on the school Site

Open day at school inspired an impromptu semi-guerrilla investigation.
It was noted that those cars which one would perceive to be more expensive or more coveted were parked in positions of greater prominence.

Year 12 boys have collected maps of the car locations which will be presented and analysed this week.




Prius located away from traffic around natural surroundings!




Most prominent position - front of school




Scho car park, a less desirable location???

Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, 5 October 2012

New Blog Layout Finished

We have finally finished updating our new blog layout.

Hopefully it looks better and is easier to use.

We now also have our feed to paper.li an online newspaper curated from useful social media outlets.

The upper sixth have also been maintaining various pieces on their own global issues blog.

Happy viewing - there will be new posts very soon.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Blog Under Refurbishment

Our blog is currently undergoing a change of image. Please bear with us whilst we fix it. It will be back looking better than ever in no time, but we appreciate your patience whilst we upgrade.

Whilst you wait, are you following us on twitter?

Search @bsgeography or see our twitter widget to the right 

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Follow NOAA Expedition to Ring of Fire Live

There is an excellent site set up where you can watch a live expedition to an undersea area of the ring of fire. There is plenty of video available and maps of the area.

There is a live video feed of the expedition as well.

Click the link below to see the video:

http://trap.it/#!traps/id/e4e03aa0-beef-4216-b937-2a304adec440/jump/6ArT7ibRd0064csiZaZs


Social Good Summit - get involved

The UN Social Good Summit starts today. There are some excellent ways to follow whats going on:

1) You can follow and watch it live online here:

2) You can follow it on twitter with the hashtag: #sgsGlobal

3) We have also set up a live twitter feed on this site, just click on 'Live News' to the right of this post to watch it update:

The video below is an excellent rundown of what it is about and how you could get involved.....



Monday, 17 September 2012

Causes of Kashmir Earthquake

Some excellent research took place today as 13D created a strong case study of the causes of the Kashmir Earthquake 2005.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Haiti Earthquake - excellent read

J.Taylor has written a genuinely very interesting case study on the causes of the Haiti Earthquake. Click the image to open it in a new tab to read.





Chile Earthquake 2010

S.Holland has produced this excellent study on the 2010 Chile Earthquake. Click the image to open it in a new tab and read it.




Friday, 14 September 2012

Excellent Study on the Causes of The Mount St Helen's eruption

J.Stroomer has produced this excellent study on the causes of the eruption at Mt St helens in 1980:

Mt. St. Helens is a composite volcano within the Cascade Range in southern Washington, approximately 50 miles northwest of Portland, Oregon. Though Mt. St. Helens is approximately 40,000-years old, it is considered a relatively young, active volcano. The Juan de Fuca plate is converging with the North American Plate. The lava forms as the oceanic crust is subducted under the continental crust at the convergent plate boundary.

The eruption on May 18th 1980 is the biggest that it has ever experienced. The build-up to the eruption was a two-month series of earthquakes and steam-venting episodes, caused by an inflowing of magma at shallow depth below the volcano that created a huge bulge on Mount St. Helens' north slope. This s called a cryptodome and can be seen on the images below, it makes a striking impact on the side of the volcano. The scientists and geologists studying the area say
that in the weeks leading up to the eruption it was expanding at a rate of 6ft a day in some places of the dome.


An earthquake, measuring at 4.2 on the Richter scale, at 8:32:17 a.m. caused the entire weakened north face to slide away, exposing the partly molten, gas rich rock in the volcano to lower pressure. This resulted in a landslide where more than half a cubic mile of material was released. This can be seen in the diagram below.




A lot of pressure had built up as this was the first eruption for 123 years. Although it was not without warning, on March 25th the seismographs started to climax at about noon reaching peak levels on the next two days, including one earthquake that measured 5.1 on the Richter scale. A total of 174 shocks, of magnitude 2.6 or greater, in the following two days. This then continued through April and May with 5 earthquakes above magnitude 4 or greater per day in April. This then increased to 8 per day the week before May 18th. There is a before and after shot below to show the impact on the landscape.


Useful Links:









Sunday, 9 September 2012

A2 Pupils running their own blog.

This year's upepr sixth are running blog this term on earth hazards as a means of engaging in the course and creating a useful resource for both themselves and others. they have started off with fundamental definitions for hazardous events and useful resources to support that. Keep an eye on it in the feeds to the right as it grows this term....

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Earthquake close to Costa Rica

There was an earthquake close to Costa Rica this afternoon. See what information you can find out about the event using some of the internet sources in this presentation and under the latest news tab to the right:

Monday, 3 September 2012

Amazing systems for local disaster recovery

This is a very impressive video about 2 sisters and their response to a Tornado in their home town. As you watch, consider the following questions: would their technology be appropriate in all areas of the globe? Will there always be donations/volunteers? What enabled them and others to respond successfully?

Sunday, 2 September 2012

UNDP Act Now campaign

The UNDP have a campaign on to increase preparedeness and spending on disasters to reduce their developmental effects and spending in the long run. Have a look at the video below which is part of their campaign but als o highlights the issues excellently for those in the upper sixth and year ten particularly this term.



Saturday, 25 August 2012

The fearless ferrymen of Dhaka's Buriganga river

The article extract below is from the BBC news website. Follow this link: http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-19349949 to read the full article which gives an excellent insight into the scale of poverty and hardship for some people in Bangladesh:

25 August 2012 Last updated at 01:30

Rush hour in the Bangladeshi capital sees thousands of Dhaka's commuters boarding small wooden boats to cross the busy waters of the Buriganga river, one of the most dangerous waterways on Earth, especially for the ferrymen.

"To do this you need all your strength and courage. If you lose your bravery then you are finished."

Ferryman Muhammed Abdul Loteef takes passengers and goods across a quarter-mile (400m) stretch of the Buriganga river every day.

It is hard physical work in temperatures of up to 40C - especially for a 70-year-old.

There are few bridges across the Buriganga river. For the 25,000 people who commute every day between the city centre and the residential areas on the other side, the sampans - small wooden boats, powered and steered by one oar - are a lifeline.

The ferrymen must negotiate huge gravel barges, cargo ships and passenger boats, which dominate the river.

"Every day here one or two boats capsize," says Loteef.

"Sometimes small boats go under the big boats and people die."

There are no emergency services here. If there is an accident, it is up to the other boatmen to come to the rescue.

One of Loteef's friend's boats was hit by a launch a few months ago, when it was fullly laden with nine passengers.

"Of them, I rescued eight," he said. "They found the (other) body three days later," he says.

"It is our duty to save our passengers. Sometimes we risk our lives to save passengers."

For that dedication, there is not much financial reward. It costs two taka (just over £0.01 or under $0.02) to cross the river.

To make enough money to support his family, Loteef has to make the crossing more than 60 times a day, and sometimes works into the night.



- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, 20 August 2012

Excellent A and AS level results

This year's sixth form exam candidates should be very proud of themselves. There have been many excellent grades achieved and the staff would like to wish all boys congratulations for seeing the fruits of their hard work.

A Level:
Out of 33 candidates, 26 had geography as their top or equal top grade. For 15 of these boys, their grade in Geography exceeded those in their other subjects.

AS Level:
Out of 27 candidates, 17 had Geography as their top or equal top grade. For 9 of these boys, their Geography grade exceeded those in their other subjects.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Some summer inspiration

Two videos below that may get you thinking about development in a new way or may just provide some summer inspiration:



Sunday, 22 July 2012

Storify on Beijing Floods

Some images and news sources to have a look at if you're interested in the flooding in Beijing this weekend.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Evaluation of the Olympic Games

Here is a year 9 pupil's evaluation of the Olympic Games. Well done C.Bloxham for your excellent work:


There are 4 main reasons why the Olympic Games are good, and there are 2 reasons why the Olympic Games are bad. The reasons why they are good are: jobs, urban regeneration, transport improvements and tourism. The bad reasons are: cost and overtaking of the TV.
One of the main reasons why the Olympic Games are happening in the East-end of London is for urban regeneration; this is a program of land redevelopment in areas of moderate to high density urban land use. This is good for London and Britain, because in these areas there are higher crime rates, and lower life expectancy. Bringing up the East-end of London to match the West-end is bringing London up to be a strong capital. It would also make London a better place to visit, like New York.
Transport has made a massive improvement, helping make London’s travel more efficient with better quality. These improvements include: channel tunnel shuttle link from Stratford to Kings Cross, 45% capacity of Jubilee line, extensions to the DLR and £1bn improvement to London East line. These improvements are not only good for the games, but they are also a long term improvement for the future as well.
Another reason why the Olympic Games are good is the tourism. Because of the Olympic Games London has grown in profile. People would know about London more that before. The tourism will be higher during and after the Olympic Games than before it. This would lead to an increase of money and the Olympic organising committee hope that it would pay back any loss that they have conceded
My final reason why the Olympics are good is because of the Jobs. This point is mainly good but it is also quite bad. With the building and the working of the Olympic Games, jobs are produced, which is great for the unemployed people, although it is only a temporary job, and they will soon be unemployed again.
My first reason why it is bad is because of the cost. It is predicted that the total cost of staging the Games will be £2.375bn. This causes a rise in our taxes. This causes people who were originally not bothered about the Olympics to really not like it, and could cause homelessness to people who couldn’t even afford it before. Although they think that they will be able to gain back the money by tourism, I think it is highly unlikely.
Also my final reason for the Olympics being a bad reason is the taking over of the T.V. Although this may not seem important, it makes people not like the Olympics, and people who may watch a programme, may not want the programme to be cut for the Olympics.
All of these reasons are valid, and either way could make a good argument. But I think the Olympics are good because all the reasons for the Olympic Games are more environmental and the reasons against are more personal.

For my research I used this website: http://olympics.pthimon.co.uk/index2.htm

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Amazing Video and images of UK and USA extreme weather

Monday, 18 June 2012

A Level Fieldtrip

The first A level fieldtrip of this year happened today in Bedford. The aim is to compare Bedford to Bid Rent theory in preparation for the Investigations paper in January.

You can follow what happened on the boys' excellent blog by following the link at the top of this page.

There was also a competition for the best Geographical Twitter update and blog post.

J.Li wins the best blog post for rightly identifying the importance of physical geography case studies in close proximity to universities.

The best 3 tweets are shown below with J.Stroomer coming out as the winner in recognition of his all important live pedestrian count update. Outstanding Geography caught in the moment.

3rd Place - for sheer enthusiasm:

Identifying the route before bring on Bid-rent!


2nd Place - for always thinking about the exam requirements:
obstruction? Marks? Yes please

1st Place:

The ped count was perilously close to 100 (99 in fact) after passing the faces, we have now dropped dramatically, a measly 24


Friday, 15 June 2012

Half a month's rainfall in just TWO days?

There are forecasts that the depression below could be bringing nearly 2 inches of rain to the UK this weekend. Be prepared that there may be flooding in different parts of the UK as there was in Wales last weekend.


The environment agency have an excellent flood warning system set up:

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

ArcGIS - Latest Practise

Mr Rees has been experimenting with making ArcGIS online a useful tool for presentation of fieldwork and data. Have a go with the interactive map below and consider how you could use it for your project:

Thursday, 7 June 2012

You can have YOUR say at Rio +20


As the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development approaches next week, you can have your say about what you want to see happen.

Visit the site below to view the 100 recommendations made and to vote on which you would like to see implemented.





Rio +20 Earth Summit starting next week...

The Rio earth summit next week could have a huge impact on our future. You can get acquainted with it using the Storify below as a portal. We will follow it on this blog during next week so come back and see it...

Sunday, 3 June 2012

New Research Links Added

You can now search all of our twitter hashtags by subject by clicking on the research Tab at the top of this page. The link to the twitter search is at the top of that page.

We have also added some excellent blogs and websites to that Tab, both specialist and general.

If you are a twitter user, you can look at our latest tweets under our username: @BSgeography, or search our tweets using #bs followed by any geographical topic.

Climatic hazards, Sustainability and Tectonics are the most developed at present.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Northern Italy Earthquake - 20/05/2012

4th Form Student published in the Geographical Times

Well done to R Salvesen for a good accomplishment. Lets hope more boys can follow your example.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Case Study on oil extraction in the Niger Delta

Monday, 14 May 2012

Interesting Video on the 'Anthropocene' to stimulate debate



This is a helpful introduction to the reasons behind our world popualtion and technological growth and the problems we may face in the future.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Excellent Swanage Map

Below is an excellent map of the Isle of Purbeck made by Tom Lousada. Underneath he details how he created it. This is a very useful set of skills to practise in general, but they will be particularly helpful for writing up fieldwork projects.
(To see the map in a larger format, just click on it)



Slide Background:
The slide background was a screenshot taken off Google Earth. The Google Earth Image had been created by Pinpointing various geological features; i.e. Durdle Door, using the Pinpoint button on the top bar.
The layers of rock geology were created by drawing a polygon over the areas of each rock type. The data for this was taken from the booklet we received before beginning the task. These polygons were then made only 60% opaque and pinned to the ground so that we could see the land underneath.
Making sure only the Pins and the polygons were ticked on the side bar, the screen was then print screened and pasted into Paint where it was then cropped and saved as an image. A PowerPoint document was then opened up and the layout changed to blank. By right-clicking on the slide, format background was selected and the Google Earth picture was selected from a file. The edges were then edited so that the picture was 0 on every side.

Pictures on slide:
After finding pictures of each geological feature on Google, they were all pasted onto the document. Making sure that they were all selected as ‘tight’ in the text wrapping pane, they were spread evenly around the document, avoiding the top and bottom right hand corners, with each picture near to its corresponding Pinpoint.
Arrows were then inserted from the pictures to their Pinpoints and the colour changed so that they could be easily seen against the background.

Title and Key:The title and key were both created by inserting a textbox into the top and bottom right-hand corners and then changing the ‘fill’ of the textbox to white. At the top, the title was written in bold and underlined in a large font, while underneath was a brief summary of what the slide showed and how they were formed. At the bottom, a key was placed describing the colours of the geology on the background in terms of what rock type they were (and whether they were more or less resistant).

By Tom Lousada

Case Study on OK Jamaica Shoes by J.Sheridan

This article was a winner in Ms Sypropoulos' 4th form class competition for the best case study.

Ok Jamaica shoes
(Case study)

A T.N.C (Trans National Corporation) is a company which operates in many different countries in the world.
Some jobs that are done by the workers are cutting and butchering which is done at the first stage where they slaughter and take the skins off the cows in a place called a slaughter house/ abattoir. The next stage is where they turn the cow skin to leather with the use of chemicals, this job is call tannery. The next and last stage of making the shoes is where in the OK Jamaica shoes factory they put the shoe together ( 800 pairs per day) with 100 Ethiopian workers doing the jobs of sewing, cutting and sticking. After that they simply export the shoes to more economically developed countries for example the U.S.A, Europe and some African countries.
The problems faced by the workers from killing the cow to putting the shoe together is that they have extremely low pay for the amount of hours that they work. For example, a worker who works at OK Jamaica shoe factory earns £14 per month, which is 50p per day whilst their monthly house rent is £10…so overall their profit after all that hard work is £4 per month, which is 14p per day!...
Other problems faced are that in the slaughter house/abattoir the workers who dissect the cows are wearing no gloves. So if a worker cuts himself doing something and he touches the inside of the animal, then he risks getting infected. But if they only get £4 he will not be able to afford medical treatment, and if he took time off work he would not get paid at all. In the jobs in the first stage such as where you have to skin the cow, the rooms are very hot and the work is very physical, and to replace that energy used or salt lost you have to eat energy rich food or any food. But, if you are on a very tight budget and can’t afford much food, you will have no energy in you. Not eating food will weaken your immune system and therefore you coul potentially catch a virus.
The only good points about working in a type of factory like OK Jamaica shoes is that it’s better than nothing, and at least you’re getting regular income.

By J.Sheridan

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

The Pros and Cons of Globalisation

Please take the time to read this fantastic essay on the pros and cons of Globalisation as perceived by Robert Salvesen in Year 9 :



Globalisation refers to the growing relationships between people and culture, and the growing economic independence of countries worldwide. This economic growth could be through trade, technology, communications and media.
When our teacher stood before us and proudly stated that he was the fashion icon that we all should look to everybody was laughing. However minutes later when he showed us the negative aspects to globalisation in the fashion industry no-one was laughing. Behind every logo in the world there are positives and negatives. Through this document I will be assessing the pros and cons of globalisation.
If you take a pair of jeans and trace the manufacturing pathway it really enforces how globalisation has affected most of the products we buy today. The cotton for the jeans will have been made in Africa, the polyester thread; Japan and the metal components; Europe. So when you buy a pair of jeans from a high street stores the components will have been brought from all over the globe and the product itself is an example of globalisation.
If you think back to the last time you bought something special. The happiness felt when your new pair of tennis shoes arrives and the excitement as you hold them in your hands. However what most people don’t realise is that your hands are not the first to touch them. We do not think of the little hands that have worked day and night to achieve the end product. By little I do not mean minor parts I mean children. Child labour is in my opinion the most severe negative that has been brought about by globalisation. Many worldwide companies are fixated with profit. They do not consider the wellbeing of their workers in other countries.  Companies employ children for many reasons. Children do not know the rights and wrongs of the working world so can be exploited easily. With an adult who might have had previous jobs it would be harder to exploit them with long hours and minor pay. If you have a child working in a cotton factory from the age of 5, living away from his parents then by the age of 6 or 7 the work which they do will just be the norm. All of this means that the owners of these factories can work these children for long hours and pay them very little in order to gain as much turnover as possible when selling to companies.  A few years ago UNICEF carried out research in which they found that 250 million children were involved in child labour, and being exploited by the factories in which they were working as a result in globalisation. 32% of children in Africa are involved in child labour and 22% of children in Asia.
Many children in Asia work spinning cotton into thread. They first have to gather the cotton together. They carry huge masses of cotton and spend there time working in sweltering conditions.  However the temperature can quickly drop and those who have worked throughout the day may be vulnerable to illnesses such as pneumonia.  The actual spinning occurs on machines which have no guards or safety mechanisms which leave young children open to severe injuries.  The atmosphere is full of just and dirt and many children leave work with sever lung conditions which shortens their lives dramatically.

In my opinion globalisation has definitely moved our technology and product range into the 21st century but it seems that is has had no effect on the methods of work. If technology can evolve from the Victorian era where there were no televisions or iPods to what we see before us today than there should be no reason why we should not strive to stop the children who are exploited daily, have no education and no hope in their lives and try to give the children of the future a better chance in life where ever they are in the world.                 






By looking at the diagram above we can see that the most child labour occurs in Africa. Once again looking at the manufacturing pathway of a pair of jeans we see that all the raw materials such as cotton come from Africa. These are the jobs which require a lot of work but can be done by children. As a result of Globalisation we can see that the demand for cotton has increased and this has also pushed up the figures of child labour.

However there are positives to globalisation. The occurrence of globalisation allows us to communicate faster via email, mobile messaging and the internet. As a result we are all now connected to each other and able to contact someone on the other side of the world which previously was never possible.  This increase in means and accessibility of communication is one positive effect of globalisation. It is now possible to order clothing from China and receive it within a week of placing that order. Before globalisation this would not have been possible. The world is shrinking and soon our Earth will just become a super computer. We all are already linked into this computer and soon books and paper will not be necessary.  The amount of information shared on the internet every hour in 2012 is more than the total amount shared in the whole of 2003. This is evidence that our world is shrinking and everyone is becoming closer and closer. This ability to learn more, share more and connect more with people from all over the world is in effect the result of globalisation. Globalisation will keep going until we all are touching. The song “We’ve got the whole world in our hands” describes the future in my opinion. Soon we will have the whole world at our fingertips. This is the positive side to globalisation.
To conclude I think that Globalisation is an extremely positive occurrence to anyone living in an MEDC. We feel the positive aspects of this growth and development. We can now contact others, make a phone call to Australia and order products from the U.S.A. However what we do not feel is the knock on effect of this development. We do not feel the negative hard hitting truths that the citizens and children of LEDC’s feel. I think that we should take advantage of globalisation and learn to adapt to the future technology but we should also see this global development as an opportunity to help and bring the LEDC’s into the future as well. We do have the whole world in our hands. So why don’t we lend that hand to the children of the LEDC’s.

Robert Salvesen


Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Ecotourism in Tanzania

Excellent ecotourism case study by M.Holroyd and A.Zair. Plenty of benefits for the local population and reasons why it is sustainable.



Saturday, 24 March 2012

Introduction to GCSE Geography for 4th Formers

Population Revision

Try these case studies of youthful populations made by Tom Hall (Honduras) and Guy Davis (Kenya)