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GCSE Geography Field Trip to Dorset

Olivia Skevington
GCSE Geography Field Trip to Dorset

One of the best reasons to take GCSE Geography is the opportunity to venture out into the wider world to test theories, models and hypotheses. 55 year 10 BMS students have seen their classroom work come to life on their fieldwork trip to Dorset last week. We spent three days working with the incredibly accommodating and intelligent staff at Leeson House investigating three enquiry questions.

  1. How does the exposure of a beach to the prevailing wind affect the beach profile and the sediment size and shape?
  2. How do different abiotic and biotic factors change along a typical sand dune transect?
  3. What impacts do different methods of coastal management have on the coastal processes and communities in Swanage Bay?

Before stepping out of the classroom, students carried out risk assessments and learned about the wider geographical, geological and historical context of this part of the world. In order to be able to test hypotheses and come to conclusions, students carried out a wide range of primary data collection methods. From randomized sampling to select pebbles to measure at different beaches, to systematic sampling of vegetation types and cover across sand dunes, the students really experienced the process of carrying out an investigation. After many hours in the sunshine at different beaches, we returned to Leeson House for a delicious dinner before heading into the classroom for an evening session. Here, students presented their data using approaches such as compound bar graphs and box and whisker plots. Initial conclusions have been made about each of  our enquiry questions, but we certainly have a lot of food for thought now we are all safely back at Bushey Meads School.

Zak said “This trip has actually been a lot better than I thought it would be.”

Miss Knight, Psychology teacher said “I learned so much!”

Charlotte, Leeson House Staff said “For a really big group, they are moving quickly and some of the work groups are being more thorough than A Level groups that I have lead.”

Holly “It was alright, I liked the weather and the beaches!”

Habib said, “The weather was nice and it was a good experience, some people might not have had an experience like that before.”

Alice said, “It was very visual, you could understand it better than just looking at it in the book.”

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