With soaring sand dunes, modern cities, spectacular mountains that reach up to 10,000 feet into the sky, warm hospitality, frankincense covered uplands, a coastline that stretches for more than 3,000km and a rich culture and heritage that goes back some 5,000 years, Oman is a geographical paradise.
In the very desert where, in the 1980s, the Royal Geographical Society undertook the most intensive research study of any arid environment, in late 2017, exactly 40 years after that research ended, Oman will open its first purpose-built centre for outdoor learning in the Sharqiya sands.
The Discovering Oman project aims to produce a series of innovative, online, curriculum-linked educational resources, created by teachers, for teachers, for use in schools in the UK, and Oman. The project will run in two phases:
• Winter 2017/18 – KS2 and KS3
• Winter 2018/19 – KS4 and A-level
Each winter will see a fully-funded, week-long fieldwork visit to Oman for innovative teachers, accompanied by an outstanding young geographer from their school to gather data to create engaging lesson plans. In 2017, one place will be awarded to an outstanding teacher and pupil from Key Stage 2, the second from Key Stage 3.
We are looking for creative and innovative geography teachers and outdoor practitioners, who will work with the Discovering Oman Team to fulfil the following aims:
• To inspire young geographers, and promote the relevance and excitement of geography, outdoor learning and field research.
• To raise awareness and promote a long-term understanding of Oman amongst young people in the UK through the creation of a series of on-line lesson plans.
Successful geography teachers and outdoor practitioners will win the opportunity to travel to Oman and take part in fieldwork at the Desert Outdoor Learning Centre, and in and other localities. The prize will include the opportunity for one young geographer, from the winning schools, to accompany their teacher and to take part in the learning experience within Oman, with the aim of creating a number of online lesson plans.
To design a 1-page layout that could be used consistently by the Project Team throughout the Discovering Oman series of resources. The 1-page layout should illustrate how the selected theme/topic/key question could be presented in an engaging, accessible and relevant way.
For each selected theme/topic/key question the resources should provide a comparison with that element of geography/geographical enquiry in the UK. You may use a topic/theme/key question of your choice to demonstrate how your design could be applied within the project.
This brief is deliberately open-ended to provide you with the maximum flexibility to showcase how you might work with the project team in a creative, original and dynamic way to engage as many young people as possible with the Discovering Oman project.
Closing date for entries is 6 May 2017.
• Click here to read about Mark’s epic crossing of the Empty Quarter.