Saturday, 4 January 2014

Our Wonderful world- Geography at our fingertips!

Railway line in Summer

The coast line has been battered today. High winds and high tides have meant that the coast road where , only  days ago my son was practising his driving. is closed as the waves are crashing over the flood defenses onto the road. In our village the sea has crossed the railway line.crept up the fields and onto the road at Sanside meaning cancelled rail services, buses have been cancelled too as the roads have been flooded in parts.

This is  geography by osmosis. When you can actually see how the weather impacts on the enviroment it makes sense. I watched as a people carrier was towed up the hill this morning, branches sticking out it's radiator. Later in the day it was reported that a mother with her young family had tried to negotiate the coast road into the village and had ended up waist high in water fleeing the incoming tide with her children.

I googled flood-plain then Duddon estuary and one thing led to the other. I ended up following the source of the Duddon to where it reaches the Duddon estuary ,all  whilst sitting in the comfort of my home. Then I picked up a book my son received for Christmas called Earth and read how the Enviroment agency predict flooding.

On the other side of the Atlantic in Massachusets, the temperature is -30 degrees in places. Where my sister in law lives in New Hampshire the temperature is -23 degrees. They have been out skiing today in the sunshine and blue sky.Photos on Facebook reinforce a picture of what it's like to live in New Hampshire in Winter. My children are learning without being taught.

I've been cuddled up to escape the weather  reading  a book called The Snow Child. It's one of those books which makes you feel warm and comfortable over the Christmas holidays.Based in Alaska it has prompted me to read more about the largest state in the USA (and I don't even know where I learned that!). Coincidentally the story was based on a Russian Fairy tale retold by Arthur Ransome. author of Swallows and Amazons and someone who I already plan to read about as an author who based some of his stories in the Lake District..

And then there's the post cards we have received from Post crossing, so far we have received one from Belgium and one from Vancouver. I've just sent my latest to a young girl in Russia and am eagerly awaiting our next card from who knows where? They have prompted lots of discussion and debate around the tea table.

I'm just about to send a thank you email to a relative in Australia for her lovely Australian Calendar-we are surrounded by opportunities to learn about our fascinating world if only we care to look.


  1. I remember reading The Snow Child, in fact I actually have that Arthur Ransome book! Must go and dig it out! Geography is something that I have struggled to teach my son, he just doesn't have any interest - although, tbh he doesn't have much interest in anything at the moment! Rx

    1. We have moments like that too Rachel! What I do now is teach myself something and casually mention it in conversation.The other day a mum posted an article about a Japanese island which had grown rapidly following volcanic activity in December.From the air the shape looked like Snoopy.My son was so fascinated I found him reading the article! It doesn't work every time but then pupils don't listen to everything their teachers say either and that often isn't half as interesting as it isn't custom made for the individual!