Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Teaching Geography: Workshop 8

Global Forces / Local Impact

Part 1: Guandong, China, and Southeast Asia
Part 2: Oregon and Pennsylvania

Maps Key maps for the region covered by this workshop >
Interactives Interactive materials that take you further into this region and the issues under discussion >

Program Overview: Global Forces/Local Impact

This workshop takes us to two very different geographic regions in order to investigate the relationship between the global economy and local ecology. In the first segment, we look to China and Southeast Asia in order to answer the question, "What are the human effects of an increasingly modern and global economy?" In the second half-hour, we focus on water as an element of local ecology in North America. There we explore controversies surrounding issues of conservation, allocation, and the unintended human effects on water resources.

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Part 1. Guangdong, China, and Southeast Asia: Booming Economies and Quality of Life

Director-Hardy Stow
-ABC, Australia

In this program, we focus on globalization in the context of the geographical region of Asia. First, our case study takes us to Guangdong, where we see the effects of modernization and globalization on China's population. Later we visit a classroom where students use economic-development measures to examine the disparity in quality of life in Southeast Asia.


  • Explain why optimum plant-location decisions in a commercial economy take into account labor costs, transportation costs, and market locations.
  • Analyze and evaluate issues related to the spatial distribution of economic activity.
  • Incorporate cooperative and inquiry learning to promote divergent thinking and understanding of complex geographic concepts.

Part 2. Oregon and Pennsylvania: Water Resources and Human Interaction

Director-Lance Wisniewski
-Cambridge Studios, USA

This workshop looks at the difficulties associated with limited water resources. First, our case study takes us to Oregon, where Native American fishing interests collide with farmers who divert water crucial to the salmon population for irrigating their potato crops. Later, we visit two Pennsylvania classes who take to the field to investigate the human effects on water resources in their communities.


  • Understand how resource use changes over time.
  • Evaluate the ways in which technology has expanded the human capability to modify the physical environment.
  • Describe the effects of physical and human changes on ecosystems.
  • Explain the use of firsthand observation, field research, and GIS to show how human actions modify the physical environment.


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