This unit of work teaches resilience in the context of water and flooding
It delivers an understanding of awareness, preparedness and knowledge of what actions should be taken in the event of flooding; and of how changing physical and human processes bring about flooding in the first place. This unit nurtures vital skills for what might be termed 'environmental citizenship', giving life-long advice about the protection of homes - and the need to always keep an open and inquiring mind that can identify risk.
The first half of the unit deals with flood risk in the UK - a key aspect of life on these islands. Basic Environmental Agency rules for adults (be aware, be prepared, know how to act) are looked at. The causes of flooding are then examined, including human accidents (plumbing). As part of the work, a local risk assessment should be conducted for home or school, using the engaging technique of flood-depth analysis - working out what losses different levels of water could bring to a room or building.
The second half of the unit returns to the theme of resilience and explores in greater depth the steps that students' parents or guardians can take in protecting their homes from possible flood or storm damage. Flood kits and flood-proofing techniques are examined before moving on to think about flood warnings. A close look is taken here at how new digital technologies can help get warnings to people quickly. There are plenty of opportunities for role playing also, through thinking about vulnerable people, such as the hard-of-hearing, for whom text message warnings have been a real blessing. Greater cultural understanding is fostered.
The unit closes with a look at the interdependence that exists between different groups of people and businesses living on flood plains. Using the metaphor of 'river team players', students will think about how local groups can work together to try and build community resilience to flooding (becoming sensitive to the risks associated with some land-use changes). Attention is thus paid to the citizenship dimensions of flood management.
This is a busy, interactive and inspiring unit of work that teaches plenty of traditional physical geography yet also delivers vital knowledge to young learners that will well-equip them for life.
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