The Geography Department at the Nelson Mandela School
Geographical and geoscientific phenomena and processes such as globalisation, climate change, flood disasters, migration or resource conflicts are increasingly shaping our lives on earth.
Through the interaction of natural geographic conditions and human activities, these processes acquire a special dynamic and pose challenges that require responsible and sustainable action.
The subject of geography has the special potential to create a link between natural science and social science education. Natural science helps to understand natural processes. The social science aspect enables the classification of social, political and economic events, structures and processes.
The aim of geography lessons at the Nelson Mandela School is, therefore, to recognise the interactions of nature and society in selected spatial examples, to understand structures, processes and problems and to think of sustainable solutions to problems. Geography lessons combine both thematic and regional geographic approaches. Clarity and topicality play a decisive role in this, which are taken up by teaching examples from the students' living environment or current case studies from the media. The use of modern media in lessons increases the attractiveness of the subject. Excursions and visits to extracurricular places of learning make the lessons particularly true to life and make it possible to link theory and practice, to act independently and to bring in one's own experiences and adventures.
Geography is part of the integrated Social Sciences subject called SocS in Year 7 at NMS, which is taught in English. From Year 8 onwards, Geography is an independent subject and is taught for two hours in Year 8 and one hour each in Years 9 & 10. The course is taught in German and English.
The subject areas in the Middle School include topics of central concern for our planet, with the focus in Year 7 on global disparities (contrast between poverty and wealth) in the first half of the year. In the 2nd half-year, this is followed by an investigation of global migration flows and population development..
The focus of Year 8 is primarily on the natural differences (climate zones, vegetation zones) on our planet and the examination of exemplary risk areas (Pacific Ring of Fire, flood hazards, desertification, etc.). In doing so, the findings from Year 7 are linked and re-evaluated. A visit to the Biosphere Potsdam or the Botanical Garden Berlin is a practical way to explore the diversity of the earth.
The main global problems of the coming decades, such as climate change, resource exploitation, globalisation, will increasingly occupy our students in Year 9/10 with their respective causes, regional and global consequences, but also sustainable solutions.
In Year 10, they will also deal with the European Union, i.e. its history, significance and current problems and perspectives in the context of global challenges. The visit to the Erlebnis Europa-Haus, Berlin, makes the European issue even more tangible for the pupils.