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Volume 23 Number 1

Investigating Children’s Field Trip Experiences Through Sketch Maps

Shadi Maleki, Emily Warren, Ronald R. Hagelman III, Aspen Navarro & Miranda Wait

Research related to the ways in which children learn, perceive, and engage with nature remains ongoing, but there is a need for new methods of investigation and analysis into this important topic. This study examines children’s representations of nature through the examination of maps drawn by 1st-8th grade students following a school-sanctioned field trip at the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment at Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas. Data were collected through an interactive process which encouraged children to observe nature through different activities organized in the context of field trips. At the end of the field trip, participants drew a map of their experience and explained the elements included in their maps. Over 700 maps were analysed to assess students’ representations of their field trip experiences as well as their cartographic skills. Overall, this study found that children have positive emotions to nature and natural elements. Also, using sketch maps to explore students’ field trip experiences offers a robust education strategy and can render valuable quantitative data and qualitative information on children’s outdoor experiences and cartographic skills.

Maleki et al_23.1 (PDF, 1.33MB)

The Influence of Collaboration on Students’ Learning Approaches in a Geography Task

Sojung Huh, Jongwon Lee & Injeong Jo

Learning approaches are the ways students tackle and address the learning tasks, which are categorized by deep and surface components. The aim of this study is to illuminate the impact of collaboration on students’ learning approaches while executing a geographic task. Students’ learning approaches were compared between students working individually and those working in small groups via discourse analysis. The findings show that working in small groups is effective when utilizing the deep learning approach. Collaboration supports small groups becoming more active while executing tasks and selecting learning strategies and developing positive attitudes toward the task.

Huh et al_23.1 (PDF, 493KB)