What students really gain from experiencing ‘living, breathing geography’

Committed to providing students with unforgettable learning opportunities, the Geography Department at The McAuley Catholic High School in Doncaster are advocates of learning outside the classroom.

This year alone, the school have embarked on a number of Geography Trips with specialist group tour operator Rayburn Tours, venturing to destinations such as the Bay of Naples and IcelandThese invaluable opportunities have enabled pupils to discover new skills, experience different cultures and be inspired by ‘living, breathing geography’.

Rebecca Quigley, Geography Teacher at McAuley, is passionate about teaching and inspiring a future generation of geographers. Dedicated to making a difference to her pupils’ learning and development, her ultimate aim as a Geography Teacher is:

“To instil a lifelong curiosity about the world in young people. I want my pupils to ask why, to be out in different countries and places and to see particular things and question why it’s there, why it looks like that.”

Whilst classroom learning undoubtedly provides the foundation of education, there is so much to be gained from supporting indoor learning with outdoor experiences. Students can observe how the world works in real life situations, adding depth to curriculum-based learning and bringing the subject alive as they encounter real world examples first-hand.

“One of the unique aspects of geography is that we have field work as part of our discipline. We can stand at the front of a classroom and talk about processes, theories and concepts, then actually take pupils to that particular place and see it in real life right in front of them. I think it not only consolidates but enhances their knowledge.”

Teachers are in the privileged position to not only teach, but also inspire future generations, shaping who they are and how they perceive the world around them. By providing students with exceptional learning opportunities both outside the classroom as well as in, students gain real benefits from a holistic education.

“I think it’s something that teachers should take advantage of and think about the fact that you’re in a position to take pupils to any country in the world, to expose them to new places, new people, new skills and give them memories that will last a lifetime.”

But why is it so critical to instil a sense of awe and wonder in young people about the world around them?

“It’s so important because so many of the world’s current and global issues boil down to geography and it’s the young people who sit in front of us who we’ll be turning to in order to solve some of these problems.”

Hear from Rebecca herself and her own experiences in the video interviews featured on the Rayburn Tours blog.

If you’ve been inspired by The McAuley Catholic High School to plan an international experience, Rayburn Tours would be delighted to hear from you.

Creating tailor-made tours for groups since 1965 and over 23,000 passengers each year, Rayburn Tours is passionate about inspiring young minds and creating quality international experiences.

Tel: 01332 347 828   Email: info@rayburntours.com   Visit: www.rayburntours.com