Crete Field Trip

The field trip to Crete (June 16-23rd 2009) involved three staff (Dr Alan Howard, Richard Tegg, Ken Beard) and 28 students registered for the degree in Human and Physical Geography at the University of Reading.

We were based in the village of Chora Sfakion in the Sfakia region of south west Crete. Fieldwork was undertaken in the village, at Loutro and in the Samaria Gorge.

Daytime temperatures ranged from 28 to 36 degrees and, whilst not in the sea, work was undertaken to model the extent and impact of a major flood in December 2000 in the Ilingas Gorge and the potential impact of tourist development on society in this area (Sfakia remains largely untouched by the mass tourism associated with northern Crete).

Group Photo - 22/6/2009, Chora Sfakion

Group Photo - 22/6/2009, Chora Sfakion

 During the field trip our students made use of various Web 2.0 technologies in order to produce group blogs and videos of their experiences. These were completed in the field utilising ubiquitous wireless internet access available in the village of Chora Sfakion and the mini Dell laptops we provided. The students did an excellent job and the process of writing daily entries on their group blogs (hosted on WordPress.com) enabled them to reflect upon the educational experiences they encountered. The blogs have been compiled here:

http://www.cretefieldtrip.com/sfakia/

where you will also find all the light hearted videos each group produced while in the field. A random choice of video is displayed here:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqwB-uqkc-w&w=425&h=344]

Crete Field Trip

The field trip to Crete (June 16-23rd 2009) involved three staff (Dr Alan Howard, Richard Tegg, Ken Beard) and 28 students registered for the degree in Human and Physical Geography at the University of Reading.

We were based in the village of Chora Sfakion in the Sfakia region of south west Crete. Fieldwork was undertaken in the village, at Loutro and in the Samaria Gorge.

Daytime temperatures ranged from 28 to 36 degrees and, whilst not in the sea, work was undertaken to model the extent and impact of a major flood in December 2000 in the Ilingas Gorge and the potential impact of tourist development on society in this area (Sfakia remains largely untouched by the mass tourism associated with northern Crete).

Group Photo - 22/6/2009, Chora Sfakion

Group Photo - 22/6/2009, Chora Sfakion

 During the field trip our students made use of various Web 2.0 technologies in order to produce group blogs and videos of their experiences. These were completed in the field utilising ubiquitous wireless internet access available in the village of Chora Sfakion and the mini Dell laptops we provided. The students did an excellent job and the process of writing daily entries on their group blogs (hosted on WordPress.com) enabled them to reflect upon the educational experiences they encountered. The blogs have been compiled here:

http://www.cretefieldtrip.com/sfakia/

where you will also find all the light hearted videos each group produced while in the field. A random choice of video is displayed here:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqwB-uqkc-w&w=425&h=344]

How blogging may help students deepen their learning

If you would like to find out about how and why weblogs (‘blogs’) might be used to enhance learning watch this interesting video: http://lindsayjordan.edublogs.org/2009/05/29/blogging-with-students-how-and-why/ or read Lindsay’s full paper at:

http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=ddj42whm_48g4n924f6

I will soon be undertaking a field trip to Crete during which students will maintain a blog to enable individual and collaborative reflection on events and issues they experience.

Exploration is fundamental to Geography and Geographers have a long history of sharing their travel observations with the public through publication in books and journals. Blogging provides a new outlet for this oldest geographical tradition and the blogs written in Crete will feature other Web 2.0 technologies including photo sharing, video and twitter.

Results to follow…