MAPPING SKILLS FIELDWORK: SHIPPING TRAFFIC & HAZARDS AT SEA
Designed to support a school trip to Red Funnel Ferries
GEOGRAPHY Upper Key Stage 2
Variants: Mid Ability students
Geographical Skills and Fieldwork
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Mapping course changes, channel and navigation rules
This is a set of ‘Geographical Skills’ resources focusing on mapping skills on land and at sea, including traffic regulation and hazards at sea. It is to be used in preparation of the trip on a Red Funnel Vehicle Ferry, during the trip and allows for in-depth research of hazards at sea after the trip. It engages students with the shipping traffic of the UK’s Southern coastal region from Southampton Harbour via Southampton Water and the Solent to East Cowes on the Isle of Wight.
As pre-visit tasks the resources enable students to develop their map reading skills by using 4 and 6 figure grid references and by comparing land maps like OS maps to specialised maps for shipping traffic like Admiralty Charts. The Solent Area is one of the busiest shipping areas of the UK and the traffic volume of leisure craft and commercial vessels has to adhere to shipping lanes marked by buoys and regulated
by maritime Right of Way rules. Students will be able to acquaint themselves with the concept of internationally understood charts, buoys and markers, which basically indicate what lies invisibly below the surface of the sea and might pose a hazard to shipping.
During the ferry trip students will have opportunity to apply this knowledge by tracking buoys and markers and following the ferry route by using land marks on the way. This includes working out why the ferry does not take the shortest route across the Solent and why large vessels have to stay in shipping lanes.
Post-visit the shipping hazards which can be encountered near land can be explored by researching the fate of the beached Hoegh Osaka car carrier and the cruise liner Costa Concordia, shipwrecked off the coast of Italy. This is a cross–over activity with e.g. PSHE because
the immense human and material cost of such disasters and the
involvement of human failure needs to be considered together with the geographical factors which led to these severe accidents.
The resources promote the use of directional language and geographical vocabulary in context and under field work conditions. Students will have the opportunity to compare and contrast the shipping traffic with road traffic regulations. They are encouraged to discuss why movement on water is different to movement on land and in which way maritime traffic rules reflect this difference. The task is designed for students in upper key stage 2.
The pre-visit activity serves as a reminder of how to use grid references for OS maps and this use of familiar maps will heighten their appreciation and understanding of how and why Admiralty Charts have to be different from land maps in order to serve a similar purpose at sea – to get from A to B safely. It will also allow discussion of why different types of maps for different purposes exist – in this case a map showing what cannot be seen – the underwater landscape. The activity on buoys extends this topic by showing how the invisible underwater landscape is made visible by markers on the surface of the sea; i.e. marking shipping lanes.
To complete this set of pre-visit resources, information on the basic traffic/Right of Way rules is supplied, which all shipping traffic has to adhere to in order to avoid accidents within and around shipping lanes.
During the trip students will be able to apply this knowledge and understanding by being able to “read” the buoys as they record them and understand the movements of vessels, including plotting the route of the ferry. They have opportunity to observe the busy shipping traffic and consider the similarities and differences with traffic on land.
Post-visit students will be able to research the consequences of not adhering to shipping lanes – and possible reasons for that. This activity will enable them discuss the commercial and human cost of errors of judgement and the real hazards posed by the geographical features under water.
Key Skills Practised
Students are given opportunity for practising map reading, focused and precise observation of traffic- related features and the recording of these observations under field trip conditions
Lateral thinking is encouraged by comparing and contrasting different types of maps for different purposes as well as traffic rules on land and at sea
They will develop an understanding that the observance of such rules is vital to the safety of all users of this space and that transport of goods and people on water is a highly skilled and specialised operation
There is ample opportunity for using directional language; recognising objects on the resource as objects in the real landscape & vice versa
Students will demonstrate and develop their understanding of different maps designed to serve different purposes, traffic rules and regulation at sea. They will demonstrate & develop use of descriptive, directional and geographical key vocabulary. They will practise co-operation skills. They will also develop geographical and a wider range of further skills depending on the depth of their research of the shipwrecked Hoegh Osaka and Costa Concordia.
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This page was last updated on: 01/06/2016