In today’s complex, interconnected world, it is more important than ever that students understand how nature and society work together. National Geographic is encouraging students to build the same skills geographers use to study the world, to better understand how their world, through a process called geo-inquiry. The geo-inquiry method is multi-disciplinary, project-based, experiential, and explores connections between humans and natural systems. Students learn to investigate their communities using a five-step process:
- Ask question
- Collect data
- Visualize and organize data
- Develop stories using data
- Take action by sharing stories
Before students can ask good questions, they must first observe the world around them. Tools and data including statistics, charts, maps, and videos help students identify patterns and change occurring locally, regionally, or globally. After analyzing the data, students begin to draw a conclusion and then act on their conclusion to impact change.
The geo-inquiry process leads students to think about the complexities of the world and make connections that change their communities. To learn more about geo-inquiry, check out https://www.nationalgeographic.org/education/programs/geo-inquiry/. The website offers classroom resources and information about an online course to help you implement the geo-inquiry method into your classroom.