Royal Grammar School

Newcastle

Lake District Landscapes

Lake District Landscapes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the spirit of some current educational buzzwords, Messrs Downie and Wilson, greatly assisted by accompanying Year 10 student, Matthew Johnston, ‘stretched and challenged’ a group of able Year 7 Geographers with a brisk climb out of Grasmere one Sunday morning in June. They were the second instalment of this popular and oversubscribed field visit.

Maybe the path was a ‘steep learning curve’, too, as the students tried to find evidence in the spectacular landforms of a past glacial legacy. There was some lively competition for ‘Geographer of the Day’ as proposals were put forward for the geomorphology behind Sour Milk Gill, Easedale Tarn and the trough of Easedale itself.

The beauty of being in the vast classroom of the real world is that the wider remit of Geography can be explored, too. It is not only about extreme physical phenomena, exciting though they are. Reading the landscape revealed an understanding of the Lake District’s hill-sheep farming; the construction of dry stone walls; Will’s discovery of a stone post with holes to take the five crossbars of a rudimentary field gate hinted at the geographical landscape of Wordsworth’s time; evidence of the former coppicing of woodland; and an insight into the adaptations of different types of vegetation to the environment. Then Rosa found a big beetle, maybe a Dor (or Dung) Beetle, which seemed very keen to stay with her, as its bright purply-blue sheen was the perfect camouflage against her purply-blue waterproof jacket.

A visit to Sarah Nelson’s Gingerbread Shop helped support the economic geography of Grasmere.