Shriram Foundation, Chennai, and TIIGS are collaborating to create innovative geography education spaces, content, and pedagogy for school students and teachers. We have set up a GeoVidyaa Geography Centre (GVGC) in a rural school in Thiruneermalai (Tamil Nadu, near Chennai) to not only improve geography education but to use geography as a way of imparting interdisciplinary education; both are desperately needed in our schools. We plan to develop more such Centres for other rural schools also.
The GVGCs constitute the first such initiative in India. This initiative aims to help students and teachers develop a whole new appreciation and approach to geography – geography education for 21st century India! Geography that is relevant, exciting, fun, and dynamic – not the dreary textbook rote memorization, but interconnected, integrated, participatory, and exploratory.
You could be part of this exciting change!
Are you a knowledgeable and passionate geographer? Do you wish you had space and opportunity to be creative in your approach to geography and inter-disciplinary education? Do you wish to work with a team of dedicated professionals?
Apply for a geography fellowship with us! Become part of a new generation of geographers.
Here are some details of the Fellowship:
- Anchor the developing and sustaining GeoVidyaa Geography Centre – Thiruneermalai (GVGC-T) via generating content and conducting activities for students and teachers.
- Document the activities to replicate successful practices in other GVGCs.
Geography education needs to be interesting and action-oriented. Children are attracted to the world and its processes, wanting to make sense of it. We need to provide study content in a way that is connected to everything in their lives. An inquiry-based and interdisciplinary approach is the need of the hour. Geography education would support the learning in other disciplines for children, if approached in this manner feeding into their imagination while nurturing their interest and position in this world.
TIIGS was established as a response to these needs.
Shriram Foundation agrees with these needs and identifies the benefits of such education for children in their schools, combining these with the Montessori approach they have been implementing in their schools.
We envisage the GVGC-T as a template for replication in other rural schools so that children get an experience of real time geography education that triggers and expands their career choices.
What kind of candidates are we looking for?
- A degree in geography. (BA / BSc / MA / MSc).
- Areas of interest / specialization in geography: physical geography (preferred), cultural geography, GIS.
- Written and oral fluency in English (required); some degree of fluency in Tamil (not required, but desirable)
- Willingness to stay and work in a rural setting, and to share knowledge and experience with children and school teachers.
- Conversant with use of online tools (communication, research, etc.).
- Passionate about geography and geography education.
- International candidates may also apply.
Content and nature of training to be imparted:
- Basic concepts and their applications advancing with the interest and understanding of the children.
- The skills of making connections between geography and life, and other subjects.
- Thematic presentations, discussions, projects, field trips, film screenings, case studies, art work (visual and performing), etc. would be given to the candidates with adequate training.
Places of training:
- TIIGS – Bangalore
- GVGC – Thiruneermalai (Tamil Nadu)
Place of posting:
Thiruneermalai (near Pallavaram, Chennai, Tamil Nadu)
What are the benefits (salaries, etc.) for this fellowship?
Please see all the information in the fellowship FAQ (“Frequently Asked Questions”) here.
What are the prospects for this person on completion of the fellowship?
- Take up a School Leadership course and become the School Director of an SF school
- Pursuing further degrees in geography related subjects based on their prerequisites
- Continued work with SF on becoming a faculty for assisting Geography Fellows with add on training courses
- Take up refresher courses for higher concepts in Geography with TIIGS
In what ways would the children benefit from the program?
- Children will learn geography and its expansive applications.
- They will learn how to apply geography principles to daily life and to a variety of issues ranging from personal to community, regional, national, and global scales.
- They will have FUN learning what is wrongly seen as a boring subject.
- They would have newer career options with this exposure.
Contents of the Geography Fellowship program:
- Curricular – clarify the curriculum content, help children understand the concepts in the resources that they have – textbooks, while helping them internalize it through activities
- E.g.: learning latitude and longitude through games and exercises.
- Co-Curricular – add to the curriculum content other elements that expand on the curriculum. Concepts are reinforced with activities to show them their application.
- E.g.: What are latitudes and longitudes and why do we need to know about them? Latitude is a factor that helps determine the type of climate we have and this is how it affects the kinds of food crops we grow; longitude is how we keep time – that is location specific and not uniform throughout the world
- Extra-curricular -Where the activity connects to the curriculum we reinforce it, where it yields other concepts, we add them while on task.
- E.g.: with global warming, tropical diseases are spreading to temperate areas also. What are the factors behind this? Where does geography come into all this? This will involve not just latitudes and climate, but habitats, migration routes for human and non-human species, transportation geography, political connections, job vocations etc.
Materials in the GVGC Centre include standard commercially available maps, specially prepared maps, basic stationery, atlases, reading materials, computers, LCD projector, white board, comfortable and child-friendly space for seating and activities, everything available to children at their heights so they can explore on their on, thematically with guidance and support for further exploration.
To apply, please complete an online application form here.