Thursday 31st May 2007 by C. Freeman
Students at Brooke Weston took part in research by Ordnance Survey to find out how relevant maps were to their everyday life. The mapping company supplies free local maps to students across Britain as part of an annual scheme. Now researcher Peter Kraftl from the University of Northampton visited Brooke Weston to see how useful they have proved.
He said: 'Mapped Out is a nationwide scheme by Ordnance Survey where Year 7 students are given free maps. The main impetus is to raise awareness of the importance of mapwork. There has been a national downturn in the number of students taking geography as a GCSE option and Ordnance Survey would like to introduce mapping to students as a way of getting them interested again.'
The geography department at Brooke Weston bucks the national trend with students keen to study it at GCSE level. The map scheme has been running for the past four years at Brooke Weston and so teacher, Peter Rowbotham organised two focus groups, of Year 7 and Year 9 students to be interviewd. Mr Kraftl said: 'With the Year 7s there's generally an initial wave of interest and the ones who have the most interest are those that then do outdoor activities like the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme.'
This year Ordnance Survey supplied more than 700,000 maps, each worth £7.99 to Year 7 pupils across the country. 88 per cent of LEA schools in Britain take part in the Mapped Out scheme.