Global Economics

Global Economics: 

Students worked collaboratively on a project to produce a world map which they annotated with economical information from different countries. During this they compared the GDP data from the list of different countries. This included, summarising data, creating relevant graphs, comparing summative data and drawing conclusions. Activities then linked with additional maps on the International Notice board so that all students will be aware of the countries place and its capital.

Aims and outcomes: 

Students were encouraged to recognise that they are within the top 1% of the world’s population in terms of GDP wealth. This gave them global perspective of their own place within the world as they recognise the relative wealth of countries as well as the historical and natural reasons for the distribution of wealth worldwide. They also practised statistical skills in real world application.

What did the teachers say?

“Our ISA activity has given us in the department the opportunity to demonstrate to students how broad our knowledge about the world is; as role models to the children this has hopefully shown them the importance of knowing about the world and the huge diversity within it.  Additionally, we have been able to share with them how important mathematics, logic and particularly statistical analysis and skills is in helping build a picture of such global diversity.  We have been able to guide the students in their discussions about WHY such diversity exists.  It has been thrilling to have these kinds of conversations in lessons and we have thoroughly enjoyed guiding the students through: Google's World Development Indicators and the Gapminder tools; various measures of prosperity and how/why they may be related; specifically, the differences between GNI and GDP and why per capita is an important factor; what kinds of charts and graphs are useful in showing (or not showing!) expected outcomes from their gathered data; and much more!


Through exploring Google's World Development Indicators and the Gapminder tools, students have realised several things: a vast wealth of reliable data, factors they may have never considered before or taken for granted (such as infrastructure and proportion of seats held by women in parliaments) and even some countries they had never heard of.  The main impact I feel is the big "why" questions that students have come up with.  Several discussions have led to cyclic answers!  An example of a class discussion with 9gb: “a reason that prosperous countries have higher GDP is that things are worth more there (so even in two countries where exactly the same stuff is bought in each, if one sells each item for more than that will result in that country having a higher GDP)” ... “why is stuff worth more there” ... “because the country is more prosperous!”  “What is the root cause of this cycle?” As we all started on the same footing, there must be some key moments back in time where this eventuality was made and other key moments which led to the gaps (very noticeable from time series graph) widening.  Technological developments, exploration, industrialisation and abuses of power that have come with this are all contributing factors.” Mr Philips (Head of Mathematics)