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Creating a Working Problem Statement
To help students create a Working Problem Statement (WPS),
you may want to have them identify social and economic differences between North and South Korea that could account for the differences in levels of artificial lighting in the two countries. Have the students:

compare and contrast the Korea of yesterday and today;

compare the GIS information of North and the South Korea such as topographic data, vegetation index mosaic, land use maps, population maps and charts, temperature and precipitation maps;

contrast the economies of North and South Korea;

analyze current events;

estimate population, energy use, and GDP from DMSP images;

estimate area/efficiency of agricultural and forested lands;

use geographic overlays to estimate other socioeconomic factors.

 

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What is the focus of this module? "Korean Enigma" uses nighttime DMSP remotely sensed images of North and South Korea to engage students in a comparison of the social and economic aspects of these two countries. The satellite images show widespread nighttime illumination in the southern portion of the peninsula, compared to widespread darkness in the northern portion.

What are some interrelated teaching opportunities? The "Korean Enigma" module provides opportunities for linking the natural sciences with other areas of study such as the humanities, communications, mathematics, geography, economics, social studies, and world history. Creation of an interdisciplinary curriculum has recently received a great deal of attention. The Dictionary of Education describes interdisciplinary curriculum as "a curriculum organization which cuts across subject-matter lines to focus upon comprehensive life problems or broad based areas of study that bring together the various segments of the curriculum into meaningful association" Good, C. (Ed.). (1973). Dictionary of education (3rd ed.). New York: McGraw Hill.

What is the compelling problem that students will face in this module? Your students have been asked to prepare a report to the U.S. State Department providing an in-depth look at the reasons for information contained in a DMSP night view of the Korean peninsula. South Korea is ablaze with lights while North Korea is shrouded in darkness.

What issues will students encounter as they work through this module? How do the Gross Domestic Products of North and South Korea compare? How do the systems of education compare between North and South Korea? Where can information on military strength of North and South Korea be found? Which country has more people? Do the climates differ? Does one nation have more natural resources than the other? What role does communism play in the economics and politics of Korea today?

What is the role of remote sensing in this module? DMSP images can be used to estimate population size, energy use, and Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the two Koreas.

Preparation Checklist--have you thought of everything?

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Grade Level: 7-12

Providing for Reflection
Regardless of the level of commitment during the project, students can still experience significant learning if they enter into the reflection process. Ideally, reflection occurs at various points during the module work since so many things are being learned and experienced. However, reflection done as part of a closure session can be a particularly powerful learning tool.

 

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Last updated April 28, 2005
   

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