Learning about coffee: Costa for Schools

As part of my interests around the cafe industry I am of course interested in learning about coffee more generally, thinking about how we get from bean to cup, and about coffee and its involvement in global commodity chains. Back when I was a school geography teacher I produced a set of lesson resources about Starbucks as a transnational corporation, thinking about the global spread of this particular coffee shop chain and a few of the issues of coffee as a commodity. I’m writing this blog post to highlight that a new set of resources are now available on the Costa for Schools website, written by the geographer Alan Parkinson.

costa-for-schoolsThere are six lessons divided into two sets: the first looks at coffee growing communities and how coffee trade affects different people and places; and the second set explores the commodity chain of the coffee bean from the farm to the cafe, as well as considering how people can be involved in the coffee supply chain, from an employee of a coffee shop to the consumer.

costa-for-schools-2The lessons are relevant for both the KS3 Geography curriculum around the concepts of space, interdependence, cultural understanding and diversity, as well as for those studying Geography at GCSE level too. A great set of resources if you need to teach about coffee and coffee shops – and there is even a little mention of my work on the rise of coffee shops too, which was nice to see.


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