Our geography curriculum aims to inspire pupils to be curious and explorative thinkers with a diverse knowledge of the world. We want pupils to develop the confidence to question and observe places, measure and record data in various ways and analyse and present their findings. We aim to build awareness of how Geography shapes our lives at multiple scales over time. We hope that pupils become resourceful, active citizens who will have the skills to contribute and improve the world around them.
We aim to build children’s understanding through a strong focus on developing geographical skills and knowledge and improve their critical thinking, with the ability to ask perceptive questions to develop their fieldwork skills across each year group. Our curriculum also encourages children to have a deep interest and knowledge in their locality and how it differs from other areas of the world and extend their geographical vocabulary.
In order to meet the aims of the National curriculum for Geography we have identified the following key strands:
Our geography curriculum has a clear progression of skills and knowledge within these four strands across each year group. These strands are interwoven through each year group’s units to ensure that attainment targets are met each year.
Our curriculum is a spiral curriculum, with essential knowledge and skills revisited with increasing complexity, allowing pupils to revise and build on their previous learning. Locational knowledge, in particular, will be reviewed in each unit to consolidate children’s understanding of key concepts, such as scale and place. Cross-curricular links are included throughout each unit, allowing children to make connections and apply their Geography skills to other areas of learning.
Enquiry questions form the basis for every unit, ensuring that pupils gain a solid understanding of geographical knowledge and kills by applying them to answer enquiry questions. These questions are open-ended with no preconceived answers and therefore are genuinely meaningful to engage pupils in generating a real change. By attempting to answer them, children learn how to collect, interpret and present data using geographical methodologies and make informed decisions by applying their knowledge.
Each unit contains elements of geographical skills and fieldwork to ensure that skills are practised as often as possible. Our curriculum follows a cycle that maps out the fieldwork process of question, observe, measure, record and present, to reflect elements of the National Curriculum. This ensures children will learn how to decide on an area of enquiry, plan to measure data using a range of methods, capture the data and represent it to a range of appropriate stakeholders in various formats.
Fieldwork includes smaller opportunities on the school grounds to larger-scale visits to investigate physical and human features. Developing fieldwork skills within the school environment and revisiting them in multiple units enables pupils to consolidate their understanding of various methods. It also gives children the confidence to evaluate methodologies without having to leave the school grounds and do so within the confines of familiar place. This makes fieldwork regular and accessible while giving children a thorough understanding of their locality to compare it to other places.
Our lessons incorporate various teaching strategies from independent tasks to paired and group work, including practical hands-on, computer based and collaborative tasks. This variety means that lessons are engaging to all pupils and accommodate children with different learning styles. Each lesson is differentiated to ensure all pupils can access learning and there are always opportunities to stretch pupils’ learning. Knowledge organisers support pupils in building a foundation of factual knowledge by encouraging recall of key facts and vocabulary.
Impact of our curriculum is monitored through both formative and summative assessment opportunities. Utilising Kapow resources, we plan for a “skill catcher” and “knowledge assessment” at the end of each unit to provide a summative assessment. We hope to shape children into curious and inspired geographers with the respect and appreciation for the world around them alongside an understanding of the interconnection between the human and the physical.
The impact of our Geography curriculum is that children will:
● Compare and contrast human and physical features to describe and understand similarities and differences between various places in the UK, Europe and the Americas.
● Name, locate and understand where and why the physical elements of our world are located and how they interact, including processes over time relating to climate, biomes, natural disasters and the water cycle.
● Understand how humans use the land for economic and trading purposes, including how the distribution of natural resources has shaped this.
● Develop an appreciation for how humans are impacted by and have evolved around the physical geography surrounding them and how humans have had an impact on the environment, both positive and negative.
● Develop a sense of location and place around the UK and some areas of the wider world using the eight points of a compass, four and six-figure grid references, symbols and keys on maps, globes, atlases, aerial photographs, and digital mapping. .
● Identify and understand how various elements of our globe create positioning, including latitude, longitude, the hemispheres, the tropics and how time zones work, including night and day.
● Present and answer their own geographical enquiries using planned and specifically chosen methodologies, collected and digital technologies.
● Meet the end of key stage expectations outlined in the National curriculum for Geography.