What is Geography?
Geography is concerned with the Earth and its people. It seeks to study how people respond to their environment and how people affect the environment. It is therefore the study of places and should enable children to develop a feeling of what it might be to live in a particular place.
Geography encourages us to think about the distribution of natural features like mountains and rivers and also about the location and distribution of artefacts such as road, railway stations, towns and villages.
Our environment is fragile and it is most important that children grow up with an understanding of how to manage and protect the environment.
Learning and undertaking activities in geography contribute to the achievement of the curriculum which aims for all young people to become:
- Successful learners who enjoy learning, make progress and achieve
- Confident individuals who are able to live safe, healthy and fulfilling lives
- Responsible citizens who make a positive contribution to society.
Pupils in the Foundation Stage will be given the opportunity to find out about their own locality and places within their own country and compare these with places abroad. Simple mapping skills are introduced during Key Stage One where the focus is on identifying the physical and human features of different locations. The children will have the opportunity to formulate and share their opinions.
During Key Stage Two the children will experience a variety of geographical topics, all of which will enhance the children’s understanding of place, space and the environment. The children will be given opportunities to find out about their own country and implement map skills, using a variety of resources including aerial photos, atlases and information books. Children will also learn about people, places and their environments. Year Three also participate in a field trip to Hindleap Warren in Ashdown Forest to study a contrasting locality in the U.K. During the week the children will carry out map work and orienteering and study the nearby stream. During Year Six, the pupils take a trip to Italy where they go on to study an active volcano.
In Key Stage Three pupils follow the Common Entrance Syllabus. They find out about industrial change and the differences between primary, secondary and tertiary industries. The children learn how to interpret maps and evidence to investigate globalisation and environmental issues, including case studies about a global industry and an environmentally sensitive area. Ordnance survey maps will be used to revise key map skills. They develop map skills which enable them to read maps and plans at a range of scales, using symbols, keys and scales and to use appropriate graphical techniques to present evidence on maps and diagrams. In Year Eight, the pupils go to Flatford Mill in Suffolk. Whilst here, they collect the data necessary to complete their field work investigations. Revision and examination techniques are taught as part of the syllabus. Pupils learn how aspects of weather and climate vary from place to place and practise using atlas maps to identify patterns and to draw and interpret climate graphs.
Homework may be used to support Geography, where children may be asked to collect pictures and souvenirs etc from home for display work and discussions. In Key Stage Two and Three, homework is based on investigations and research questions. This enables the children to broaden their understanding of concepts and topics covered in class.
In the Foundation Stage and Key Stage One, children are assessed through observation and this is recorded in the Transition and Reception Profiles. In Key Stage Two and Three revision tests take place after each unit has been completed.