‘Gaining an understanding of a ‘Place’ through how humans interact with the world around us and how the world influences human activity.’
JUNIOR SCHOOL GEOGRAPHY CURRICULUM
GEOGRAPHY CHALLENGE - CLICK THE LINKS BELOW
Geography Curriculum Intent, Implementation and Impact
We have created a curriculum in Geography that instils children with a curiosity about the world and gives them the opportunity to learn through enquiry led learning. We set high aspirations for the children to build their understanding of the world through learning key knowledge and vocabulary and application of geographical skills.
The areas studied follow the scope and balance of the National Curriculum and combine elements of both human and physical geography to allow the children to understand the interaction between these features. Work is sequenced between and within year groups to build on prior learning, starting from the learning in Key Stage One and building through Key Stage Two. Key areas and concepts are built upon to ensure learning is embedded and transferred to children’s long-term memories. For example, in Year 3, children will look at the how tectonic plates influence the creation of mountains and this understanding of tectonic plates is built further upon in Year 5 when the children look at volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.
As children progress through Key Stage Two, the curriculum is designed to be increasingly progressive in both the complexity of the knowledge the children learn and also in the application of their thinking skills on how concepts affect the world around them. This will include gaining an understanding of the local geography they experience daily and how this compares and relates to the wider world.
We are inclusive in delivering the same curriculum to all children, considering their needs and differentiating when appropriate to support individual needs. Approaches may include in class support, providing different learning environments, alternative learning activities and assessment outcomes.
We encourage children to become Geographers and learn through answering questions they have developed through an enquiry led process. Children use a variety of geographical skills to help them to build their geographical knowledge. Teachers plan for interactive and engaging lessons that create memorable learning experiences. Children will work independently, in pairs and in groups to allow them to share their experiences and understanding, allowing them to learn from others. Maps, atlases, data, graphs, images, reference books and access to online resources provide the children with a variety of ways for them to engage and learn with the topics.
Key Knowledge Threads have been devised to support the children in understanding important aspects within Geography and to help them transfer their learning to their long-term memory. These include Settlement and Life, Physical Features, Human Interaction, Hazards and Location. Through the study of these, the children gain an understanding of ‘Place’ – the key features that make up the area they are learning about.
Knowledge Organisers will be used for each unit of work identifying the key knowledge that children are expected to take from each unit. These will be used at home and in class to enhance children’s understanding. These may be used at the beginning or end of an enquiry, depending on the teachers’ choices for that enquiry. Quizzes with questions formulated from the Knowledge Organisers allow for a relaxed yet purposeful method of supporting children in transferring key knowledge for each unit into their long-term memory.
As with all the learning in our curriculum, emphasis is placed on the learning behaviours that comprise the Prestbury Learner: resilience, communication and teamwork. When teaching lessons, teachers will encourage these to enhance the children’s learning.
In each enquiry, children will be given the opportunity to showcase their learning and make individual choices on how best to do this. This might involve written explanations, annotated diagrams, the use of digital software and the children’s own creativity. Often this will result in final ‘display page’ that will encompass the knowledge learned in that enquiry.
In each year group, there will be an element of fieldwork which involves engagement with the local area. Children will observe, record, gather data and evaluate what they find. The process of completing fieldwork allows the children to gain the practical experience involved with being a young geographer and find the answers to questions that geographers would ask.
Each enquiry question is formulated from objectives in the National Curriculum and children’s understanding will be assessed against these objectives. Enquiry questions are focused clearly to allow an assessment to be made. Teachers will consider each child’s understanding shown through the entire enquiry as well as completed pieces of work to gain a true picture of their understanding. To ensure inclusivity and that all children are able to be accurately assessed, assessment methods could include conversations with children, written tasks, responses from class discussions, final pieces of work and answers from Knowledge Organiser quizzes.