“Geography is a subject which holds the key to our future.” – Michael Palin
Earth provides us with our needs for today and learning how our actions can influence its future will help children begin to make informed decisions about the way they live their lives now and in the future. We therefore aim to develop the children’s love of the world around them through geography and inspire curiosity and fascination for the planet, and their place in it, for many years to come.
We aim to do this through developing knowledge of the location of globally significant places, including their physical and human characteristics. We also aim to ensure that children understand the geographical processes that bring about physical and human features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about change over time. Whilst observing and studying these, we aim to ensure children are competent in the geographical skills needed to collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork, interpret a range of sources, and communicate geographical information in a variety of ways.
We use Oddizzi to support planning and resourcing, as it provides a wide range of up-to-date resources including interactive maps, diagrams, aerial photographs, an online encyclopaedia, virtual postcards, quizzes and short film clips to inspire children. Within every unit, there is a quiz.
Fieldwork is a key element of our geography curriculum and experiences include exploring the school’s locality in Year 1, exploring how the village of Cardinham and its land use has changed over time in Year 4, and exploring the impact the local farming industry has on a local village in Year 6.
To support learning, children also have a knowledge organiser in their book and on display with key learning points and maps, diagrams, facts and vocabulary. They also take one home so they can share their learning at home. These can be found on year groups pages.
Our geography curriculum is ambitious for all pupils. We therefore consider ways of minimising and reducing barriers so that all pupils are included. The areas where we consider varying approaches, adaptations and scaffolds that include maintaining an inclusive learning environment, using multi-sensory approaches (including ICT), working with additional adults, managing peer relationships through particular groupings, using a wide range of recording methods, ensuring clear communication for all needs, and allowing for formative assessment by ensuring learning objectives and outcomes are understood by all children and assessment methods are wide ranging so not reliant on writing ability. At the same time, word and sentence level skills are practised developed through geography which impacts on children’s writing achievements.
Our geography curriculum is high-quality and sequenced to demonstrate progression in knowledge, skills and vocabulary. Children deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes and how this affects landscapes and environments.
We measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:
- Formative assessing of on-going learning and children’s understanding of locational and place knowledge, human and physical geography, and how to communicate geographically using technical vocabulary. This takes place before and during a unit through mind maps, KWL grids and quizzes.
- Images and videos of the children’s practical learning .
- Interviewing the pupils about their learning (pupil voice) with their books.
- Whole class feedback and feedforward of work in books.
How to Help you Child at Home
When out and about in your local area, you can help your child geographically by chatting about local physical features, attractions and activities. You might even like to develop this idea by asking them to provide a tourist guide for their local area for visiting relatives.
On a journey, you can share the road map or map phone app with your son or daughter so they can follow the route while you talk about where you are going. Alternatively, ask them to draw a map of their journey to school or the local shop, including any natural or man-made features along the way.
Holidays are an ideal opportunity to compare the location with their home area — you might ask your child to talk through five similarities and differences, for example. Holidays also provide an opportunity for a museum visit or a trip to a tourist attraction.
Closer to home, use anything at your disposal! Magazines, TV, films and even some computer games can provide your child with a view of distant places. They enable your child to be transported instantly to another place. Prompt their thinking with questions, such as: What might the weather be like in this place? Why might the road have been built where it is? The list of questions is endless and will lead to all sorts of discussions which will really help to develop curiosity about, and understanding of, the world.
You can also take some time to visit these interesting websites below: