Geography 2023 - 2024
Geography examines the spatial relationships between all physical and cultural phenomena in the world. Geographers also look at how the earth, its climate, and its landscapes are changing due to cultural intervention.
At St Stephen's Primary School, we are committed to providing all pupils with learning opportunities in geography that engage, inspire and challenge pupils to create a genuine interest in the subject and a curiosity about the world. The teaching equips the pupils with substantive knowledge about a range of places in the world and develops an understanding of the Earth's physical and human processes. As pupils progress, they will be able to investigate and think critically with deeper understanding of the subject. The curriculum is designed to build on geographical disciplinary knowledge over time and to develop the pupil's ability to apply geographical disciplinary knowledge to enable them to confidently communicate their findings and geographical understanding to a range of audiences.
Through high quality teaching, the intent is for pupils to have:
• an excellent substantive knowledge of a range of places and how they are interdependent and interconnected.
• an extensive geographical substantive knowledge and vocabulary.
• the ability to use geographical enquiry effectively.
• the ability to reach conclusions and explain findings.
• experience fieldwork and establish excellent fieldwork skills as well as other geographical techniques.
• the ability to be able to express well-balanced arguments about the local and worldwide issues.
Geography at St Stephen's is taught in blocks throughout the year, so that children can achieve depth in their learning. The key substantive knowledge and disciplinary knowledge of each blocked topic are identified and these are mapped across the school, ensuring that substantive knowledge builds progressively and that children develop disciplinary knowledge systematically. Existing substantive knowledge is checked at the beginning of each topic, as part of the KWL strategy (What I know, What I would like to Know and What I have Learned). This ensures that teaching is informed by the children’s starting points and that it takes account of pupil voice, incorporating children’s interests. Tasks are selected and designed to provide appropriate challenges to all learners, in line with the school’s commitment to inclusion. At the end of each topic, key substantive knowledge and disciplinary knowledge are reviewed by the children and rigorously checked by the teacher and consolidated as necessary.
Cross curricular outcomes in geography are planned for and these are indicated on the topic planning. The geography provision is also well resourced and specific resources are mapped to specific year groups and topics to support effective teaching and learning. The local area is fully utilised to achieve the desired outcomes, with extensive opportunities for learning outside the classroom embedded in practice.
Outcomes in topic and literacy books, evidence a broad and balanced geography curriculum and demonstrate children’s acquisition of identified key substantive knowledge. Children review their successes in achieving the lesson question at the end of every session and are actively encouraged to identify their own target areas. Children also discuss what they have learned comparative to their starting points at the end of every topic and assess it against the key learning assessment ladders. As children progress throughout the school, they develop a deeper substantive knowledge, understanding an appreciation of their local area and its place within the wider geographical context. Regular school trips also provide further relevant and contextual learning.
Equality and diversity
At St Stephen's, we are committed to providing a teaching environment which ensures all children are provided with the same learning opportunities regardless of social class, gender, culture, race, special educational need or disability. Teachers use a range of strategies to ensure inclusion and also to maintain a positive ethos where children demonstrate positive attitudes towards others. Support for specific individuals is well considered and planned for, to ensure that tasks provide learners with an appropriate level of challenge. At St Stephen's, we are committed to creating a positive geographical learning experience for all. It is our aim to promote self-esteem in pupils and help them to understand and value diversity in terms of cultures, religions, beliefs, ethnicities and social background. This is achieved by teaching a curriculum that breaks down barriers and reduces ignorance and prejudice. At St Stephen's Primary it starts by the children having the opportunity to share their own personal geographies and experiences within the local area, which is then extended to exploring and valuing the diversity of different communities within England and subsequently in the wider world.
Access and inclusion
All pupils are entitled to access the geography curriculum at a level appropriate to their needs. To ensure inclusion, teachers use a range of strategies in line with the school’s inclusion policy. Independent tasks, as well as teaching, are also well-adapted to ensure an appropriate level of challenge. The school makes full use of additional adults who are deployed effectively to ensure that identified children are able to make progress in each curriculum area, according to their full potential.
Spirituality is important to us at St Stephen's as we aim to implement our school values when learning geography by showing perserverence, determination, ambition and inclusion throughout our lessons. We use a variety of resources including audio visual, texts, visits and visitors to enable pupils to understand the world they live in and to reflect on their own identity as well as that of others. A sense of awe and wonder is developed through study of the subject and a celebration for that which enriches the world for all. We encourage our pupils to believe that they can change the world for the better after continuing to acquire knowledge from this curriculum subject.
Assessment for learning is continuous throughout the planning, teaching and learning cycle.
Assessment is supported by use of the following strategies:
- Observing children at work, individually, in pairs, in a group and in class during whole class teaching.
- Using differentiated, open-ended questions that require children to explain and unpick their understanding.
- Providing effective feedback, including interactive marking through red pen questions where appropriate, to engage children with their learning and to provide opportunities for self-assessment, consolidation, depth and target setting.
- Book moderation and monitoring of outcomes of work, to evaluate the range and balance of work and to ensure that tasks meet the needs of different learners (with the acquisition of the pre-identified key knowledge of each topic and skills being evidenced through the outcomes).
- Use of the ‘what I know already, what I want to know and what I have learnt’ (KWL) strategy throughout a unit, alongside specific and measurable learning questions for each lesson.
- Child and teacher review of both the agreed success criteria at the end of each unit, to inform focused consolidation where this is necessary.
Careers In Geography
Climate Scientist, Ice Core Scientist, Meteorologist, Volcanologist, Risk Analyst, Park Ranger, Environmentalist, Conservationist, Teacher, Urban and Community Planner.
Useful Website Links