Geography Intent, Implementation and Impact
Geography Curriculum Aims & Rationale
The national curriculum for geography aims to ensure that all pupils:
At Sacred Heart Primary School our intent is to provide a high-quality geography education, which ensures depth and breadth and teaches knowledge and skills progressively, providing plenty of opportunities for children to build upon and embed previous knowledge. Through discreet geography lessons, our curriculum aims to ignite children’s curiosity about their locality, the United Kingdom and the wider world. Through finding out about current climate issues, children understand how individuals and countries have an impact on the environment and make choices about how to live more sustainably. Children understand that through geography, we can learn about our own place in the world, our culture and values and those of others, and their rights and responsibilities to other people. Teaching equips pupils to ask perceptive questions, think critically, interpret geographical information and conduct fieldwork.
Geography topics form key drivers within our thematic curriculum. Children spend a term focussing on a geography topic in order to gain a deep and broad understanding. Within lessons, children have the opportunity to ask and answer questions about the human and natural world. They develop their knowledge of places and environments throughout the world, an understanding of maps, and a range of investigative and problem-solving skills, drawing on resources within the local area. Pupils have opportunities to learn about and discuss current climate issues and develop their understanding of living sustainably, helping them to become responsible global citizens. Through field work and opportunities to learn within the outdoors, children develop an appreciation of the natural world.
In Year One, pupils build on their experiences from Early Years, focusing on developing their knowledge of their own local area, basic map reading skills and human and physical features of a locality. In Year Two, children begin to develop a broader understanding of the United Kingdom and how our locality compares to other areas of the world. Geography has been structured with a sense of proximity to Coventry. Key Stage 1 starts with the immediate area, before moving to the city of Coventry and England’s coast. It finishes with an understanding of the United Kingdom and a comparison with a country in a different continent. Our first geography topic in KS2 is Europe (developing the concept that a group of countries can form a continent). Studies then move to two different continents before covering a larger global topic. Another key factor in curriculum development has been the profile of our academies, with Europe and Africa providing opportunities for parental engagement and for children to learn more about each other’s diverse cultures.
Each topic is centred around ‘Big Questions’, which are used to assess children’s knowledge. Our curriculum teaches both the knowledge, skills and vocabulary that children need to be successful geographers.
Following the mapping out of topics in accordance with our rationale, we have developed specific skills progression grids for each curriculum subject. For geography, these are divided into the categories of ‘Investigating Places’, ‘Investigating Patterns’ and ‘Communicating Geographically’. Skills within each area, build sequentially. Every geography topic is enriched by visits within the local area, fieldwork or cultural enrichment days. Enrichment opportunities are carefully mapped against our Romero Charter to ensure that all children are accessing a wide range of experiences to help them develop both personally and as a learner.
Upon leaving Key Stage 1, children will have developed a strong knowledge of their local area and the countries of the United Kingdom and by the end of Key Stage 2, will be able to locate continents, oceans, countries and cities around the world with confidence. Pupils will be able to explain aspects of human and physical geography articulately; use maps and atlases, and understand the negative impact of climate change and their personal responsibilities as global citizens. Well-constructed and well-taught lessons will provide pupils with opportunities to develop research and field work skills and create curious, enthusiastic learners, who show independence and resilience.
Knowledge and skills will have developed progressively to not only enable learners to meet the requirements of the National Curriculum but to prepare pupils to become competent geographers in secondary education. Pupils will have thoroughly enjoyed learning about geography, therefore encouraging them to have a life-long passion for the natural world and an ongoing curiosity about our global climate, and different cultures, environments and societies. They should be able to think critically and communicate confidently both orally and in their writing. Through in depth study of the Big Questions, children should be able to think independently, debate and reflect on their own opinions and the opinions of others.