Our priority is to ensure that the children are confident learners who engage in their learning to make sense of the world and be knowledgeable and curious both in their immediate surroundings and in people, places and the environment in the wider world. We develop their understanding of people and places so that they can be respectful of people around the world. We want children to see that geography is about them growing up in their world and this starts in their local area and then goes beyond to explore the UK and the rest of the world. We believe children need to understand the difference between places and their cultures to become well rounded citizens now and for their future. It is important to provide a knowledge rich curriculum that develops across the school. The knowledge, skills and language is ordered coherently so that it can be revisited and built upon over time. This curriculum structure helps pupils to deepen their understanding of physical and human geographical processes, fostering curiosity and fascination for the world we live in.
Geography is taught every other half term in Key Stage One following a PKC scheme of work linked to the National Curriculum that maps out the skills and knowledge that children will develop whilst at Spring Meadow. This provides progression throughout the school and knowledge is built on each year. Each year our geography curriculum begins with a ‘Spatial Sense’ unit that explicitly teaches geographical skills such as locating places on a map, positioning items on a map, using symbols in a key, interpreting scale, reading climate graphs, identifying locations using co-ordinates, interpreting population data, identifying elevation on relief maps and more. The children learn about their local area and then move onto the UK and the wider world. Including finding out about the seven continents and the seas and oceans, comparing life here and in Cape Town and looking at what it is like in Northern European countries. In EYFS the children are taught geography through a transport topic. Associated with this is lots of foundational knowledge about places, similarities and differences, locational and positional language, transport, and lots of knowledge about the local area the children live in. It them progresses onto learning about transport around the world and finding out about the North and South Pole. Children will be introduced to geographical vocabulary at each stage to support them to be able to understand and become more knowledgeable on the topics covered. This will support children when reading and writing to be more independent to find research for themselves. Children are given opportunities to use resources within school and go on field trips to provide them with an engaging and enriched source of learning beyond the classroom and have first-hand experiences. Fieldwork provides the children with real life situations to navigate real landscapes, gather data and have a real purpose to their learning. The learning of geography is supported by resources in their learning environment including globes, displays, atlases, vocabulary displayed and Knowledge Organisers which support the child with each topic with key knowledge they will be learning about. Knowledge Organisers can be used at home to support children and adults at home with the learning.
The key knowledge, skills and language are revisited throughout children’s learning using mini plenaries, key assessment questioning and recaps to allow teachers to be responsive to the children’s learning. In Key Stage One at the end of a unit of work, our children’s accumulated geographical knowledge is assessed which may take the form of quizzes linked to the core knowledge, or a written task. In EYFS they are assessed throughout the unit in different forms, including conversations with children and observations. The geography subject leader monitors the teaching and learning of geography throughout the year through learning walks, scrutinising work and discussions with children from across the school to find out what they enjoy and know about in geography. This evaluation of the teaching and learning of geography within the school informs them of next steps to be taken in further raising standards in geography.
Our children leave our school confident in their knowledge of many aspects of geography, including understanding maps and geographical features. The knowledge, skills, and language they have learnt will prepare them for the content of the Key Stage 2 geography curriculum. We want our children to understand various places and cultures to become rounded citizens who may inspire others now an in the future.