Geography

– ‘The study of geography is more than just memorising places on a map.  It’s about understanding the complexity of our world.’  Barack Obama

Intent

At Fishtoft Academy we believe that inside each of our learners is an innate sense of curiosity and exploration that must not be allowed to lie dormant.  Geography is, by its very nature, an investigative subject and through our Geography curriculum we intend to provide our learners with opportunities to:

  • Find out about diverse locations and communities.
  • Learn about natural and man-made environments
  • Understand the Earth’s key physical and human processes
  • Know where places are, what they are like, and how they are linked to other places
  • Ask questions about the world around them
  • Undertake geographical enquires through fieldwork
  • Draw conclusions from their enquiries and explain their findings
  • Share well-balanced opinions, which demonstrate good knowledge and understanding about current issues in society and the environment
  • Develop a broad range of geographical vocabulary and be able to apply this appropriately in different contexts

Over time, our learners will gain a growing knowledge about the world and understand more deeply the interaction between physical and human processes, and the formation and use of landscapes and environments.  They will learn how to communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.

However, above all else, the over-arching aim for our Geography Curriculum is to inspire within our learners a curiosity about, and fascination with, the world and its people which will remain with them for the rest of their lives.

Implementation

At Fishtoft Academy our Geography Curriculum is informed by and aligned with the National Curriculum (2014).  Our teachers plan coherent and progressive sequences of learning using the Academy’s knowledge and progression ladders and the support materials relating to different aspects of Geography produced by the Geographical Association.

We teach geography through themed, cross-curricular units of work to enable our learners to see ideas and concepts within a context and make links with other subject areas.  This is important as our learners do not see separate subjects in their questioning about the world. Geography is highly interlinked with History and Science and it is important for us to build upon those links. However, when our teachers, teach a geographical concept or skill, they explicitly state that the children are learning geography.  Places for study in Geography have also been chosen to make sensible and productive links with the wider curriculum.

Along with History and Science, I.T. also plays an important role in our Geography curriculum, with Digimaps (an online mapping tool) being used across both Key Stages to support children in developing their map skills.  Our English teaching is also often linked to our cross-curricular learning in order that our learners can develop a deeper understanding by applying and recalling their geographical knowledge in a different context (further contextual learning).

In line with our curriculum intent, ‘I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand’; when planning, our teachers include experiences beyond the classroom, including opportunities for fieldwork, external educational visits and workshops.

The curriculum content has been arranged in such a way as to ensure that it is most appropriate for the developmental age of our learners. With this in mind, our youngest learners learn about their immediate surroundings and as the children’s capacity to take on wider knowledge develops, they study places further afield and in greater depth. For example, our youngest learners make simple comparisons, such as, between hot and cold places, whilst older learners make more detailed comparisons including contrasting areas. Our oldest learners are also provided with opportunities to explore, discuss and evaluate more widely the impact of geographical events on humans and the environment and vice versa.

EYFS

In the EYFS we encourage our learners to make sense of their physical world and its communities through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.

Through our cross-curricular units of work, we aim for our learners to be able to achieve the ELGs for ‘People, Culture & Communities’ and ‘The Natural World’ by the end of EYFS, demonstrating their ability to:

  • Describe their immediate environment using knowledge from observation, discussion, stories, non-fiction texts and maps. (People, Culture & Communities)
  • Explain some similarities and differences between life in this country and life in other countries, drawing on knowledge from stories, non-fiction texts and (when appropriate) maps. (People, Culture & Communities)
  • Know some similarities and differences between the natural world around them and contrasting environments, drawing on their experiences and what has been read in class. (The Natural World)
  • Understand some important processes and changes in the natural world around them, including the seasons and changing states of matter. (The Natural World)

KS1

The main components of study will include:

  • Knowledge about the world, the United Kingdom and their locality (Fishtoft, Boston & Skegness)
  • Understanding and the application of geographical vocabulary – including words relating to human and physical geography
  • Developing geographical skills and field work, including first-hand observations to enhance their knowledge

KS2

The main components of study will include:

  • Extending knowledge of the local area to include the United Kingdom, Europe, North and South America
  • Developing a deeper understanding of a variety of physical and human features
  • Building on their geographical knowledge, understanding and skills to improve upon their locational and place knowledge
  • Developing wider and more secure understanding of the geographical vocabulary they use
  • Development of field work and enquiry skills so that children can develop their own questions and carry out their investigations.