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Geography

The Geography curriculum seeks to give students a deep knowledge and broad overview of some of the world’s biggest modern day challenges on a global and local scale.  It exposes students to potential solutions in the hope that we can make our students responsible global citizens and build their social and cultural capital. 

In Year 7, students start the year by learning basic geographical skills before going on to conduct a brief study of London and continuing the rest of the year exploring elements of physical geography in the UK.  The Year 7 enquiry questions are What is Geography? (map skills) What is the Geography of London? (local study) Is the Thames the most important river in the world? (rivers) Are storms becoming stronger and more frequent? (weather) Where can you buy a house for £1? (coasts) How dangerous is the UK? (Tectonics) Why is the North of the UK higher than the south? (Geology of the UK). These enquiries are sequenced thematically so that students are able to make links between the various topics and continually build on their knowledge of the physical landscape of the UK. For example, we have chosen to teach rivers after London to build on the work that has already been done on the Thames and we have chosen to teach weather prior to coasts as this knowledge is needed to understand why the coastline is eroding at such a rapid rate.  We have chosen to teach the geology of the UK after tectonics because students will have an understanding of volcanic eruptions and therefore why some parts of the UK have areas of igneous rock whilst others don’t. 

In Year 8 students progress on to more global issues that are focussed on the interaction of humans and our planet. These include How many people can the Earth cope with? (population) How has Geography shaped History? (Past and current climate change) Should I care about the tropical rainforest? (tropical rainforests) Why is the Taiga being destroyed? (Taiga forest) Does Globalisation bring more problems than benefits? (Globalisation) Which way should India develop?  (Development) These topics have been intentionally chosen to allow students to gain a unique insight into different cultures and how they interact with the environment. Students will develop their ability to explain the effect that different human and physical processes can have on the environment and evaluate the sustainability of how humans are using different environments around the world. We have chosen to start the year with the population topic because all subsequent topics are closely linked to the fact that the population is rising exponentially.  Students need to be aware that current climate change is a result of our actions and therefore we go straight onto look at past and present climate change to ensure they understand the importance of upcoming topics. The Taiga forest is taught directly after the tropical rainforest to allow them the opportunity to compare the similarities and differences between the two biomes. India is taught after the globalisation topic to prepare students for GCSE Geography where they are expected to apply their knowledge to an in depth study of a particular place.  

In Year 9 students will apply their knowledge from Year 7 and Year 8 to specific places such as India, Mumbai, London, USA, Haiti and the Philippines whilst studying What are the challenges and opportunities of rapid economic development? (development) How are cities changing over time? (urban challenges) Why are some countries more at risk than others? (hazardous earth). In Year 10 and 11, students who have selected to continue studying Geography work through GCSE content through a study of the UK’s evolving human and physical geography (including urban and coastal fieldwork), People and the biosphere, Forests under threat and Consuming energy. Topics are taught in this order as the skills required in each topic become progressively harder to master. Whilst development, urban challenges and hazardous earth are mostly factual topics where students need to be able to evaluate/assess/classify the Year 10 and 11 topics require students to be able to conduct fieldwork/ decision make/ problem solve/ use GIS.  

Students will apply geographical knowledge, understanding, and skills creatively to real-world contexts, including fieldwork, and to contemporary situations and issues so that they will be able to develop well-evidenced arguments. Students will undertake their fieldwork in Stratford (human fieldwork) and Walton on the Naze (coastal fieldwork) as they have two contrasting areas so the students are able to compare their data and they are close to school which allows them to have more time to collect their data. We have chosen to conduct this fieldwork at the end of year 10 because fieldwork requires a level of independence that very few students will have experienced in Key Stage 3. Further to this, the exam in the summer will require students to refer/think back to these field trips and it is key that they remember them as best as they can and have had the opportunity to get through the content so that they feel confident with the processes and concepts needed to conduct the fieldwork.  

As part of their learning, students will develop integrated geographical skills, including mathematics and graphicacy, in order to explore challenging geographical questions and issues. This gives students the opportunity to lay a foundation of knowledge and understanding that can be further developed at A Level and beyond. 

The key themes that are regularly visited throughout the 5 year journey are sustainability and processes of change. We have chosen these key themes because they are key for students to be able to form judgements and debate topical issues. 

Throughout the curriculum, students are also explicitly taught the disciplinary knowledge required to be inquisitive and articulate Geographers. Pupils will gain and practise challenging skills through fieldwork, GIS, graphicacy, data investigations as well as essential problem-solving skills including relational thinking, classification and decision making.  

For further details on the Geography Curriculum please click the relevant button below

5 year overview

 

Year GroupCurrent Medium Term Plan
Year 7Medium Term Plan
Year 8Medium Term Plan
Year 9Medium Term Plan
Year 10Medium Term Plan
Year 11Medium Term Plan

 

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