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Geography

Geography at Red Oak Primary School

Curriculum Intent

At Red Oak Primary, we believe high-quality geography education should inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Geography teaching will equip pupils with knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes. As pupils progress, their growing knowledge about the world should help them to deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, and of the formation and use of landscapes and environments. Geographical knowledge, understanding and skills provide the frameworks and approaches that explain how the Earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected and change over time. We encourage children to enjoy and love learning about geography by gaining this knowledge and skills, not just through experiences in the classroom, but also with the use of fieldwork and educational visits.

The national curriculum for geography aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes
  • understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time
  • are competent in the geographical skills needed to:
  •  collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes
  • interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
  • communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.

Implementation

At Red Oak Primary School; key stage 1 and 2 children cover three geographical topics a year with each of them falling in the second half term of each term. Children engage with Geography once weekly in a discrete session led by the class teacher as well as a fortnightly guided reading session with geographical issues used to stimulate discussion. Geography topics at our school are made up of three sections- place knowledge, locational knowledge and human + physical geography. Place knowledge is all about what places are like and becoming more familiar with our local area. This is an important starting point before making any tangible comparisons to other places. Locational knowledge is investigating where places are and this is used to clarify underlying conceptual understandings of the world in which we  live. Physical geography looks at the natural processes of the Earth, such as climate and plate tectonics. Human geography looks at the impact and behaviour of people and how they relate to the physical world. Each of these sections is used to structure the Geography curriculum and help inform teacher planning to ensure Geography teaching is broad and balanced. This content is mapped out on the geography long term plan showing progression from year to year and this is further seen as the topics from the long term plan are broken into medium term and weekly plans. When each of the sections are revisited in each year group, previous learning is recapped and built upon to provide a clear structure for the children. A knowledge organiser is used in each year group to present essential facts about each topic, 

display key vocabulary or technical terms (with definitions) that children are encouraged to use and understand, images such as maps or diagrams that are pertinent and encapsulate key places. There are concrete links between Literacy and Mathematics within Geography. Teachers regularly use extended writing opportunities to encourage children to share their learning through varied approaches. Within mathematics, children engage with map skills, positional and directional language as well as analysing data when carrying out fieldwork. A fortnightly guided reading session linked to a topical issue allows our children to understand what is going on in the world we live in and naturally the teaching staff use oracy approaches to assist children to use debate and help form opinions about existing issues and conflicts happening in our present time. Through our cross curricular approach children are given the opportunity to continue to utilise and grow Geographical skills. Geography is a subject that contextualises and extends the possibilities for developing and applying language and mathematics, and enriches understanding of, and in, subjects from science and history to art and design.We believe that knowledge and skills progression are integral to a coherent curriculum.

Impact

We believe pupils at Red Oak build on their previous knowledge to progressively build on a deeper understanding to ensure they are suitably prepared for education within secondary school. Our children demonstrate an appreciation and understanding of their local area, places near and far and the processes that create and affect them. We instil consideration of concepts including community, sustainability and cultural diversity that are at the heart of Modern Britain. The children begin to understand the potential of their role and the impact that they might have through their actions and interests, as primary geography takes them beyond their immediate world and what they currently know to deepen their environmental knowledge and nurture their stewardship of places.

At Red Oak, the children are assessed termly in their geography learning and support is put in place for those that are not achieving in line with peers and increased challenge to further extend those that are exceeding expectations. From these assessments, we continually assess how the children are progressing with the beliefs of our intent and adapt our approach to fulfil these ambitious objectives and prepare children for a life-long love and appreciation of how our world works.

Below is a table that shows subject coverage in each year group over the academic year, please click on the PDF for a larger version:

geography 2018

Assessment

At Red Oak Primary School we use the Target Tracker assessment system, along with the National Curriculum materials and teachers’ own individual records to assess each pupil’s achievement at the end of each term and to monitor progress.  The system gives children targets (in form of ‘I can’ statements) that teachers and pupils can assess their progress against. These encourage children to take ownership of their learning and find areas they wish to improve on. The assessments inform us whether each child is below expected, at expected or above expected for their year group.  

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