Intent: “Know the Way” 

It is our intention to provide a high quality geography education that inspires in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world. We aim to inspire children to achieve a high level of success in geography and to have high aspirations for their achievement and engagement in the subject at secondary level and beyond.   

Our 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. Pupils will  gain an understanding of how dynamic the subject is due to our planet’s constantly changing state. Through geography lessons pupils will also be able to consider British values. For example, mutual respect, when learning about rainforest deforestation and thinking about our responsibilities to conserve resources and play our part in sustainable development, and tolerance through our understanding and respect for different cultures when learning about different places and people. 

Children will learn to think like geographers, drawing on new and prior knowledge and also making connections between scales, from local to global. Pupils will develop field work skills – collecting and analysing data and communicating their findings in a variety of ways (for example written reports, graphs and maps). Through the programme of study, pupils will use a range of geographical sources of information including: maps, diagrams, aerial photographs and digital mapping to support their geographical enquiries. 

Through our geography curriculum, we intend to foster a life-long curiosity about the world and the people in it. We aim to provide children with strong foundations in the discipline of geography so that they can continue to understand more about the Earth, the geographical processes that are constantly changing it and the human impact upon it.  

Implementation: “Show the Way” 

At Thurlbear Primary school we have created a geography curriculum using units of work from: Planbee, Oak National Academy and Twinkl.  Rather than opting for one scheme, teachers have chosen planning units that: meet the aims of the national curriculum, cover a range of places in the world (both LEDCs and MEDCS) engage Thurlbear pupils and supports their learning experiences across the curriculum. Teachers individualise each planning unit to meet the specific needs of their class. Programmes of study have been mapped onto a whole-school curriculum to ensure a rigorous, high quality geography education is provided to children that enables progression.  

The three main organising concepts of geography are often said to be: place, space and environment. As defined in Primary Geography (the Geographical Association): 

  • ‘Space’ – the location of points, features or regions in absolute and /or relative terms and the relationships, flows and patterns that connect and / or define them.  
  • ‘Place’ – a construct that is defined in terms of what it is like, what happens there and how and why it is changing.  
  • ‘Scale’ – the ‘zoom lens’ that enables us to view places from global to local levels. 

Our lesson sequences are planned to include elements of each of these three concepts within a creative framework, ‘Curriculum making is the creative art of interpreting curriculum specifications and turning it into a coherent scheme of work… it is a creative act that lies at the heart of good teaching’ (Action Plan for Geography, cited in Owens, 2010). 

Geography learning and engagement is also promoted through a range of learning experiences out of school (including for local fieldwork studies) – Benjamin Franklin: ‘Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn’. Throughout our geography curriculum children are given the opportunity to consider ways in which geography links to a variety of current careers including: researchers, meteorologists, conservationists, town planners, geologists, environmental scientists and seismologists.   

Our curriculum map has been designed to build on children’s previous geographical skills and knowledge and the use of geographical vocabulary is integral and progressive within our curriculum. Where relevant, links are made to high quality literary texts that help provide pupils with a context and geographical language through stories and other texts. In particular, stories are used to support early geography skills and understanding in the EYFS. Children have knowledge organisers to support their learning of each topic. There are opportunities within each scheme of work to assess pupils’ knowledge and understanding and monitor the children’s progress.  Formative assessment is used to address misconceptions or gaps in learning. Teachers use subject specific geography criteria to assess learning. 

Impact: “Grow the Way” 

The successful approach to the teaching of geography at Thurlbear Primary School will result in an engaging, knowledge, skill and concept-balanced geography education that provides children with the foundations of an informed knowledge and understanding of the world and its people once they complete their primary education. Children will be equipped with geographical skills and knowledge that will enable them to be ready for the curriculum at Key Stage 3 and to consider their role as global citizens in supporting different communities around the world. 

Children at Thurlbear Primary school should: 

  • Demonstrate enthusiasm and interest in further study and work in this field. 
  • Locate the world’s countries, using maps and identify key physical and human characteristics of countries, and major cities 
  • Name and locate counties and cities of the United Kingdom, geographical regions and their identifying human and physical characteristics 
  • Understand geographical similarities and differences through the study of human and physical geography of different countries. 
  • Describe and understand key aspects of human and physical geography. 
  • Use subject specific language to show knowledge of location, place and geographical processes.  
  • Have strong foundations in geography and fieldwork skills.  
  • Achieve age related expectations in geography at the end of their cohort year. 

Coming Soon…