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Morven Park Primary School We're all unique, together as one

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Geography

Intent 

 

At Morven Park Primary School, we value the important role that Geography plays in the daily lives of our pupils.  The study of geography involves our pupils exploring the relationship and interactions between people and the environments in which they live and upon which they and all life on Earth depends.  Many of the pupils who now attend our school will live to see the next century and inhabit a world of 11 billion people.  The many opportunities and challenges that will arise during their lifetime will be very much about geography at personal, national and global scales.  What we intend pupils to learn in geography reflects this throughout the curriculum. 

The National Curriculum will provide the structure for our geography curriculum. We will follow the aims set out below: 

 

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.  

 

At Morven Park Primary School our geography curriculum aims to deliver a progressively more challenging curriculum from Early Years and Years 1 through 6 both in terms of the complexity of the subject knowledge we want our pupils to acquire and also the critical thinking skills we support them to utilise to ensure they understand the significance of that knowledge. These anticipated outcomes in knowledge and understanding and skills acquisition are detailed in the objectives of the teachers’ planning. In terms of the geographical techniques we want our pupils to master as they progress through the school our curriculum planning has been informed by our identification of the coverage required at Key Stage 1, Lower Key Stage 2 and Upper Key Stage 2.   

 

Our curriculum is built upon and has continuity with the provision for geography established in the Early Years Foundation Stage and in particular that which addresses the knowledge and skills expectations of the People, Culture and Communities Early Learning Goal. 

 It aims to be Inclusive in terms of delivering the same curriculum to all of our pupils irrespective of specific learning needs or disabilities and differentiating where necessary through, for example,  in class support, providing different learning environments, alternative learning activities and assessment outcomes. 

 

Implementation

 

At Morven Park Primary School, we adopt an enquiry-focussed approach to learning and teaching geography, which supports our pupils to become young geographers. We structure learning through the discreet teaching of question led enquiries that are relevant both in places and themes studied. Our teaching promotes questioning from our pupils and critical thinking as they progress through the year groups, building upon knowledge already gained and seeking to further their own curiosity about the world in which they live. Pupils are encouraged to work in pairs and teams and to discuss and interact with the teaching materials provided. Each enquiry has rich vocabulary to accompany the learning, thus our pupils become adept at using such geographical language as they progress through school. 

We provide varied learning opportunities for our pupils including; trips and excursions; maps; GIS; photographs and PowerPoints, equally we assess our pupils in varied ways such as observation when listening to their discussions, photographs, drama and written work to record their outcomes from each enquiry. This supports understanding and through this variety, they are able to acquire the sticky knowledge needed to build upon as they progress through school.  The structure of each enquiry is such that it provides continuity throughout the school.  Each enquiry begins with a question to answer and through the study of the ancillary questions pupils build their knowledge and understanding in incremental steps until they reach the point where they are equipped to then answer the question posed at the beginning of the investigation. 

 

Impact 

 

Each enquiry which forms the program of teaching and learning provides clear learning objectives, which define the anticipated outcomes of the pupils. Teachers make summative judgements based on the assessment criteria suggested in each enquiry.  Essentially each enquiry will enable pupils to  fulfil the requirements to be young geographers, using geographical vocabulary and obtain geographical techniques including fieldwork and mapping skills. 

 

By the end of Key Stage one 

 

In Key stage one pupils working as young geographers will have demonstrated that they can use effectively a range of geographical skills and simple geographical techniques including fieldwork. 

 

Pupils at the expected level of attainment at the end of Key Stage 1 will be able to: 

 

Identify, describe, compare and contrast and offer reasons for the similarities and differences they observe in the physical and human geographical features of their school grounds, the locality of the school and a number of contrasting environments in the United Kingdom and around the world.  In achieving this pupils will have shown a capacity to use accurately a wide range of basic geographical vocabulary together with simple fieldwork, mapping and aerial imagery techniques to observe, present and communicate geographical information.  Consequently they possess a sound locational knowledge of the basic geographical characteristics of the United Kingdom, the wider world (Continents, Oceans, North and South Poles and the Equator) and can also identify, describe, compare and contrast and suggest reasons for daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and contrasting hot and cold locations in other parts of the world. 

Pupils exceeding the expected level of attainment will, in addition to the above, be able to: 

Demonstrate greater understanding by offering more developed explanations (as opposed to reasons) for the location and distribution for some of the physical and human geographical features they observe in their own locality and at contrasting locations.  Furthermore these pupils know in simple terms how  some physical and human geographical processes interact to create distinctive features and influence the behaviour of people.  In doing this they draw upon, and apply, some specialised subject vocabulary and more demanding fieldwork and graphicacy skills outside and inside the classroom. 

 

 

By the end of lower Key Stage 2 

 

In Key stage two our pupils will have built upon previous knowledge gained and be able to demonstrate the use of geographical vocabulary; geographical techniques and have developed critical thinking towards relevant geographical topics and themes. 

 

Pupils at the expected level of attainment at the end of Lower Key Stage 2 will be able to: 

 

Demonstrate geographical understanding by describing and explaining in basic terms the similarities and differences in the physical and human features of their home area and a region in North America, including offering some reasons why both places are changing.  They will also be able to locate, describe and explain some of the reasons for the distribution of globally important physical and human geographical features including  climate zones, deserts, tropical rain forests, earthquakes and the world’s largest urban areas.  Additionally they will also be able to identify, describe and explain the significance on a world map and globe of important lines of latitude and longitude, the Northern and Southern Hemisphere, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn together with the Arctic and Antarctic Circle, the Greenwich Meridien and Time Zones.  They will now demonstrate more detailed locational knowledge of the geographical features of the United Kingdom together with those of the other countries and locations around the world they study through their enquiries.  In achieving the above pupils show they understand and apply some specialised subject vocabulary and use effectively more complex techniques to gather, present and communicate geographical information, including digital technologies, inside and outside the classroom.  

 

Pupils exceeding the expected level of attainment will, in addition to the above, be able to: 

Demonstrate a more sophisticated understanding of how the lives of people around the world are influenced by physical processes and how people can impact the environment positively and negatively.  In doing so they begin to formulate conclusions and make judgements as to the kind of actions people can take to improve and sustain the environment locally and globally. 

 

By the end of upper Key Stage 2 

 

Pupils at the expected level of attainment at the end of Upper Key Stage 2 will be able to: 

 

Demonstrate that they can interpret a range of sources of geographical information including GIS and communicate their knowledge and understanding in a variety of ways e.g. through oracy, maps, numerical and statistical techniques and writing at length.  Through the study of physical features such as rivers and mountains pupils show that they understand how distinct landscapes are formed by natural processes and can make basic informed judgements about some of the challenges and benefits they present to humans.    Pupils show, for example, through investigating the impact of volcanoes in Iceland, the rationale behind Fair Trade and role of National Parks in the United Kingdom that they are able to evaluate information from conflicting viewpoints and perspectives and make their own informed judgments and geographical decisions.    In achieving this pupils use mostly specialised subject vocabulary and techniques to communicate their knowledge and understanding. 

Pupils exceeding the expected level of attainment will, in addition to the above, be able to: 

Make and justify more informed and subtle judgements about geographical issues they study such as the issue of climate change which draws upon some of their own research and ideas.  These pupils will also demonstrate a capacity to on occasion question the validity and trustworthiness of sources of information they use as well as generating further questions of their own to investigate.  Both their oral and written narrative will draw upon a comprehensive range of specialist subject vocabulary and more advanced data collection, presentation and interpretation techniques both inside and outside the classroom. 

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