Our high-quality geography education at Meadowside Academy links to our curriculum vision of “nurturing curiosity, courage and kindness.” Through our teaching of geography, we hope that our children will develop a curiosity in finding out about the natural world and different cultures, develop courage and confidence in connecting geographical knowledge in different contexts and using geographical skills, and kindness and tolerance as they learn about people and cultures different to their own.
Our curriculum is guided by the following academic fingerprint, based on the purposes and aims of the National Curriculum for Geography:
- Have secure contextual knowledge of significant places locally, nationally and globally, and be able to identify and locate a range of continents, countries and important cities.
- Have a secure understanding of a range of human and physical geographical characteristics and how these change over time.
- Be competent and confident in the geographical skills needed to: collect, analyse and communicate a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork.
- Have secure knowledge of reading, understanding and creating/drawing maps. They will gain experience of using atlases, globes and aerial photographs.
- Have competent skills to communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.
We aim for all children to access a broad and exciting geography curriculum. Children with SEND, PP and EAL will be given the same opportunities as their peers, and teachers will use a range of methods and scaffolding techniques to support children in accessing the curriculum. Greater Depth children in Geography will be identified, encouraged and challenged.
- While Geography is not taught as a discrete subject in Reception, children follow the Early Learning Goals of People, Cultures and Communities and The Natural World. They spend time exploring and describing their immediate environments, and learn about both the natural world and other countries through stories and books.
- Our Geography curriculum has been carefully sequenced to allow for both progression of knowledge between years, and progression of knowledge within the year. Our Geography learning follows the Elevate Curriculum for Years 1-6, which fully covers the content of the National Curriculum. Key content is revisited in greater detail in later years to allow for retrieval of knowledge.
- Geography skills are also organised to allow for progression. Children gain experience in five skills areas – Geographical Understanding, Geographical Enquiry, Map Skills, Location and Direction and Fieldwork.
- Key vocabulary for each unit is planned for and mapped out in our curriculum. This vocabulary is shared with the children through knowledge organisers and classroom displays.
- All teachers have a clear idea of the knowledge will be acquired and remembered by the children at the end of each unit. Unit Knowledge Organisers are used to share this with children and parents.
- Teachers use retrieval activities every lesson, to assess the children’s understanding of key geographical knowledge.
- The school grounds and local area are fully utilised for fieldwork opportunities. School trips provide further relevant and contextual learning and enrich children’s experiences.
- Teachers assess and adapt their teaching so that every child is able to access the geography curriculum. Teachers use a range of teaching methods to support children in their class including focus groups, scaffolds, ICT support and pre-teaching.
- Children who show a passion and skill for geography are identified, encouraged and challenged. Skilled questioning is used by staff to encourage higher-order thinking.
- ICT is used to support learning where appropriate. Children are given opportunities to research online, and to present their learning through word processing, videos and presentations. Students are also introduced to computer mapping programmes such as Google Earth.
- Students are given regular opportunities to learn about countries and cultures very different from Britain. Teachers are encouraged to adapt teaching plans to include the diverse cultures found in their class. The wonder of the different cultures found in our world is celebrated at events like Culture Week.
Assessment for Geography is based on the key enquiry question for each unit. Teachers will assess using a range of methods. Teacher-assessed grades are given for Geography each term (3 times a year). Teachers use assessment to inform future planning and adapt their teaching for the needs of their class.
- By the end of their time at Meadowside, we want our children to be passionate and curious geographers, who can speak confidently about their learning, and their opinions of it.
- Outcomes in the Big Idea and Humanities books evidence and broad and balanced curriculum, with a clear progression of skills and knowledge.
- All children make good progress from their starting points in Geography, and are supported to reach their full potential. SEND, PP and EAL children enjoy and broad and personalised curriculum.
- Children can talk about their learning with confidence, and are able to remember their Geography learning from previous years.
- Children are increasingly independent thinkers and can generate their own questions to study through fieldwork and observation. They have the skills needed to analyse, interpret and present data effectively and can draw conclusions.
- Children have secure skills in reading a range of maps and atlases to support with locating places and features. They can interpret and understand different keys, scales and map symbols.
- Children leave Meadowside with a solid understanding of some of the diverse people and places around our world and how they are similar and different to us and our local area.
- By Year 6, children will have the knowledge and skills to be able to debate and discuss geographical issues and to be able to reflect and form their own opinions on matters such as climate change and natural disasters.
- Children use our Geography curriculum to become inquisitive and passionate young citizens, who are enthusiastic to protect our communities and the environment.
- They are curious to learn more and are fully prepared for the secondary curriculum.