Geography is essentially about understanding the world in which we live. It helps to provoke and provide answers to questions about the natural and human aspects of the world. At Abbots Ripton, children are encouraged to develop a greater understanding and knowledge of the world, as well as their place in it. Our intent, when teaching geography, is to inspire in children a curiosity and fascination about the world and people within it; to promote the children's interest and understanding of diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth's key physical and human processes. Furthermore, a fundamental element of working geographically is the notion of physically venturing out into the world and exploring the processes of our planet through practical fieldwork investigations.
Implementation (Teaching and Learning)
We teach the National Curriculum, supported by the Cornerstones Curriculum Maestro resource which gives us a clear skills and knowledge progression. This ensures that skills and knowledge are built on year by year with existing knowledge checked at the start of each new unit of learning. This ensure that teaching is informed by the children's starting points and takes account of pupil voice.
We teach Geography through discrete geography lessons along with some cross-curricular elements when appropriate.
Impact (Assessment and Recording)
Geography is recorded in Geography books and/or folders. In KS1 this may include a Geography Learning Journey which collates the learning journey for the class where there is little individual evidence in the form of written responses. Some of the evidence may involve photographs or teacher's notes.
Teachers assess by making observations of the children working during lessons; listening to their responses and observations as well as looking at the work that they produce. As part of our assessment for learning process, children will receive verbal feedback as appropriate in order to aid progress in the subject. Children are also encouraged to be critical of their own work, highlighting their own next steps. After each topic, teachers assess ‘outliers’ as those who have not gained the planned knowledge and understanding and those who have gone beyond this. A summary of these is collated at the end of each academic year.
All Geographical lessons/activities are designed and planned to include all children through a range of approaches. This could include the pre-teaching of the language of geography for example language which could cause confusion eg mouth of a river as well as terms specific to geography such as erosion. A working wall for Geography may also be utilised with pictorial representations of vocabulary, images, maps or objects to make the learning more accessible.
Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development and British Values
Geography should also give an opportunity for children to marvel at the awe and wonder in the world including different weather, seasons and landscapes. Children may also have opportunities to imagine what it might be like to live in other parts of the world which are different to ours - areas suffering natural disasters or extreme climates for example.
Human Geography in particular offers opportunities to cover and embrace British Values. The Values of ‘Mutual Respect’ and ‘Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs’ are concepts that can be addressed through looking at different parts of the world, collaborative work during fieldwork develops respect for each other; the development of respect for the environment – and those within it – will be covered through discussions, and the appreciation of similarities and differences will be covered though the exciting nature of Geography as the study of the World.