At St John Fisher we have a thematic approach; geography will be interwoven, wherever possible, and therefore taught through art, design technology and music. The teachers and subject leads will endeavour to create this cross-curricular link ensuring that vocabulary and concepts are revisited throughout the Foundation curriculum.
Progression in geography throughout EYFS, KS1 and KS2 is based on locational knowledge, place knowledge, physical and human geography, geographical skills and fieldwork. The children progressively learn geography from across the globe, through each termly topic, ensuring that they have covered some of each continent during their time at St John Fisher.
Geography is taught in Reception as an integral part of all their work covered during the year. We relate the geographical aspects of the pupils’ work to the objectives set out in the Early Years curriculum, which underpin the planning for children aged three to five. Geography makes a significant contribution to the SJF objectives of developing a child’s understanding of the world through activities such as finding out about different places, habitats and investigating the locality.
Key Stage 1
During Key Stage 1, pupils investigate their local area and a contrasting area in the United Kingdom or abroad, finding out about the environment in both areas and the people who live there. They also begin to learn about the wider world. They carry out geographical enquiry inside and outside the classroom. They are encouraged to ask geographical questions about people, places and environments, and use geographical skills and resources, such as maps and photographs.
Key Stage 2
During Key Stage 2, pupils investigate a variety of people, places and environments in the United Kingdom and abroad. In accordance with the National Curriculum, pupils will focus their study on the United Kingdom, Europe, North and South America. They find out how people affect the environment and its secondary impact. Pupils carry out geographical enquiry inside and outside the classroom. They are encouraged to ask geographical questions, and use geographical skills and resources, such as maps, atlases and aerial photographs. Children will develop geographical enquiry skills; collecting and recording information; developing suitable vocabulary; using fieldwork techniques and maps, plans and atlases. Pupils will use secondary sources of information with accuracy, including aerial photographs, satellite images, etc.
The school uses a variety of teaching and learning styles in geography lessons. We believe in whole-class teaching methods and combine these with enquiry-based research activities. We encourage children to handle artefacts and offer them the opportunity to use a variety of data, such as maps, statistics, graphs, pictures, aerial photographs, geographical footage. Children take part in role play and discussions, and they should present reports to the rest of the class.
They should have opportunities to engage in ‘real’ geographical activities, e.g. research of a local environmental problem, visiting relevant sites and carrying out fieldwork. We recognise the fact that we have learners of differing ability in all our classes, and so we provide suitable learning opportunities for all pupils by matching the challenge of the task to the ability of the child. We achieve this through a range of strategies which are differentiated by task, expected outcome and/or support from peers or adults.
Pupils have access in class to multimedia resources and virtual tours of famous monuments and places. Trips and workshops are organised across the school to ensure children are engaging with the content taught.
At the end of their time at St. John Fisher we would like all children to leave with:
- A love for geography and are able to understand the world in which we live.
- Outcomes in geography books should evidence a broad and balanced geography curriculum and demonstrating the children’s acquisition of identified key knowledge.
- The ability to use geographical skills taught in new scenarios particularly through fieldwork and mapping.
- A deep knowledge, understanding and an appreciation of their local area and its place within the wider geographical context.
- An appreciation for the links between geography and history as well other curriculum subjects through our cross-curricular approach.