At Holywell, we are GEOGRAPHERS. We want our children to love geography. We want them to have no limits to what their ambitions are and grow up wanting to be cartographers, town planners, conservationists or weather forecasters.
Our aim is that, through the teaching of Geography, we provide a purposeful platform for exploring, appreciating and understanding the world in which we live and how it has evolved.
We want to ensure that through Geography, pupils are able to explore the relationship between the Earth and its people through the study of place, space and environment. In Geography, pupils in our school will learn the skills of understanding locational knowledge; how and where people fit into its overall structure.
We also intend for children to become passionate and knowledgeable about our local community and beyond, by learning through experiences in practical and fieldwork activities.
Our curriculum design is based on evidence from cognitive science – that learning is most effective with spaced repetition and that retrieval of previously learned content is frequently and regular to increase both storage and retrieval strength.
We want to equip our children with not only the minimum statutory requirements of the geography National Curriculum but to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.
Teachers use the National Curriculum, Ventrus Curriculum Approach and Chris Quigley Companions as a basis for planning. Within this, much of our teaching and learning for geography is linked to other subjects where appropriate but may also be taught discretely.
Our Geography curriculum is designed so that children start with ‘themselves’ and their local area before working out to the UK and the rest of the world.
- Location knowledge and map work are woven throughout all Geography topics.
- We have developed a progression of skills with each year group, which enables pupils to build on and develop their knowledge and skills each year.
- In order to support children in their ability to ‘know more and remember more’, there are regular opportunities to review the learning that has taken place in previous topics as well as previous lessons.
- At the start of each topic children will review previous learning and will have the opportunity to share what they already know about a current topic.
- Effective use of educational visits and visitors are planned, to enrich and enhance the pupil’s learning experiences within the geography curriculum.
- Teachers use assessment for learning at different points in each lesson to ensure misconceptions are highlighted and addressed.
- Effective modelling by teachers ensures that children are able to achieve their learning intention, with misconceptions addressed within it.
- Cross-curricular links are planned for, with other subjects such as Maths, Writing and Computing.
- Educational, immersive displays that answer key questions help to create a rich learning environment for each Geography focus.
- In order to support children in their ability to ‘know more and remember more’ there are regular opportunities to review the learning taken place in previous topics as well as previous lessons.
The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum supports children’s understanding of geography, people and communities through the planning and teaching of ‘Understanding the World’.
Children learn about features of their own environment such as school, home, community and their city through first-hand experiences and learn how environments may differ through the sharing of books, stories, poems, small world play, role play and visits.
Children enjoy the valuable experiences gained from our regular trips to places within their local community such as the village, woods and the coast. Children are given time to discuss, comment and ask questions about what they observe about the world around them and are encouraged to be active learners and explore their interests further.
The impact of this curriculum design will lead to good progress over time across key stages relative to a child’s individual starting point and their progression of skills.
We ensure that children who are achieving well, as well as those who need additional support, are identified, and additional provision and strategies are planned in and discussed with class teachers.
Ongoing assessments take place throughout the year. Teachers use this information to inform future lessons; ensuring children are supported and challenged appropriately.
We work to improve staff knowledge and confidence, leading to a stronger profile in geography and raised pupil achievement.
Our Geography curriculum will lead pupils to be enthusiastic geography learners, evidenced in a range of ways, including pupil voice and their work.