Knowing our place in the world, physically, morally and culturally, underpinned by our Christian ethos, allows us to understand ourselves, others and empathise with the situations others are in. Understanding how and why places vary so much is achieved through exploring how our planet works and the risks they pose to people. Combating the issues of rising populations and the exploitation of resources sustainably will allow all people to make informed and ethical choices about how we interact with our environment.
The overarching concepts for Geography at St Michaels Church of England High School are:
- Location – spatial awareness of different countries’ locations and the locations of major physical and human features
- Place – similarities and differences between different areas
- Biodiversity – life exists in all environments, how life adapts to it and how we interact with those environments
- Hazards – physical and human hazards affect people in different ways in different locations.
- Interdependence – how countries and areas are linked through the flow of goods, resources and ideas
- Resource management – how to use our planet’s resources sustainably and equally
- Sustainability – using the resources of our planet without negatively affecting our planet or future generations
- Fieldwork – how we can observe, measure and analyse geographical processes for ourselves, outside of the classroom
- Analytical skills – using mathematical and cartographic skills to describe, interpret and analyse our world via the use of MathsWatch
Learning is embedded through the development of knowledge and skills over time and through overlapping concepts within a blended curriculum based on fertile questions. Assessments combine stand-alone and cumulative assessments in order to assess what has been learnt in the year. Formal Assessments cover all subject matter covered to that point. Progression is mapped coherently against school-based targets. This progression allows for effective differentiation, marking and feedback and to stretch the more-able pupils via STAR challenges. Pupils have access to vocabulary and the practice of maths skills. Regular extended writing allows pupils to develop their language and vocabulary. Pupils have access to study outside the classroom in order to use their skills and knowledge in a practical setting through fieldwork in contrasting localities.
By the end of Key Stage 3, pupils will be able to describe the key physical and human features of a key number of countries, including the United Kingdom and their locations within the World. They will be able to explain how our hydrological environments change over time and are affected by human activity. They will be able to use maps and photographs to both navigate, describe and compare areas across the UK and the world. They will use fieldwork skills to investigate processes and issues and draw conclusions from data. They will make informed choices about how we can power our country and planet sustainably. They will understand how volatile our planet can be through ongoing tectonic and climatic processes, within the UK and across the world, and evaluate the best ways to protect ourselves from these. They will have explored key areas of the world and will debate current issues affecting these areas. They will be able to make informed decisions about how they use resources through exploring extraction, usage and waste created by our actions. They will empathise with people suffering across the planet due to inequality of resource, opportunity and wealth, assess the causes of this imbalance and explain how to reduce the gap. As pupils move through the course, they will become familiar with jobs and roles within the geographical, geological and meteorological industries.
By the end of Key Stage 4, pupils will demonstrate a deeper understanding of aerial, sub-aerial and subterranean processes across our planet, evaluate the impact of these on people and assess the best ways for us to interact with these processes. They will build on skills that allow them to study these processes in the field and use the data they collect to draw conclusions about the conditions of the areas studied and evaluate their own skills. They will analyse the distribution of our key resources, assess the impact on quality of life and explain how we can use these resources sustainably for a growing population. They will demonstrate an understanding of how our population is changing through growth and migration and the impact this has on rural and urban areas across the world.