A curriculum designed for Lyme Community Primary School
GEOGRAPHY – CURRICULUM INTENT
Purpose of study
The primary aim of our Geography curriculum is to provide each student with the knowledge, language and skills needed in order to understand the world around them.
Geography varies from the local environment that the students know well to the distant places that they have little or no previous knowledge about. We aim to take the students from where they are onto a global view of the world.
The study of Geography therefore starts with the students themselves and grows outwards. From this point the curriculum becomes more diverse to include topics on a contrasting UK region, a contrasting region from Australia, as well as studies about rivers, weather, settlement and environment change – linked to eco issues, such as reduced plastic use. Every year group works on an Eco-Strand: this is to ensure our children are at the forefront of global issues and campaigning.
At Lyme Community Primary School, the context of our setting means that it important to immerse our students in a variety of geographical experiences; they will have a wide range of stimuli to enhance their knowledge including geographical workshops, visits from experts and fieldwork. Each geography unit of work taught will encompass ‘WOW’ moments, such a Ranger led walk around the local area, a visit to Liverpool Museum to find out ‘Why the North-West is so important’ and an orienteering experience around the school grounds preceding an outcome to present their learning, such as a video of instructions, a persuasive leaflet or class assembly. This is a valuable opportunity to develop the oracy skills of our children.
In Early Years, their Understanding of the World develops as children take notice of everything around them. At Lyme, the children take part in a walk to the post box within the local area, talking about the environment around them. To develop their understanding of the wider world, the children learn about different countries, for example, during a space topic, when learning Spanish and during Arts Week. The focus of geographical discussions will be personalised to the cohort of children.
In KS1 and KS2, geography is taught through the Learning Challenge Curriculum which promotes answering a BIG question followed by individual learning questions. In KS1, students develop knowledge about the world, the UK and their locality such as ‘Why is Australia called the Land Down Under?’ They compare this locality with the UK. In KS2, students extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the UK and Europe, North and South America. Our aim is to develop the student’s geographical knowledge, understanding and skills to enhance their locational and place knowledge.
As a Rights-Respecting School, we are keen to develop our children’s Global Citizenship, which we do through geography units of work, assemblies, Values lessons and Global Week. We strive for our children to be outwardly-looking global citizens who are knowledgeable, tolerant and educated about the wider world.
At Lyme, geographical knowledge and understanding is presented in a variety of ways using skills taught in English, mathematics, science, computing and art to develop more meaningful learning experiences. We believe children should be taught geographical content through a variety of hands-on learning experiences to develop them as geographers, for example handling artefacts, taking part in educational visits and communicating with children in contrasting localities through a variety of media. The teaching of geographical vocabulary is key for our children.
In the Early Years, children are assessed against the EYFS age related criteria within the strand of Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Understanding of the World.
At KS1 & 2 we use the National Curriculum charted through objective statements to monitor individual pupil progress against the key stage expectations. The system assesses pupil progress against age appropriate descriptors; this enables teachers to monitor which pupils are working towards their age related expectations and who may be exceeding these goals. This information is then used to inform curriculum planning outlining how additional support or challenge can be provided in order to meet the needs of our pupils. This information is also used by teachers when reporting to parents.