In our Federation the teaching of geography inspires in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world. We aim to deliver a high quality geography curriculum which encourages children to be inquisitive learners with regard to the natural world around them as well as the people that live in it.
Geography is important in our Federation because it provides a means of exploring, appreciating and understanding the world in which we live and how it has changed over time. Through geographical enquiry and the application of geography skills, our pupils are given opportunities to develop an awareness of their immediate surroundings, of other places both nationally and internationally, and of how people have used their environment either positively or negatively. We want our pupils to develop respect for people different to themselves as well as for their local and global environment. As pupils study geography, they encounter different societies and cultures, which helps them realise how nations rely on each other. It can also inspire them to think about their own place in the world, their values and their rights and responsibilities to other people and the environment.
The Nar Valley geography curriculum is planned to ensure that substantive geographical knowledge and concepts are taught alongside the development of disciplinary concepts including: place, space and scale; physical and human processes; environmental impact; sustainable development; cultural awareness and diversity. We also ensure that children are taught practical geographical skills which enable them to become 'geographers' including; being able to collect, analyse and communicate data gathered through fieldwork; being able to interpret a range of sources of geographical information; and to communicate geographical information.
At the Nar Valley Federation, children from Y1 to Y6 study three geography units per year. In Years R/1 the children follow units which will develop early geographical knowledge and skills based around the broad National Curriculum themes of Locational Knowledge, Place Knowledge, and Human & Physical Geography. In Years 2 and 3, the children continue to follow units based around Place and Locational Knowledge but also encounter units specifically relating to Physical or Human Geography as well as a unit dedicated entirely to Fieldwork skills. Finally, in Years 4/5/6, the children study three units of geography per year on a rolling programme: one focusing upon place knowledge, another on physical geography and the third on an aspect of human geography. In all classes, we are currently developing the use an over-arching enquiry question to focus our learning in Geography.
In addition to this, we are beginning to implement whole-class retrieval activities at the start of every geography lesson. We believe these retrieval activities will equip our children to develop deep and long-lasting geographical knowledge which will support their understanding of complex geographical concepts. This long-term knowledge is then built upon each year to develop their understanding of the Earth's key physical and human processes, whilst the children are able to consolidate this practically through conducting various local fieldwork activities, further equipping them with a range of geographical skills.
Subject specific vocabulary is embedded within the Geography curriculum allowing the children to understand and apply it within the correct context. From their study of Geography at the Nar Valley Federation, children will acquire a life-long knowledge and understanding of different places, people and processes and use this knowledge to make links across other subjects and areas of study.