The Geography Curriculum at St Thomas'
Knowledge Rich and Academic
Our geography curriculum builds foundations for children to know where we are and know what is there, giving us a sense of location; to understand the spatial layout, locations and organisation of the world and recognise the spatial distributions, landscape patterns and relationships in the environment.
A coherent, sequential knowledge and understanding of spatial sense enables them to use core knowledge to talk confidently about a range of places in Britain and the wider world.
The geography curriculum builds upon prior knowledge in a carefully sequenced curriculum, both within and between year groups, and makes links to other subject areas.
Pupils develop an understanding of key substantive concepts (maps, location, size, scale, view, landscape, country, city, place, environment, physical, human and climate) that act as threads throughout the geography curriculum from the beginning to the end of the pupils’ primary education.
Reading and Vocabulary
We explicitly teach subject-specific vocabulary for children to learn and apply during our lessons. Subject specific vocabulary is referred to throughout lessons and has been planned to ensure progression throughout the school.
Children are given opportunities to develop life skills and coherently articulate geographical knowledge, skills and understanding by using explicit subject specific vocabulary with reading being at the heart of each geography lesson.
Through our embedded Christian values in geography, global citizenship takes forward an understanding and appreciation of places, their importance to us and develops our sense of stewardship for our world.
With responsibility as a core Christian value in geography, this enables pupils to explore the awe and wonder of the world God created and to have an appreciation for our world, places and the importance of preserving God’s creation and the environment. Our curriculum allows us to explore poverty and injustice for other countries and pray for those who are less fortunate than ourselves.
Each of our teaching units cover a wide range of continents, countries and cultures from the local to the global. Children are given opportunities to learn about life in different cultures and countries and past civilisations. Our curriculum allows children to learn about world development through studying a variety of maps that help them to understand data about place, people and the environment. They understand that development factors around the world are uneven, such as wealth distribution, food consumption, literacy skills, life expectancy and what countries have access to clean water.
Experience and Life Skills
Through our geography curriculum we aim to broaden horizons by providing trips and residential visits to allow children to experience life in all its fullness. Children have first-hand experiences and opportunities to visit rivers, climb mountains and study landscapes, exploring and studying both human and physical geography in the immediate environment around them. Trips and experiences are attended by all pupils to allow them to gain these life skills to unlock future success. These trips enable children to confidently interpret and use maps, recognise symbols, keys and features and apply their knowledge of scales and grid references.
Our curriculum helps pupils gain skills to be able to utilise maps in ‘seeing’, understanding, interpreting, recognising symbols and features, from the local to the global; by providing opportunities to develop and enhance the core skills to do so.
At St Thomas’, we deliver an ambitious, knowledge-based geography curriculum that aims to inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about their own locality and the wider world. Excellence is displayed through the high standards of teaching and learning of the geography curriculum. Teachers are provided with subject specialist teacher knowledge resources for each lesson to enable them to be confidently equipped with knowledge and teach quality geography lessons. Knowledge is made accessible to enable all pupils to access the curriculum, make progress and be provided with equal opportunities in their learning in order for each child to flourish.