Geography

Geography  

Hi there,

My name is Ms Ryman and I am the leader of Geography at Laycock.

I believe that Geography assists students in developing their own understanding of the world around them and their place within it, such that they become active and informed citizens. It allows students to discover and understand interactions between natural and human environments and to understand how these interactions change over time and place. Students will explore their world and learn that they have the ability to influence its future.


Intent

The Laycock community is diverse in culture and heritage with a significant proportion of its members coming from various locations throughout the United Kingdom and the wider world. The Geography curriculum at Laycock has been designed to reflect this diversity and equip pupils with a sense of curiosity and fascination about the wider world, its people and their place within it as global citizens. We have created a curriculum that assures curriculum breadth coverage, content and structure that enables clear progression in knowledge and skills.  Furthermore, it places careful consideration on the real-world experiences of our entire student population accounting for the deaf provision, EAL and BAME pupils.

Learning in Geography lessons at Laycock will always focus on the pupil and build on understandings from the inside out or the outside in so that pupils are able to develop an appreciation of their own local area and understand how it fits within a much larger geographical context. By structuring learning in this way, the Geography curriculum at Laycock will provide students with lifelong skills and cultural capital that they can use as active citizens in their everyday lives.

Students’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is supported and encouraged. Links will be formed with partner schools which will inspire students to break barriers, understand similarities and differences in different geographical contexts and extend the values which underpin all activity at Laycock beyond the school community. Celebrations and themed days/weeks will deepen pupils’ understanding of the interactions between the physical and human processes in our world and highlight the impact that their actions can have on current and future generations.

In its most basic form, Geography is the world around us that appeals to the senses of our pupils every single day. As such, the curriculum at Laycock will be immersive and allow the students the opportunity to see, hear and feel their learning. Technology and concrete resources will be used in the classroom to strengthen learning and pupils will be given the opportunity to deepen understanding and skills through cultural trips and experiences.


Progression Map

Implementation

At Laycock Primary, we follow the Oddizzi Planning Pathway.  This offers a logical sequence of geographical topics to support progression and curriculum coverage and provides resources to support vocabulary and mapwork development. The Pathway involves three Geography-led schemes each year, each involving 6-8 lessons.

It has been created with a strong sense of enquiry at its heart, inspiring and allowing a child-led approach to learning. It uses the National Curriculum as its reference point, but also takes account of pupils’ context, including their locality. We have used the materials provided as a starting point to enable us to create a curriculum that is bespoke to Laycock.

Our curriculum is designed to enable pupils to accumulate knowledge as they progress. For example, in Year 1’s local area study, children learn basic geographical concepts, knowledge, vocabulary and skills through the concrete experience of a familiar place. This then allows them to make meaningful comparisons with the Zambian locality of Mugumareno Village in Year 2. During Key Stage 2, this knowledge of places feeds into regional studies from the Americas, Europe and the UK. Knowledge becomes broader and deeper as pupils progress and become familiar with an ever-wider range of places. This growing knowledge is also fed by the development of locational knowledge, geographical skills and a growing understanding of human and physical processes. At Key Stage 2, we have not considered it necessary that places in each year should be more distant than in the previous one. Rather, we have taken the view that a growing understanding of varied places and processes around the world should inform a conceptually rich understanding of life in the UK and Europe in Years 5 and 6.



We then introduce the lesson’s Learning Intention (L.I.). Some lessons have an extra LI to incorporate English or Maths where it is appropriate and helpful. This gives the class an extra opportunity to revisit a learnt skill in a core subject and encourages children to understand that skills are transferable.  In addition, we place a huge emphasis on vocabulary and during each lesson we discuss, revisit and introduce new vocabulary. Children are encouraged to read it aloud, spell it, put it into a sentence and challenged to use it throughout the lesson!

At Laycock we also plan for and provide additional opportunities for pupils to carry out fieldwork at least once a year. Fieldwork is structured as an enquiry, with a strong emphasis on geographical concepts and skills, especially mapwork and data collection, analysis and presentation. Opportunities are still taken wherever possible to reinforce geographical knowledge and vocabulary, including locational knowledge through ‘geography in the news’; to use maps, globes and atlases; and to reinforce key geographical vocabulary within other subjects.

Our interactive resource Oddizzi.com also has a section ‘Going Places’ that offers unique films and resources that take children on virtual class trips to places such as Antarctica and Everest Base Camp.


Assessment

At the end of each topic, children need to demonstrate their knowledge and skills and to be able to “communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length”.

At Laycock, pupils' learning is assessed by activities in the form of writing challenges pitched at the appropriate age group. Supporting each challenge is a series of prompts for pupils which serve as a scaffold and are clearly related to the end point learning outcomes. 

For example, as an end of topic assessment for ‘Mountains’ in KS2, pupils would be expected to write an ‘Expedition leader briefing’ for a mountain they have learnt about including: a sketch of the mountain with its features labelled; the mountain’s location (e.g. country, continent, range, nearest city, approximate latitude/longitude); a description of the mountain, including its conditions, climate and landscape and what the expedition should look out for.


Learning Links