In our ever-changing world, the ability to understand the processes and events happening around us is a useful skill to possess. Geography enables students to make sense of how our planet affects us but also the positive and negative impacts that we have on it in return. With elements of both the arts and the sciences, Geography is a topic that many students enjoy and can easily access and relate to as key themes are constantly in the news. In a time of climate change, fights for natural resources and renewable energy, Geography has never been so relevant nor had such an important part to play in enabling the next generation to cope with these pressures.
Our Year 7 curriculum is designed to give students an insight into the core knowledge and skills required to succeed in Geography whilst featuring both human and physical Geography elements.
The four units studied are:
- Knowing and Shaping the World - students are introduced to the concepts of human and physical geography, learn key map skills and look at how water has shaped our world.
- Global People - students investigate the growth in world population and the pressure this places on countries and communities. Migration and its impacts are also covered unit.
- Great Britain - students use a variety of resources and skills to investigate the country they live in, Great Britain. They explore both its human and physical geography and learn about a variety of key themes such as weather and climate as well as the economy.
- Living Spaces - students look at the differences between rural and urban living spaces and investigate the applicability of settlement models through fieldwork in their local area. They will also study how the London 2012 Olympics regenerated parts of East London.
As part of these units, students will undertake a mixture of individual, paired and group work tasks and include activities such as debates, modelling, GIS and group presentations.
Students are formally assessed, and therefore awarded a National Curriculum grade throughout the year. Typically students will complete one piece of assessed homework during the unit and one exam at the end of each unit. Assessed homework may take the form of an essay, newspaper report, poster, presentation or speech. An NC grade, general comments and a focussed target will be provided by the teacher and will be recorded in an assessment tracker sheet kept in student books. This allows students, parents and teachers to track their progress throughout the year and consider how they may take their work forward.
Independent learning is completed in the form of both lesson prep and homework. Lesson prep is a short task set every lesson that should take no more than 15 minutes for students to complete. In Geography, lesson prep will often form a focus for the next lesson and tasks may include finding out 10 facts about a place, learning key vocabulary, annotating maps and photos or researching a concept, place or event in the news. Prep is a vital instrument in improving time management skills and getting students to engage with events happening in the world around them. Homework is a longer piece of work that should take students an hour to complete. Pieces of work are marked using a mixture of formal assessment, peer, self and teacher feedback.
Geography also runs a number of trips out to allow students to experience ‘Geography in action’ including trips across the UK and a fieldwork investigation in Greenford and it’s locality.