Geography at Shanklea Primary School


Pupils at Shanklea are encouraged to develop a greater understanding and knowledge of the world, as well as their place in it. Geography is, by nature, an inquiry based subject, which develops an understanding of key concepts, knowledge and skills. The curriculum is designed to develop knowledge and skills, which will support children in the outside world. At Shanklea we ensure that our children develop knowledge and skills that are transferable to other curriculum areas and which can and are used to promote their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. One of our key aims is to inspire children to develop a fascination about the world and its people which will remain with them for the rest of their lives; to promote the children’s interest and understanding of diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.


 Our curriculum is shaped by our school moto and values which aims to work together to ensure we all achieve more. We teach alongside the National Curriculum, supported by a clear skills and knowledge progression. This ensures that skills and knowledge are built on year by year and sequenced appropriately to maximise learning for all children. This can be seen in our geography scheme of work. The local area is fully utilised to achieve desired outcomes, with opportunities for learning outside the classroom embedded in practise. School trips and fieldwork are detrimental, to provide quality first hand experiences, which enhance children’s understanding of the world beyond their locality.


 By the time children leave Shanklea they will: Have an excellent knowledge of where places are and what they are like. Geographical understanding, as well as children’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. Children will have an extensive base of geographical knowledge and vocabulary. Be fluent in complex, geographical enquiry and the ability to apply questioning skills and use effective analytical and presentational techniques. We encourage our children to have a passion for and commitment to the subject, and a real sense of curiosity to find out about the world and the people who live there and be a true geographer.


 Early Years

 Within the Early Years Foundation Stage, geography is included as part of Understanding the World. The children learn to investigate similarities and differences, the local environment and cultures and beliefs, fostering the skills essential to developing historical understanding. This is set out in the early year’s curriculum as children needing to:

 observe, find out about, and identify features in the place they live and the natural world;

 Begin to know about their own cultures and beliefs and those of other people;

 Find out about their environment, and talk about those features they like and dislike.

 Key Stage 1

 During Key Stage 1, pupils investigate their local area and a contrasting area in the United Kingdom or abroad, finding out about the environment in both areas and the people who live there. They also begin to learn about the wider world. They carry out geographical enquiry inside and outside the classroom. In doing this, they ask geographical questions about people, places and environments, and use geographical skills and resources, such as maps and photographs.

 Key Stage 2

 During Key Stage 2, pupils investigate a variety of people, places and environments in the United Kingdom and abroad, and start to make links between different places in the world. They find out how people affect the environment and how they are affected by it. Pupils carry out geographical enquiry inside and outside the classroom. In doing this, they ask geographical questions, and use geographical skills and resources, such as maps, atlases, aerial photographs and ICT. Children will develop geographical enquiry skills, including asking geographical questions, collecting and recording information and identifying different views. They will acquire the appropriate practical skills associated with Geography, including using suitable vocabulary, fieldwork techniques and maps, plans and atlases. Pupils will use secondary sources of information with accuracy, including aerial photographs, satellite images, etc. As well as making its own distinctive contribution to the school curriculum, geography contributes to the wider aims of primary education. Teachers will ensure that links between subjects are maximized, including history, science and computing.


 As we have mixed-age classes, we do the medium-term planning on a two-year rotation cycle. In this way, we ensure that children have complete coverage of the National Curriculum but do not have to repeat topics. See long term plan for Geography on the website. We use Kapow as a basis to our planning however adapt these to suit the needs of children in our class.

 Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural opportunities

 Geography is an excellent vehicle for developing children’s learning in this area. Discussions about the use of the world’s resources and the impact of different events on the lives of local people deepen the children’s ability to understand and empathise with fellow humans across the globe. The opportunities to explore ‘putting yourself in someone else’s shoes’ abound in the study of geography and it is embraced during the teaching wherever possible.

 Role of Co-ordinator

 The Geography co-ordinator leads the maintenance and development of the subject. They are responsible for assuring quality and standards in the subject by:

 Taking the lead in the development, evaluation and amendment of schemes of work as and when necessary.

 Identifying training needs of staff through monitoring and performance management review.

 Acting as a consultant to colleagues on resources, fieldwork possibilities, curriculum changes, classroom teaching ideas.

 Monitoring and evaluating pupils’ work, colleagues’ planning and classroom teaching. Ensuring continuity and progression in learning

 Whilst knowing more is an integral part of continuity and progression it is nevertheless just one element of it and merely sequencing subject content will not ensure on its own that our pupils become better geographers. To ensure continuity and progression for all pupils the curriculum is carefully organised from EYFS – Year 6 to ensure that our pupil’s knowledge and understanding of geography develops because:

 Expected subject outcomes in terms of developing as a young geographer increase in complexity and level of challenge as detailed above and are used as the starting point for all planning of content delivery and learning and teaching enquiries;

 There is increasing breadth and scale of study through the curriculum moving progressively from personal experiences to local, regional, national and global perspectives informed by the guidance of the National Curriculum;

 The curriculum becomes progressively more complex developing from discrete facts and bodies of information to conceptual awareness and generalised knowledge about more abstract ideas;

 The mastery and application of geographical tools and skills occurs in more precise and complex contexts;

 The focus of what pupils learn becomes gradually more issues based enabling them to explain links, patterns and processes and be more informed and mature in their thinking and self-reflection in terms of recognising the importance of attitudes and values about contested matters;

 Record Keeping and Assessment

The Geography co-ordinator will oversee planning and monitor pupil’s work. At the end of each unit, the sticky knowledge, understanding and where appropriate fieldwork skills will be assessed by the class teacher. The teacher will use the assessment documents created for each unit to assess at the end of the unit. At the end of the unit any gaps in knowledge will be identified and will addressed in revisits the following unit. 

 Assessment will be undertaken using the following methods:-

 observation of pupils

 Assessment questions linked to sticky knowledge

 talking with pupils

 marking written work


 peer assessment

 the evaluation of discussion

 Assessment of sticky Vocabulary

 Recording in books

 All pieces of work should have the date and title and underlines with a rule Books should be neat and high expectations set for handwriting. There should be evidence of writing in their books. There should be at least 4 pieces of work in the children's books throughout the topic. Evidence of work differentiated. If the children are working in groups then photographs and photocopies of for examples maps should be in their book. Work marked and up to date.


 At Shanklea we recognise the need to cater for children with special educational needs. Work is differentiated to assist in children’s learning in terms of:

 learning outcomes


 teaching methods


 Tasks can be broken down into small steps, giving children achievable goals. Vocabulary can be pre-taught. Word banks and visual cues can be provided, using symbols and words. Activities should reinforce children’s understanding of the subject. The more able children should be given open-ended tasks and opportunities for further research and more challenging study.


 All year groups have trips planned linked to at least one of tier topics throughout the year.