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Teaching Geography at Haselworth Primary School




At Haselworth, geography education should be fully inclusive to every child.  Our aims are to fulfil the requirements of the National Curriculum for Geography; providing a broad, balanced and differentiated curriculum; ensuring the progressive development of geographical concepts, knowledge and skills; and for the children to develop a love for geography.  Furthermore, we aim to inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Teaching should equip pupils with knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.


Our Geography curriculum aims to inspire and excite our children and develop their appreciation and understanding of the world in which they live and grow. The units of work the children experience will address and allow for the discussion of big issues such as climate change, water security, mega-cities and pollution. The Geography curriculum also seeks to provide opportunities for our children to develop their cultural capital by studying, comparing and contrasting our climate, topography and culture with that of others locally, nationally and globally


How do we teach Geography?


It is essential that the teaching of Geography is based on the needs of individuals in terms of their development. Geography can be accessible for all pupils with support and a clear understanding of how each pupil is developing. At every possible opportunity we aim that our pupils learn through enquiry and exploration of the world around them. Lessons should encourage students to develop alongside key geographical learning, a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives.  


At Haselworth, we aim to provide as many hands-on opportunities for Geography learning as we can, through trips, use of geographically focused upon educational visits, visitors to school and the hiring of topic related artefact boxes.


The aims of teaching Geography in our school are:


  • To inspire pupils’ curiosity to discover more about the world around them at a local, national and international level.
  • To enable children to know about the location of the world’s continents, countries, cities, seas and oceans.
  • To support children in their development of skill in interpreting a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS).
  • To help children understand how the human and physical features of a place shapes its usage, and that this can change over time for a variety of different, and often complex, reasons.
  • To provide cross curricular opportunities to study mathematics, English, P4C and computing through geography lessons.





We carry out the curriculum planning in Geography in three phases: long-term, medium term and short-term. The long-term plan maps out the topic covered in each term during the key stage. The subject leader works this out in conjunction with teaching colleagues in each year group.


Our medium-term plans have been written to link to the themes that are taught in each year group each term/half term. They identify skills that that are taught/practiced by children each lesson and ensure there is progress in these skills each year. We plan the learning in Geography so that it builds upon the prior learning of the children at the appropriate level for the individual.


We give children of all abilities the opportunity to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding in this way so that the children are increasingly challenged as they move through the school.


Class teachers complete a weekly plan for all foundation subjects including Geography. These list the specific learning objectives for each lesson and show brief details of how the lessons are to be taught and children challenged appropriately. The class teacher keeps these plans on a staff shared drive.


At Key Stage 1, pupils should be taught:


Locational knowledge

  • name and locate the world’s seven continents and five oceans
  • name, locate and identify characteristics of the four countries and capital cities of the United Kingdom and its surrounding seas


Place knowledge

  • understand geographical similarities and differences through studying the human and physical geography of a small area of the United Kingdom, and of a small area in a contrasting non-European country


Human and physical geography

  • identify seasonal and daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and the location of hot and cold areas of the world in relation to the Equator and the North and South Poles
  • use basic geographical vocabulary to refer to:
  • key physical features, including: beach, cliff, coast, forest, hill, mountain, sea, ocean, river, soil, valley, vegetation, season and weather
  • key human features, including: city, town, village, factory, farm, house, office, port, harbour and shop


Geographical skills and fieldwork

  • use world maps, atlases and globes to identify the United Kingdom and its countries, as well as the countries, continents and oceans studied at this key stage
  • use simple compass directions (North, South, East and West) and locational and directional language [for example, near and far; left and right], to describe the location of features and routes on a map
  • use aerial photographs and plan perspectives to recognise landmarks and basic human and physical features; devise a simple map; and use and construct basic symbols in a key
  • use simple fieldwork and observational skills to study the geography of their school and its grounds and the key human and physical features of its surrounding environment.


At Key Stage 2, the pupils should extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom and Europe, North and South America. This will include the location and characteristics of a range of the world’s most significant human and physical features. They should develop their use of geographical knowledge, understanding and skills to enhance their locational and place knowledge.


Pupils should be taught to:

Locational knowledge

  • locate the world’s countries, using maps to focus on Europe (including the location of Russia) and North and South America, concentrating on their environmental regions, key physical and human characteristics, countries, and major cities
  • name and locate counties and cities of the United Kingdom, geographical regions and their identifying human and physical characteristics, key topographical features (including hills, mountains, coasts and rivers), and land-use patterns; and understand how some of these aspects have changed over time
  • identify the position and significance of latitude, longitude, Equator, Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, Arctic and Antarctic Circle, the Prime/Greenwich Meridian and time zones (including day and night)

Place knowledge

  • understand geographical similarities and differences through the study of human and physical geography of a region of the United Kingdom, a region in a European country, and a region within North or South America

Human and physical geography

  • describe and understand key aspects of: physical geography, including: climate zones, biomes and vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes, and the water cycle
  • human geography, including: types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water

Geographical skills and fieldwork

  • use maps, atlases, globes and digital/computer mapping to locate countries and describe features studied
  • use the eight points of a compass, four and six-figure grid references, symbols and key (including the use of Ordnance Survey maps) to build their knowledge of the United Kingdom and the wider world
  • use fieldwork to observe, measure, record and present the human and physical features in the local area using a range of methods, including sketch maps, plans and graphs, and digital technologies.


The Foundation Stage


Geography in the Foundation Stage is about people, places and the world around us. In EYFS the children learn focus on their immediate locality and learn about places around their homes, their school and its grounds. They learn about familiar features such as houses, farms and shops building on their everyday experiences. As the reception class follow the Statutory Framework for EYFS, we relate Geography to the development of the children’s Early Learning Goal:  Understanding the World.


Inclusion including Special Educational Needs Disability (SEND) / Pupil Premium / Higher Attainers


All children will have Quality First Teaching. At Haselworth Primary School we teach Geography to all children, whatever their ability. Geography forms part of the school curriculum policy to provide a broad and balanced education to all children. Through our Geography teaching, we provide learning opportunities that enable all pupils to make progress. We do this by setting suitable learning challenges and responding to each child’s different needs. Teachers will also take into account the targets set for individual children in their Individual Education plans as appropriate. In all classes there are children of differing ability. We recognise this fact and provide suitable learning opportunities for all by matching the challenge of the activities to the ability of the child. We achieve this through a range of strategies:


  • setting common learning activities that are open-ended and can have a variety of results;
  • setting learning of increasing difficulty where not all children complete all tasks;
  • setting specific learning according to individual needs and targets
  • grouping children by ability and setting different tasks for each group;
  • mixed ability grouping which facilitates peer support and discussion
  • providing a range of challenges through the provision of different resources and scaffolds;
  • using additional adults to support the work of individual children or small groups.




All teaching and learning of Geography will ensure that every child has the right to be included and supported as far as possible in the knowledge that there is equality in terms of opportunity, social background, race, gender and disability.


Assessment and Recording


Teachers assess children’s work in Geography by making assessments as they observe them working during lessons. They record the progress that children make by assessing the children’s work against the learning objectives for their lessons.


Throughout the unit of work, teachers make a judgement against the National Curriculum statements and the subject’s long term progression of skills on INSIGHT (The school’s data tracking platform used for all core and foundation subjects). A summative assessment for the subject is made at the end of each unit of learning.


Teachers then use the data that they record to plan the future work of each child and to make an annual assessment of progress for each child, as part of the annual report to parents. Each teacher passes this information on to the next teacher at the end of each year.


Health and Safety


Educational visits will be risk assessed as set out in the policy and sent through to the EVOLVE system.




The monitoring of the standards of children’s work and of the quality of teaching in Geography is the responsibility of subject leader. The work of the subject leader also involves supporting colleagues in the teaching of Geography, being informed about current developments in the subject and providing a strategic lead and direction for the subject in the school.


The subject leader has time within school to review evidence of the children’s work and undertake drop in visits of Geography teaching across the school. The following information outlines how subject leaders monitor, evaluate and review their subject.


  • Subject Leaders use self-evaluation and write clear action plans and ensure that they are understood by all those involved in putting the plans into practice, including staff who are new to the school. These are reviewed termly and contribute to the monitoring, review and evaluation of the school development plan.
  • Subject Leaders develop a cycle of monitoring throughout the school for the academic year, ensuring that they can make judgements about the standards within their subject. This includes learning walks, planning and books looks and pupil conferencing.
  • Subject leaders report their impact to Governors via reports or attending FGB to present.
  • Subject Leaders ensure that teachers are clear about the teaching objectives in lessons, understand the sequence of teaching and learning in the subject, and communicate such information to pupils.
  • Subject Leaders ensure curriculum coverage, continuity and progression of skills in their subject for all pupils, including those of high achievers and those with special educational or linguistic needs;
  • Subject Leaders establish a clear, shared understanding of the importance and role of the subject in contributing to pupils’ spiritual, moral, social, cultural, mental and physical development, and in preparing pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life.
  • Subject Leaders use data effectively to identify pupils who are underachieving in the subject and, where necessary, create and implement effective plans of action to support those pupils;
  • Subject Leaders create a climate which enables other staff to develop and maintain positive attitudes towards the subject and confidence in teaching it.