At Greenlands Primary School all children, including those who are disadvantaged and children who have SEND learn whole school and subject specific concepts through learning about a variety of geographical topics across the school.
Geography underpins a lifelong conversation about the earth as the home of humankind
- The Geography Society
What Geography Looks Like At Greenlands Primary School
All learning at Greenlands is driven by our school vision to create Resilient, Reflective, Independent learners who aspire to be the best that they can be.
This encompasses our core values for the school and supports the core curriculum values to embed learning in to children for life.
The teaching of Geography at Greenlands Primary School is underpinned by the National Curriculum and the Greenlands Knowledge and Skills Progression Document. Knowledge and Skills have been arranged within subject specific themes.
Vocabulary for each topic is identified and explicitly taught to address the recognised ‘word gap’ that exists for many of the children that attend Greenlands Primary School. Each geographical topic begins with a ‘hook’ to engage the children and a key question which provides the focus for the topic and gives the topic purpose. Children will share their learning for both geographical topics by producing a short programme for ‘Greenlands Geographic’. This takes place at the end of Autumn term 2. The continued revision of whole school concepts and subject specific themes, alongside regular revisiting of previous learning will enable children to know more and remember more.
Concepts and Themes Running through Geography
Subject Specific Concepts
- Space and Place
- Scale and connection
- Proximity and distance
- Relational thinking
Whole School Concepts
- Change – landscape, population, climate
- Power – volcanoes, weather
- Diversity – climate, vegetation, fauna, bodies of water, landscape
- Comparison – weather, population, places
- Significance – Places, Features
- Cities, countries and continents
- Climate zones
Geographical Enquiry Skills
- Direction / Location
- Drawing Maps
- Using Maps
- Scale / Distance
- Map Knowledge
- Locational knowledge
- Human and physical geography
- Place knowledge
Whole school overview
Early Years Foundation Stage
Foundation Stage geography is where children begin to gain a wider experience of the world around them. Children learn through first-hand experiences about the diversity of creatures, people, plants and objects in their natural environment. They investigate change in the seasons and the weather, and explore the power of rain and wind. This gives children a good foundation for their science work in year 1 when they complete an investigation over time about the weather.
During the topic ‘House Hunters’ children explore their familiar environment, the place where they live which is significant to them. They make simple comparisons between their house and the houses of others so that they can answer the question ‘How are our houses similar and different?’. They are encouraged to comment and ask questions to find out more and to develop their understanding of the things they see. They record their findings, through drawing, writing, and modelling.
Key Stage 1
We begin the year with Geography as this is a concrete subject that children can easily relate to, and build other learning from.
Children begin their geography learning in Autumn 1 by looking at their immediate surroundings, their school. This is real life for pupils and something to which they can easily relate. Children compare different areas of the school and explore the different uses of the rooms. Children then expand on this learning by exploring London. Children identify significant human and physical features in London, while answering the question ‘Why is London a capital city?’ This will give children a good understanding of London in preparation for their study of the historical event ‘The Great Fire of London’ in Spring 2.In Autumn 2 children then widen their geographical understanding further by investigating the four countries of the UK and answer the question ‘Where in the world do I live?’ During this topic children compare the position of the four countries using maps, and identify significant cities of the other countries of the UK and investigate the diversity of these countries.
Children begin their geographical learning in Autumn 1 by investigating rainforests. During this topic children answer the question ‘Why does it rain in a rainforest?’ Children explore the diversity of fauna and floras found within different layers of the rainforest and investigate the significance of the climate in these areas which builds upon the weather learning in reception and year 1.
Children then move on to apply the knowledge gained about rainforests when they compare Darenth with Madagascar – an island which is covered by over 20% of rainforest. During this topic children expand their understanding of their surroundings by exploring their local area before completing a comparison of these contrasting areas by exploring geographical similarities and differences. Children answer the question ‘What would I pack in my suitcase if I travelled to Madagascar? Would it be the same as I need at home?’. Children also get to look at change and power through the lens of deforestation.
Key Stage 2
Children continue to build on the knowledge and skills acquired in KS1 by exploring rivers in detail as a key geographical feature. They answer the question ‘If water is flowing down a river to the sea, why doesn’t the river empty or run out of water?’ Children learn about the significant features of a river and explore changes in terms of erosion and deposition and landscapes. They also explore the power of rivers when exploring flooding.
Children then use the knowledge acquired about rivers to complete an in depth comparison between the River Thames and the River Seine when they answer the question ‘Where would you rather keep your boat? The River Thames or the River Seine?’ During this topic children will compare and contrast the two areas, analyse evidence and draw conclusions.
Children continue to build on the knowledge and skills acquired in year 3 by exploring coasts in detail as a key geographical feature and answering the question ‘How is a beach made?’ The children learn about the significant human and physical features of a coastal region and how these features are connected. They make connections to the work in year 3 and investigate how the physical features impact the human use of the land. Change, power and diversity are explored in regard to environmental issues e.g. erosion and coastal defences, tourism and fishing.
Children then use the knowledge acquired about coasts to complete an in depth comparison between Brighton and Rio when they answer the question ‘Where would you rather go on holiday Brighton or Rio? Why? During this topic children will compare and contrast the two areas, exploring diversity, analysing evidence and drawing conclusions.
Children investigate the formation of mountains and the associated significant physical and human features of mountainous areas. Children look at power and change alongside the impact of volcanoes and earthquakes on the human geography of appropriate areas when answering the question ‘Why are tourists attracted to dangerous places?’.
Children then use the knowledge acquired about volcanoes, mountains and earthquakes to complete an in depth comparison between the Isle of Wight and Santorini. During this topic children will answer the question ‘Isle of Wight or Santorini? Which island would provide the best quality of life and why?’ Children will compare and contrast the two areas, exploring diversity, analysing evidence and drawing conclusions.
Children explore climate zones and biomes, they find out what they are, and how they are linked. They answer the question ‘How can I reduce my carbon footprint?’. They then move on to compare two biomes, the Antarctic desert and the Amazon Rainforest and answer the question ‘How is climate change affecting the world?’. During this topic children independently apply the skills already learnt from previous years in order to explain and analyse appropriate data. They explore the diversity of the two areas, changes that have happened over time and the significant human impact on them – including major environmental issues like deforestation and global warming. This topic builds on the children’s understanding of rainforests from year two and previous learning about climate and the weather.