Subject Leader - Mr Kevin McGoldrick
At St. Pius X we believe in a broad and balanced curriculum. Our ambitious geography curriculum fulfils the National Curriculum requirements and we use the Connect Geography scheme of work as a tool to help us deliver the objectives. The scheme of work is coherently planned, sequenced and has rigorous progression to enable children to reach their full potential as geographers and gain the knowledge and skills required through an enquiry based learning approach to allow pupils to succeed in life. Our skills progression allows teaching and learning of geography to be easily adapted to meet the needs of all our pupils. Geography has meaningful links to other subjects such as RE, history, PE, and art and design, science as well as our local area. As a Catholic school our faith underpins our key teachings and pupils learn the importance of caring for and appreciating God's world, including our local area. Our core Gospel Values are golden threads of our geography scheme: we aim to develop the children’s love the world around them, teach children the importance of service by being God's stewards of the earth and highlight the significance of justice through enquiries such as fair trade. This approach helps to expand our pupils social, moral, spiritual and cultural development. Our geography curriculum not only develops our pupils educationally, but we plan in experiences to develop our children's cultural capital such as trips and residentials to Manchester, Coniston and London, as well as trips to our local area including the woodland trust's How Tun Woods as well as visiting local beaches, as we are lucky to be located near the coast.
Geography units are taught over a whole term in Key Stage 1 and every other half term in Key Stage 2 . Our teachers tailor the Scheme of Work to meet the needs of our pupils as well as matching it to the school's context.
Long Term Plan
National Curriculum Coverage
The Medium Term Plans below designed to clearly highlight the following:
- Exactly what the pupils are going to know at the end of the enquiry;
- The disciplinary thinking skills of the subject that they are going to apply in order to understand the significance of that knowledge;
- End points of learning that make clear the level of understanding necessary for a child at this stage of learning to be judged through assessment as making good progress;
- How new learning is built upon the continuity of previous knowledge and understanding so references and links can be made to prior learning where relevant;
- The particular subject techniques and/or sources that will be mastered and applied to help build knowledge and understanding;
- How the National Curriculum programmes of study are being delivered;
- A statement on SEND informed by our SEND policy and provision.
Our Knowledge Organisers (see examples below) function as an enquiry ‘place map’ and are referred to regularly in class. The Knowledge Organisers make it crystal clear to the pupil what they key knowledge they will learn by the end of the enquiry, the vocabulary they will learn, as well as a range of other relevant material they will come across and other things they will do e.g. ‘places I will visit’, ‘people I will know more about’ etc.
Each enquiry in Connected Geography includes key vocabulary (examples on Knowledge Organisers above). We sometimes teach discrete vocabulary using 'vocabulary word maps’ or ‘vocabulary word boxes’. Formats can be seen below.
At the end of each enquiry, staff will assess each child against the year group learning goals (see below). Staff use formative assessment to assess against the end of enquiry learning goals on ScholarPack to make a termly summative judgement.
In addition, for each enquiry there is an assessment sheet which details the characteristics of a pupil who is working towards, working at or exceeding age related expectations (working at greater depth). Drawing on the evidence built up through the enquiry, a ‘best fit’ judgement for each pupil can now be made. A holistic approach is taken at this point. Separate assessment criteria is not be judged in isolation. The essential thing is for teachers to draw on their professional knowledge and judgement of each pupil – what they now know, understand and can do - gathered over the lifetime of the enquiry when making their summative judgement.
The scheme of work for each enquiry provides advice on the kind of things pupils might do to provide evidence of their achievement. Suggested activities are wide ranging valuing equally oral, written, creative, graphical, and practical and computer-based outcomes as well as, of course, day to day teacher observations of, and interaction with, pupils. Gaining such evidence of pupil achievement in this way should be a formative and ongoing process and a means of building a picture of performance over the lifetime of the enquiry.
Enquiry Assessment Sheets
Enrichment & Cultural Capital
We aim to constantly improve our enrichment and cultural capital offering in Geography. Currently, the the subject is enhanced by the following:
- A number of cross-curricular opportunities particularly in PE and History
- Travel on local transport, visiting different areas of our town
- Family events in the local area during evening and weekends (Movember: Dads and Lads walk, Easter parade to church, Family Fun at How Tun Woods, run in the local park (5k) for dementia, etc)
- Newsletter Challenges that involve tracking your route on a map
- Orienteering Club & Competitions
- Laudato Si Club
- Access to maps and globes throughout the learning environment - physical and digital (indoor and outdoor)
- National Bird Watching Week
- Forest Schools (EYFS)
- Journey Sticks (EYFS)
- Termly Seasonal Walks in How Tun Woods (EYFS & KS1)
- Visits to Local Area (How Tun Wood, Slag Bank, Barrow Park, Furness Abbey, Amphitheatre, Beach)
- Trips link to Geography Topic inc. Beach
- London: London Eye
- London: Walk around the Central London (guided tour)