Rationale: 

Our geography curriculum incorporates fundamental geographical knowledge and skills, allowing pupils to build on a firm foundation in future years. It has been organised using a spiral approach revisiting places and topics in ways that build depth of knowledge and understanding. 

Knowledge organisers are shared at the start of every unit. Pupils are taught strategies to help them learn the knowledge and vocabulary that they contain. We also share ideas with parents on how to support their children to learn the content at home. Vocabulary is taught explicitly with opportunities provided for deliberate practice. Pre teaching is used to support any identified pupils to be able to access the age-related curriculum. 

Units move outwards from the familiar to the less familiar. For example, in year 3 pupils learn about villages, towns and cities which are familiar concepts to them. In year 5 pupils learn about biomes and in year 6 globalisation is delivered, concepts that are less familiar. 

An introduction to settlements, tectonic processes and hydrological and climatic processes introduce Year 3 pupils to concepts, vocabulary and knowledge that is capitalised on in subsequent years, laying important foundations of much of their future geographical learning.  

When pupils study Migration in Year 4, they will utilise their knowledge of settlement types in order to deepen their understanding of migration patterns. This knowledge and understanding support their comprehension of why communities develop around areas of rich natural resources, and how slums develop.   

The Natural Resources unit then feeds into the Year 5 unit on Energy and Sustainability, by supporting pupils’ understanding of where energy comes from and how greater sustainability can be achieved.  

The Year 6 units on Population and Globalisation draw on themes that have been explored throughout KS2, so pupils are really able to approach these complex topics with a great depth and breadth of knowledge.  

The Rivers unit in Year 4 follows on from the Water, Weather and Climate unit and pupils then continue to build on this knowledge of physical processes through the Biomes unit.  

The Local Fieldwork unit is in Year 6, so that pupils are exposed to geographical research in KS2. This is a crucial part of a child’s geographical education and we have intentionally incorporated this unit at the end of KS2 to capitalise on their greater maturity and geographical knowledge. 

Each lesson begins with retrieval practise to assess how much pupils have remembered. Each unit ends with an essay allowing pupils the opportunity to write about the knowledge and vocabulary that they have learnt.  

Geography High Level Plan

 Autumn 2Spring 2Summer 2
ReceptionDo you want to be friends?

Why do leaves go crispy?
What’s that sound?

Are carrots orange?
Can I switch it on?

Why do zebras have stripes?
Year 1Geographical Skills

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Tools used by geographers

World’s continents and oceans

Settlements

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Environmental characteristics

Human characteristics

Evidence and Investigation

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Region

Environment

Place

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment
Weather Experts

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

UK Weather patterns

Global climate

Climate change

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Physical processes

Cause and effect

Similarity and difference

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Place

Environment

Sustainability

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment
A Contrasting Locality (Kenya)

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Location of Kenya

African culture

Key physical features

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Environmental characteristics

National and regional culture and identity

Similarity and difference

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Culture

Place

Region

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment
Year 2Building Geographical Skills/Local Fieldwork

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Environment surrounding Nechells

Geographical tools

Features of a map/map drawing

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Development

Environmental characteristics

Human processes

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Urban

Place

Environment

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment
We are Britain

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Four nations of the UK

Physical features of the UK

Man-made features of the UK

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Environmental and human characteristics

National and regional culture and identity

Human and environment interaction

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Culture

Urban

Region

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment
A Contrasting Locality (China)

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Location of China

Key physical and human features

Social and economic dependencies

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

National and regional culture and identity

Environmental characteristics

Similarity and difference

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Culture

Region

Place

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment
Year 3Villages, towns and cities

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Types of settlements

Cities

Distribution of settlements

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Density and dispersion

Development

Human and environment interaction

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Urban

Rural

Socio-economic

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - Where do people live?
Mountains, Earthquakes and volcanoes

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

The structure of the earth

Mountain formation

Volcano formation

Earthquake formation

Impact of volcanic eruption

Impact of an earthquake

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Cause and effect

Physical processes

Environmental characteristics

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Environment

Place

Uncertainty

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - Why do volcanic eruptions and earthquakes occur?
Water, weather and climate

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

The water cycle

UK Weather

Changes in weather around the world

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Change and continuity

Physical processes

Cause and effect

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Environment

Climate

Causation

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - To what extent is the UK’s weather to be expected?
Year 4Rivers

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

River processes

River landforms

Rivers and people

Flooding

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Human and environment interaction

Cause and effect

Physical processes

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Environment

Socio-economic

Causation

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - What impact do rivers have on people's lives?
Migration

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Types of migration

Push and pull factors

Impacts of migration

Economic migration

Refugee migration

Climate change and migration.

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Density and dispersion

Movement

Cause and effect

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Interdependence

Socio-economic

Migration

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - ‘All migrants are forced to leave their home.’ To what extent do you agree?
Natural resources

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Location of resources

Uses of resources

Impact of global resources

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Human and environment interaction

Cause and effect

Change and continuity

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Socio-economic

Interdependence

Causation

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - To what extent is our use of natural resources sustainable?
Year 5Slums

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Development of slums

Life in the slums

Challenges in the slums

Improvements to slums

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Development

Cause and effect

Density and dispersion

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Urban

Socio-economic

Causation

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - ‘The state should shut down all slums around the world’. How far do you agree?
Biomes

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Biomes and ecosystem

Ecosystem influences

Tundra, Taiga and Savanna

Threats to Biomes

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Environmental characteristics

Human and environment interaction

Cause and effect

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Climate

Place

Environment

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - ‘The Earth’s biomes are fragile environments.” To what extent do you agree?
Energy and sustainability

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Energy production

Sustainable cities

Energy security

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Human and environment interaction

Change and continuity

Development

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Sustainability

Interdependence

Uncertainty

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - ‘Humans are not capable of living sustainably.’ To what

extent do you agree?
Year 6Local fieldwork

Powerful knowledge

Content (substantive and disciplinary):

The purpose of fieldwork

Fieldwork strategies

Data presentation and analysis

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Environmental characteristics

Human characteristics

Evidence and Investigation

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Urban

Place

Environment

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - Where do people live?
Population

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Population distribution

Reasons for population change

Population pyramids

Challenges of a changing population

Global food security

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Density and dispersion

Human and environment interaction

Change and continuity

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Socio-economic

Urban

Time

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - ‘A lack of food is the biggest population challenge of our time.’ To what extent do you agree?
Globalisation

Powerful knowledge

Content (mostly substantive):

Communication and trade developments

Impacts of globalisation

Future of globalisation

Themes (mostly disciplinary):

Development

Human processes

Cause and effect

Concepts (Overarching ‘big ideas’):

Sustainability

Socio-economic

Uncertainty

Summative assessment:

Knowledge Assessment

Essay - ‘Globalisation has made the world a better place.’ To what extent do you agree?
 

Geography Curriculum Documents:

Medium Term Plan Geography

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