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Geography

Our Curriculum Aims:  
You can travel the seas, poles and deserts and see nothing.  To really understand the world you need to get under the skin of the people and places.  In other words, learn about Geography.’ Michael Palin.

We want our students to love studying Geography.  Our aim is to engage them in exciting and intriguing Geography lessons that spark a love of the subject that will last a lifetime. 

Geography bridges the Sciences and Huminites.  Our key stage three curriculum has been designed to span the breadth of the subject and introduce students to a wide range of knowledge and skills through carefully selected topics.  By key stage four and five our students have excellent foundations and are ready to study the subject at a higher level, with more theoretical ideas and greater depth.

Geography is an avenue in which to study and understand some of the biggest global issues of our time.  We aim to inspire in our students a sense of responsibility towards our earth and the people and places within it.  We encourage our students to think critically and ask questions.  Within each topic students are challenged to demonstrate a range of skills to show they have understood the content they have learned.  For example, assessments include group presentations, designing a cart, making decisions about how to solve problems in a slum, producing a model and making a map.  It is our aim to support students in developing a wide range of skills and abilities to better enable them to understand their world, for their Geography studies and beyond. 

Fieldwork is an essential part of the study of Geography, and it is our aim to equip students with the skills to carry our fieldwork in Human and Physical Geography, through trips to Salford Quays, the Lake District, Ancoats and Altrincham.  Students are also expected to use ICT to analyse and present conclusions, use these to draw conclusions and evaluate the process.  The aim with our fieldwork studies is to give students an insight into the importance of primary research and the role of secondary data to further inform findings.  Students use Geographical Information Systems from key stage three, to enable them to better understand the role of data in understanding geographical ideas.  These skills are vital for higher level study in Geography and other subjects, and they enable us to help students to see the power of research in making meaningful changes to the world. Our aim is that by Key Stage Five students can design and conduct a piece of independent fieldwork.


The Department Subject Achievement Map identifies the skills and knowledge acquisition needed to progress in the subject from year 7-11. 
For each topic studied in Years 7 and 8, Topic Descriptor Sheets detail the knowledge and skills needed to progress in that topic.  Topic Descriptor Sheets are shared with students at the start of every topic. 

Key Stage Three Curriculum Content
Year 7

 

Name of topic

Key Content of the Topic

Assessment points

HT 1

Geography of Britain

Pupils develop their understanding of the key physical and human attributes of Britain.  Wider place knowledge is acquired using maps of various scales.  Key geographical skills such as questioning and source interpretation are developed.

Benefits & issues of migration to Britain

HT 2

Shipwrecked

Pupils develop their map-based skills, whilst learning how to survive on a remote tropical island and refine their decision-making abilities.  Pupils develop a range of essential skills in the process.

Map based decision making exercise

HT 3

Africa

 

 

Students study the diverse the African continent.  Ranging from its physical landscape, how past decisions have shaped twenty first century Africa and the opportunities and challenges the continent currently faces.

Describing and explaining the characteristics of tropical rainforests.

HT 4

Tourism

 

In this topic students learn about the evolution of tourism, it’s global economic importance and how the industry is striving towards more sustainable models of tourism.

An assessment of the Butler model in relation to Blackpool.

HT 5

 

Weather and climate

In this topic students study about different types of weather, the difference between weather and climate and how to measure the weather.  Pupils study meteorology and carry out their own practical investigations around the school site.

Infiltration rate enquiry.

HT 6

 

Year 8

 

Name of topic

Key Content of the Topic

Assessment points

HT 1

 Biomes

Pupils study the distribution of global biomes and then go on to an in-depth study of the tropical rainforest biome – including its unique characteristics, climate and the threats it faces.

Sustainable rainforests assessment

HT 2

Superpowers

A study of the race between China and India to become dominant global superpowers - and to complete the global shift from the USA and Europe towards Asia.  Pupils compare the characteristics of China and India, investigate their economic growth and implications of rapid change.

Improvements to shanty town shelters.

 

HT 3

 Coasts

A focus on Britain’s dynamic coastline.  A study of physical landforms and processes.  Students also investigate environmental and coastal management issues with a focus on climate change. 

Coastal management decision making.

HT 4

Russia

Students study the physical and human characteristics of Russia and assess current threats facing Arctic and tundra regions.

Scientific factors affecting cold environments.

HT 5

HT 6

Rivers

Pupils investigate the hydrological cycle, the characteristics of local rivers including the Bollin, classic river landforms and issues around flood risk. 

Summer exam

Year 9

 

Name of topic

Key Content of the Topic

Assessment points

HT 1

Population Explosion

Contemporary demographic issues are studied by pupils.  Including the causes and impacts of migration, the significance of Africa’s population growth and issues facing Europe connected to a decline in fertility rates.

An assessment of the demographic transition model.

HT 2

Cotton to Culture

In this topic students investigate Greater Manchester and undertake an enquiry into urban regeneration at Salford Quays, including a day field trip.

Enquiry into the success of regeneration at Salford Quays.

HT 3

Plate tectonics

Students investigate plate tectonics and learn about the continental drift theory.  Includes the causes, impacts and management of volcanoes and earthquakes

Explanation of plate tectonics – written assessment.

HT 4

Development

Pupils study global inequalities and potential solutions to the development gap between more developed and developing countries, with a focus on Morocco.

A design assessment of a cart – to aid development in Morocco.

HT 5

HT 6

Middle East

Students study physical, human and political issues facing the middle east region.  Project based work on topical issues e.g. Syria, sustainability of the 2022 World Cup and tourism strategies being adopted by the UAE.

Year 9 Exam

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WhWhat can parents do to support their sons?

  • Purchase Progress in KS3 Geography, Hodder.  ISBN 9781510428003
  • Encourage students to take an interest in current affairs and discuss with him links to topics he is studying in Geography.  Read an online newspaper twice a week, with a focus on environmental and geo-political issues;
  • Follow AGSB Geography on twitter
  • Geographers should be inquisitive, parents can encourage students to research different places that they visit as a family.
  • Buy the following atlas Collins Cambridge IGCSE Student World Atlas for your son to use at home.  (ISBN 978-0-00-744305-5).  We use these in school and highly recommend them to students.

Students will receive written feedback at the end of each Geography topic in addition to knowledge tests and the end of year examination. The assessments will range in style and content. As an example, in Year 7 pupils justify a location to build an emergency shelter, in Year 8 pupils decide how to best protect the Holderness coastline within a budget of £1m and Year 9 pupils write a geographical enquiry to investigate the regeneration of Salford Quays.


GCSE Course Followed: Geography

Specification: Edexcel A (Syllabus code – 1GA0)

Why Choose GCSE Geography?

  • Geography focusses on understanding and finding solutions to current issues which span the globe, such as climate change and migration.
  • Geography is a core facilitating subject for the prestigious ‘Russell Group’ universities. 
  • Visits to interesting places!  GCSE students go on two field trips, to Snowdonia and Ancoats in Manchester.
  • Physical Geography strongly links with Science, Maths and Geology. 
  • Human geography complements Economics, Arts and other Humanities. 

Geographical Skills - Geography is highly relevant and prepares students for their future – students develop transferrable skills that open up interesting employment paths.

Who should take GCSE Geography? – Those with an interest in global issues and an inquisitive mind – you will be learning about the world you live in, such as the climate crisis and mass migration.

“The study of Geography is about understanding the complexity of our physical and human world, and appreciating the diversity of cultures that exist across continents”.   Barack Obama

Careers - Geographers find a huge variety of opportunities and have some of the best graduate employment rates in diverse fields including: Banking, Insurance, Accountancy, Investment, Law, Medicine, Media, Economic development, Surveying, Architecture, Civil Service, Charity and NGOs, Cartography, Environmental Consultancy and Coastal/River engineering. Watch this video to hear from real world Geographers and what they love about their job!! Link 

 


 Key Stage Four Curriculum Overview

The GCSE course is both relevant and exciting, and there are typically 3 or 4 Geography groups per year group.  We follow the Edexcel (A) Specification.  Geography provides pupils with the opportunity to develop a greater knowledge and understanding of some of the most important places and prominent issues facing society today.

A range of places and geographical issues are studied at different scales (local, regional, national and global). Examples include development issues in sub-Saharan Africa, the impact of meteorological hazards such as hurricane Sandy and studies of dynamic world cities in emerging countries, such as Mumbai.

Pupils develop a wide range of skills throughout the GCSE course, including literacy, numeracy, data collection and data presentation, understanding of values and attitudes, teamwork, problem solving, decision making and use of information and communication technology.

Fieldwork is used to support learning in Geography.  Pupils participate in a day fieldtrip to investigate river characteristics and flood risk in Snowdonia, and a day fieldtrip to Ancoats, Manchester.

Year 10

 

Name of topic

Key Content of the Topic

Assessment points

HT 1

T1 Changing UK Landscapes – Geology, Rivers and Glaciation

Explore how different landscapes of the UK have been shaped over time by both Physical processes and Human activity.

Geology of UK Trial Exam

HT 2

Understand how different landforms along a river course are formed and how human activity and climate change impact on these natural environments.

Rivers Trial Exam

HT 3

Understand how ice carves out distinctive landscapes and explain how relict glacial landscapes in the UK came to be.

Glaciation Trial Exam

HT 4

T2 Weather and Climate Change

Gain an in depth understanding of what drives both global climate and UK climate.

 

HT 5

Explore how people are impacted by natural hazards such as drought & tropical cyclones

End of Year Trial Exam

HT 6

T3 Ecosystems

Learn about how climate affects the distribution of global biomes and how the climate influences the characteristics of Tropical Rainforests and Temperate Woodlands.

Trial Exam

Year 11

 

Name of topic

Key Content of the Topic

Assessment points

HT 1

T4 Changing cities. 

Explore how cities have evolved over time and understand the challenges and opportunities associated with the rise of megacities.

 

HT 2

Note: Due to Coronavirus Ofqual have removed the requirement for 2 days of fieldwork. Therefore, the Ancoats and Snowdonia field visit will not be taking place this academic year

Trial Exam

HT 3

T 5 Global Development

Widen your understanding about global development, debunk the myths and understand what can be done to ensure countries progress & develop to fulfil their potential.

Trial Exam

HT 4

T6 Resource Management

Expand your knowledge on modern techniques for maximising renewable energy and gain a greater understanding of the opportunities and challenges ahead with regards to energy security.

Trial Exam

HT 5

T7 UK Geographical Investigations

This is a synoptic element which looks to consolidate what you have learnt in previous topics, but this time applied to UK challenges for the Paper 3 examination.

 

HT 6

NA

 

GCSE exams

If you wish to look at the specification in more detail please follow the link to the Edexcel GCSE Geography B  Specification below:
https://qualifications.pearson.com/content/dam/pdf/GCSE/Geography-A/2016/specification-and-sample-assessments/Geography_A_Issue3%20GCSE%20(9-1)%20Specification.pdf

Recommended Revision Guides for GCSE
Students should use the topic list provided in the Study Skills folder to guide their revision.  Pupils are given many revision materials from the department and these should be used for revision purposes, especially case study notes. 
Pearson produce a Revision workbook (ISBN 978-1-292-13373-7) and a Revision Guide (ISBN 978-1-292-13377-5).

Support available for GCSE Students
In the Christmas term of Year 11 some pupils will be asked to attend a series of revision sessions in preparation for trial exams. 
Individual teachers also offer intervention/ exam masterclass sessions after Christmas in Year 11.
Students should seek help from their class teacher if they are encountering problems. 


Key Stage 5 Curriculum Overview – A Level
Examination Board: Edexcel

The course is relevant and exciting and helps pupils develop geography-related and broader attributes that are important for post-18 education.   It provides pupils with the opportunity to develop a greater knowledge and understanding of headline global issues and empowers them to consider how these issues can be tackled to enable sustainable futures.  Geography is taught in classes which tend to be between 12 and 20 pupils in size.

A range of geographical issues are studied at different scales (local, regional, national and global). Examples include the impact of global heating and receding glaciers on global sea levels, the regeneration of Altrincham, the perceived ‘threat’ of migration to working class communities in Hackney, the emergence of China as a global superpower, water conflicts in North Africa, changes to the global carbon cycle and their implications, and changing carbon the impacts and management of global climate change.

Pupils further develop a wide range of skills throughout the course, including literacy, statistical analysis, data collection and data presentation, understanding of values and attitudes, teamwork, problem solving, decision making, independent learning and use of information and communication technology.

Fieldwork and research are interesting and fun aspects of the course.  Students participate in a residential fieldtrip to Belncathra, in Cumbria.  This helps to support pupils in developing their understanding of geographical processes and helps them to develop the skills required to undertake their own Independent Investigation - which is worth 20% of the A Level course. 

Independent learning is an important aspect of the A Level Geography.  Pupils are expected to read around the subject, following teacher recommendations, the AGSB_Geography Twitter account and other sources.  

Sixth form Geography Prefects run their own Geography Society, GeogSoc which includes a weekly Key Stage 3 Geography Club held on Friday lunchtimes and university style lectures that support and enhance their learning.  These include Geographical Association lectures at Manchester University and the Trafford Grammar Schools Lecture Series.