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Our Geography Story

National Curriculum Intent


‘The national curriculum for geography aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes
  • understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time
  • are competent in the geographical skills needed to:
  • collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes
  • interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
  • communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.’



At Old Clee Primary Academy we place a great emphasis upon the importance of Geography lessons being enquiry based and promoting independent learning. In doing so, we strive to inspire in our pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and to provide them with the opportunities to become global citizens, deepening their interest and wonder in exploring their own place in the world.

Our children will develop a sense of their world on a local, national and global level understanding both how people affect their environment and how environments affect human behaviour. Areas of study are interleaved with the aim of aiding retrieval and of knowledge becoming part of children’s long term memory.

Our children will gain an understanding of people and places in more distant areas so they can begin to realise the great and rich variety of our world. They will have a clear understanding of their responsibilities within their own society whist also having a sound awareness into the sustainability of an ever-changing world.

Through the teaching of geography, Old Clee intends to:

  • Increase pupils’ awareness, knowledge and understanding of other cultures.
  • Develop pupils’ key skills, including how to use and interpret maps.
  • Make pupils aware of environmental problems at a local, regional and global level.
  • Encourage pupils to commit to sustainable development.
  • Develop a variety of skills, including those in relation to problem-solving, computing and collecting data in order to form conclusions.

Our intent is that teachers fully understand our Continuous Concepts and the skills our children need to develop. They will confidently use the planning documents to plan engaging and varied lessons. Teachers will evidence and track their coverage of the Continuous Concepts and will reflect upon the children’s learning to inform a teacher-based assessment at three data points throughout the year.



Geography will be delivered in fortnightly lessons with a Proof of Progress (POP) task at the end of every term. This will give teachers a clear idea of the progress each child has made. Areas of study will be interleaved to develop schema knowledge and aid retrieval so that information can extend to children’s long term memory.


Foundation Stage

Within the Early Years Foundation Stage, activities and experiences for pupils are based on the seven areas of learning and development. Provision focuses upon four specific areas:

  • Literacy
  • Maths
  • Understanding the world
  • Expressive arts and design

In particular, geography-based activities play an important role in developing pupils’ understanding of the world, helping them to comprehend a world beyond their local community.


Key Stage 1

In Key Stage 1, pupils will develop knowledge about the world, the United Kingdom and their locality. They will be taught how to use basic vocabulary pertaining to human and physical geography. The focus of the KS1 geography curriculum is location and place knowledge with human and physical geography and fieldwork interwoven across the year. In Year 1, the four countries of the United Kingdom as well as Sydney, Australia are interleaved throughout autumn, spring and summer terms. In Year 2, the focus is on the continents and oceans which are also interleaved, along with fieldwork, throughout the three terms.


Key Stage 2

Pupils should extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom and Europe, and North and South America. This will include the location and characteristics of a range of the world’s significant human and physical features. The areas of place and locational knowledge, physical geography, human geography and local geography (Y3 and Y5) / fieldwork (Y4 and Y6) are interleaved and revisited every term. They are taught during the same academic weeks to allow the Subject Lead to monitor progression across the school.




Because learning is a change to long-term memory, it is impossible to see the impact in the short term. We do, however, incorporate retrieval practice within our lessons to help learning become part of children’s long-term memory. We use comparative judgement in two ways: in the POP tasks we set and in comparing pupils’ work over time. We use lesson observations to see if the discovery-based lessons allow for deepened learning. POP tasks require pupils to undertake an independent activity which tests the combined retrieval of several previously taught continuous concepts.

Children will have regular opportunities for retrieval practice and to reflect on their learning. They will continue to build a range of vocabulary to enable them to articulate their understanding of geography. Children will develop their geographical skills by implementing them throughout the year and building on them as they move up the school. They will understand the processes that cause change over time to physical and human features. 

Our children will be confident in explaining what it means to be a geographer – that a geographer can locate and describe places across the world and investigate them using resources; can talk about patterns in countries in terms of weather and physical and human features; and can use geographical vocabulary to describe a places location and their physical and human features.

Teachers will feel confident teaching geography and subsequently will be confident in their delivery of our curriculum. CPD, lesson observations, learning walks, feedback and professional dialogue will offer teachers the support they need to build this confidence in the subject.


An example of skill progression within our geography curriculum


G2.1 Understand seasonal weather and describe hot and cold places in relation to where they are in the world.


Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6

Recognise some similarities and differences between life in this country and life in other countries.

I can describe patterns in the weather and the seasons and say if the place is near the North or South Pole or the equator.

I can describe patterns in the weather and the seasons and describe hot and cold places near the North or South Pole and the equator.

I can find patterns in the characteristics of locations using vocabulary like equator and hemisphere.

I can use appropriate vocabulary like equator, hemisphere tropics and Arctic and Antarctic Circles to describe patterns in the characteristics of locations.

I can describe some geographical features and zones (tropics, Arctic and Antarctic Circles and time zones) and say why they are important.

I can describe in detail some geographical features and zones (tropics, Arctic and Antarctic Circles and time zones) and say why they are important.


Successes in 2019-2020

  • Pupils have access to a world map displayed in every classroom.
  • Our skills-based long term plan ensures an even coverage of geographic skills.
  • Pupils enjoy geography lessons particularly map work and using atlases to discover the world.


Priorities for 2020-2021

  • Relevant fieldwork to extend and engage children within their learning – children experience fieldwork to encourage their learning and enable them to take part.

Exploring the world using the class map in Year 6