At Ackton Pastures Academy, it is our intention that Geography is taught through topic work, as part of a whole school topic-based approach to teaching and learning. This enables teachers to forge cross curricular links giving a meaningful context for the learning. However, teachers make it explicit to children that they are learning geography skills and that they are being ‘Geographers’.
Geography is important in our school as it provides a means of exploring, appreciating and understanding the world in which we live and how it has evolved. We explore the relationship between Earth and its people. It stimulates curiosity and imagination. Wherever possible, we aim to build upon the child’s ‘Personal Geography’ by developing geographical skills, understanding and knowledge through studying places and themes.
Our units of work are designed to be bespoke for our children and their experiences. Staff continually review and adapt work and learning to meet our children’s needs. Fieldwork sessions are incorporated into the units of work to actively engage the children in their learning.
At Key Stage 1, our pupils develop knowledge about their own locality in Castleford, the United Kingdom and the World. They can understand basic subject-specific vocabulary relating to human and physical geography and begin to use geographical skills, including first-hand observation, to enhance their locational awareness.
Key Stage 2, pupils extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom and Europe, North and South America. This includes the location and characteristics of a range of the world’s most significant human and physical features. Our pupils develop their use of geographical knowledge, understanding and skills to enhance their locational and place knowledge.
At Ackton Pastures Academy evidence of the children’s learning can be found in their topic files in Key Stage 1 or in topic books in Key Stage 2. Topic books in KS2 enable the children to make cross curricular links.
The children’s learning and understanding is assessed against the 2014 National Curriculum statements for Geography. This is both ongoing, to inform future planning, and summative to share with staff, leaders and parents. This ensures the pitch of lessons is well matched to need and that, by the end of each key stage, required content within the National Curriculum is adequately covered to prepare pupils for the next phase of their education. Leaders conduct pupil conferencing and interviews with the children to discuss their learning and establish the impact.