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           Mr Hosking                             Mr R Till

 Humanities Subject Lead         Subject Governor

Intent - What do we want children to learn?

Geography is an important subject in children gaining a better understanding of the world around them. Ultimately, we want children to be inquisitive and intrigued about the world whilst learning to think geographically. As their learning progress, we want children to gain a better understanding of place, knowing their locality first and then making conceptual connections with other processes and regions. The substantive elements of the Geography curriculum have been organised at Birchwood under the following broad areas:


  • Locational knowledge
  • Place knowledge
  • Human and physical processes
  •  Geographical skills

Pupils will develop their understanding of where major cities, countries, continents and seas are located through specific area being focused on year by year. Pupils will use a variety of maps, globes and digital software such as Digimaps to respect the concept of scale how it can be used in different ways. Pupils will learn about their locality and other areas planned into their learning in order for the children to make comparisons and learn about human and physical processes.



Implementation - How are we going to achieve our intent? 


The school has taken considerable time in writing a geography curriculum that is at least matched to the statutory requirements of the NC and capitalises upon the geographical features of our school setting.  These factors have been used in the creation of our bespoke progression of skills, knowledge and vocabulary in our geography curriculum.  Teachers also use Kapow scheme of work to support them in delivering the school’s curriculum, where appropriate to further aid with the delivery of the curriculum and to utilise Geographical Information Systems (GIS), we use Digimaps online mapping software.


Humanities is taught weekly as a subject area, alternating half-termly between Geography and History. This is to facilitate children’s deeper understanding of a Geography theme/area studied. In a half-term where Geography is taught, History ‘flashbacks’ are used in class at the beginning of every lesson. This demands pupils recall of what they have learnt in the term and summarised learning from their prior year groups. Geography is taught weekly throughout KS1 and KS2.  This is to facilitate building upon pupils’ prior learning and support recall of knowledge, skills and facts.

Wherever possible, a range of quality literary books are linked to their Geography learning and children have opportunities to write in cross-curricular contexts, for example in English.


Class teachers refer to Progression of skills grids (that reflect the National Curriculum programs of study) to ensure appropriate coverage across phases. Bespoke medium term outlines are produced for each historical topic area to ensure that intended knowledge that we want children to embed into their long-term memory is carefully selected.


Impact - What will it look like when we have achieved our intent?

There are literally hundreds of ways we can demonstrate the excellent impact our Humanities curriculum design has on our pupils. In a nutshell here is one example:

1. The Year 1 and 2 children all replicated London houses from Pudding Lane, dating back to 1666 when the Great Fire of London took place. They considered how their houses looked using drawings and videos of the streets back in 1666. They lined them up all together and set fire to them to show how the fire travelled so quickly due to the houses being built so close as well as mainly being made out of wood and with high winds on the first days.  For this exciting activity we asked the Fire service to come to school to make sure the activity was very safe and secure. 




The Great Fire Of London in Year 1 and 2

Year 3 and 4 trip History trip to Colchester Castle


In March, Year 3 and 4 went on a trip to Colchester Castle. This was linked to their learning about the Romans, with Colchester being recognised as the first Roman capital of England at the time 'Camulodunum'. 

The children thoroughly enjoyed their educational trip and learnt a lot through interactive workshops and activities. Below are a few photos that highlight the day. 

Click here for our Progression of Skills, Knowledge, Understanding and Vocabulary documents. These sequencing documents show how knowledge builds from EYFS year by year to the end of Y6 so that children know more and remember more.